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19 Keyboard Shortcuts That Will Make Your Life Easier

Keyboard shortcuts take a little time to learn, but once you’ve got them down, you’ll save so much time.

People will wonder how you get so much work done so quickly. They might even call you a keyboard wizard (or maybe not) but you will be deserving of the title. ?

As a general rule of thumb, the less you have to use the mouse, the more productive you will be. Keyboard shortcuts eliminate back and forth time it takes you to reach over and moving the mouse. It may not seem like much, but it really adds up over the course of day.

These keyboard shortcuts are primarily for Apple computers, however, I’ve included the PC variation when possible. (Also note that I can’t verify the PC variation because I don’t have a computer to test them on, so please help the community out and let us know your favorite shortcuts in the comments!)

For the shortcuts, read the “+” as “and.” So for example, to open a new tab in a browser, you would hit the Command (CMD key) and T.

Start practicing as you go through. Soon it will become second nature and you’ll be more productive in no time!

Browser Commands

CMD + W = Close tab in a browser (be careful not to accidentally hit Q)

CMD + T = Open a new tab in a browser

CMD + Shift + T = Open a new tab in an incognito window in Google Chrome

CMD + L = Go to address bar

CMD + Q = Close all tabs

For a PC, instead of CMD use CTRL.

Text/Document Commands

ALT/OPTION + right/left arrow keys = move cursor to previous/next word

ALT/OPTION + SHIFT + right/left arrow keys = selects/highlights text by word you move

SHIFT + any arrow key = select/highlight individual character

CMD + right/left arrow keys = move cursor beginning/end of line

CMD + right/left arrow keys = move cursor to beginning/end of document/text box (doesn’t work in Microsoft on Apple products)

Shift + any arrow key OR any of the above commands = select/highlight text as you move

CMD + X = Cut

CMD + C = Copy

CMD + V = Paste

CMD + A = select all

CNTRL + SHIFT + CMD + Space Bar = Brings up emoji keyboard

Window Control

CMD + Space = spotlight search (open apps/files by writing their name)

CMD + Tab = change app

CMD + ` = change window for the current app

I also recommend installing Spectacle (it’s free) for snapping windows into position by the keyboard without manually resizing every time. Total game changer.

For a PC, use ALT + Tab for changing app and changing window for current app.

There are of course loads more shortcuts out there, and many programs even have their own specialty commands. Do you have any favorite keyboard shortcuts? Let the community know down below!

About the Author

Nicole Booz

Nicole Booz is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of GenTwenty, GenThirty, and The Capsule Collab. She has a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and is the author of The Kidult Handbook (Simon & Schuster May 2018). She currently lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and two sons. When she’s not reading or writing, she’s probably hiking, eating brunch, or planning her next great adventure.