If I could get rid of my mouse I would. When I’m really getting to work I prefer to keep my hands on the keyboard and not move back and forth to the mouse. However, there are some things that can only be done with a pointing device so I’m stuck with this little rodent on my desk. The good news is there are a lot of things you can do from the keyboard that not only keeps you from taking your hands off the keyboard but are much faster than mousing around the screen. Below are a few of the keyboard shortcuts I use daily in Windows. Hopefully, you’ll find and remember a few of them and save a few seconds every time, adding up to hours of savings in a year.

  1. The Windows Key – I see so many users grab their mouse to click on the Windows Key. The Windows key is your entry point to searching for programs to run. Just press the key on your keyboard and then start typing the name of the program you want to run. You’ll see the list of options shrink the more you type. Then you can either just hit enter or maybe down arrow once or twice and then enter to start the program.
  2. Win-E – Besides running programs probably the second most common thing to do is open the Windows Explorer (My Computer) program in order to find files on your computer. Pressing Windows and the ‘E’ key simultaneously¬†will quickly open the Explorer window and you can start looking for that brownie recipe pronto!
  3. Win-R – Need access to the Run command? Press Windows and ‘R’ simultaneously and you are ready to type in a program, folder, document, or¬†internet resource. Bonus: type cmd and press enter to get a command prompt.
  4. Win-D – Press Windows and the ‘D’ key simultaneously to get to the Desktop quickly. Press again go back to all those windows on your screen.
  5. Win-L – You do lock your computer every time you walk away, right? Windows and ‘L’ is the shortcut you’ve been looking for.

I’m purposely keeping this short, because I don’t want to overwhelm you. If you are hungry for more, here’s a complete list from Microsoft.