In my last article, I wrote about mouse double-click tricks.
In this tutorial, I will show you some amazing things you can do in Excel by using a combination of mouse and keyboard.
Suppose you have three cells, and you want to shift the content of cell A1 to cell A3 (as shown below), how would you do it?
Usually, we go for the longer approach with a minimum of 3 steps, where you copy and paste to achieve this. But a keyboard and mouse combination can do this in a split second. Here is how:
- With the cell selected that you want to shift, press the Shift key on your keyboard.
- Left-click on the horizontal edge of the selected cell and drag it down.
- Leave the mouse button when you see a horizontal ‘I’ shaped thick line at the bottom of the destination cell.
Note: You can use this trick to shift cells, rows, and columns.
Copy and Insert Cells in the Middle of the Data Set
Considering the same dataset, as shown above, how would you insert a copy of a cell/row in the middle of the data set (for example, copy and insert cell A1 in A3)?
The long and inefficient way would be to first copy the cell/row and then insert it (a 2 step process). Here is a better way:
- With the cell selected that you want to copy, press the Control and Shift key on your keyboard.
- Left click on the horizontal edge of the selected cell and drag it down.
- Leave the mouse button when you see an ‘I’ shaped thick line at the top of the destination cell.
Note: This trick works for individual cells, rows, and columns.
Quickly Create a Copy of a Worksheet
To quickly create a copy of a worksheet:
- Press Control key on the keyboard.
- With the Control key pressed, left-click on the tab name at the bottom of the workbook, drag it towards the working area of the worksheet (you would notice that a plus sign in a rectangle appears along with the cursor).
- Leave the button.
Note: The position of the copy of the worksheet depends on where you leave the control key. Notice that there is a small black arrow (pointing downwards) when you drag the cursor. It determines the position of the worksheet copy.
Insert Multiple Columns at One Go
Suppose you have a dataset as shown below, and you have to insert columns as indicated.
The usual approach is to select each column separately and insert the new column one at a time. Now here is the better way to do this:
- Select the columns one after the other (keep the Control key pressed while selecting).
- Right-click on the column header and select Insert – this will insert one column for each of the selected columns.
Special Menu Mouse Tricks – Quickly Paste Formulas as Values
This one is pure magic. Try this:
- Select a range of cells.
- Right click at the edge of the selection, move it a little to the right, come back to the original position and leave the right click.
- Magically, a menu appears, which you can use to converts formulas to values.
These are my top five keyboard and mouse tricks in Excel that I use all the time.
How about you?
Share your favorite keyboard/mouse tricks with me.
Recommendation: If you work with a mouse a lot, it makes you susceptible to wrist pain and other issues such as carpal tunnel. I recommend you get yourself an ergonomic mouse to minimize wrist pain. I have been using one for the past 3 years and I find these really effective.
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