Tag Archives for " shortcut keys "

3 The 4 Fastest Formatting Fixes I Know

Hands down, the biggest complaint I get is that Microsoft Word seems to have a mind of its own when it comes to formatting. People swear they did nothing more than breathe on their document, and things went completely wonky!

Of course, without actually standing over their shoulder and watching them work, it's really impossible for me to know exactly what happened. A lot of times, there's a pretty easy File > Options tweak that could prevent similar snafus from happening again. (And don't even get me started about why you need to learn to use Styles.)

But in my experience, most people aren't particularly interested in trying to figure out how it happened. They just want to fix it and move on.

So for that crowd, I've put together a two-minute video on the four fastest ways I know to basically nuke your formatting so you can start over. You can basically choose among these:

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Keeping Word Commands at Your Fingertips

When Microsoft Word 2007 came out, users lamented the introduction of the Ribbon. Replacing the familiar menu system of Word 2003 with a newfangled, visually-oriented system of buttons and drop-downs went over like the proverbial lead balloon. It all came down to one thing: "How am I ever going to find anything on here?"

Nobody wants to waste time scrolling through a menu system looking for commands or functions they use frequently. Here, I'll show you three methods for keeping your most common commands within easy reach so you can create documents faster and with less frustration.

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Opening Microsoft Word Documents

Microsoft Word's really not very different from most word processors in the way it retrieves current documents, and most common editing tasks will be familiar to anyone who's worked with a word processor in Microsoft Windows. Let's go over some of the basics.

Opening an existing document with File > Open

There are several ways to open the document already saved in Microsoft Word. You might remember the File tab and the Quick Access Toolbar from the previous lesson. Either of those can be used to retrieve a document:

Word 2010

In Word 2010, you'll be taken to the familiar Windows Explorer to find the file you're looking for. Simply navigate to the correct drive and folder, double-click on the file name, and you're in.

In Word 2016, here's what you'll get when you click on the File tab:

Word 2016

The default view shows your most recent documents (convenient!). But you can navigate to your OneDrive cloud account or a local or network drive to find any document you need.

Using a shortcut key to open documents

For those of you who prefer to use the keyboard over the mouse, here's a quick shortcut key to take you directly to the File > Open area: CTRL-O (hold down the Control key and type the letter "O" for Open).

Opening an Existing Document via the Quick Access Toolbar

The Quick Access Toolbar works just like File > Open. Simply click on the open folder icon:

... then navigate to the correct folder in Windows Explorer (either on your PC or on your network and double-click on the file name to retrieve it.

The Open File icon should be in your Quick Access Toolbar by default. If it is not, just click on the drop-down arrow at the end of the QAT and make sure Open is checked in the list:

Here, the "new document" button is enabled in the Quick Access Toolbar

Click here for a more detailed demonstration of how to customize your Quick Access Toolbar.

Let's Review

Here's what we've covered in this tutorial:

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    Opening an existing document using the File tab
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    Opening a document with a shortcut key
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    Opening an existing document using the Quick Access Toolbar

The next tutorial in this series will cover ...

Next time, we'll cover basic keyboard commands you can use while typing, Insert versus Overtype mode, and multiple ways you can select text for formatting or copying/moving. See you in the next lesson!