On a busy day, you know what it means to save even a second. It wastes time to switch from keyboard to mouse all the time.
Leveraging Mac shortcuts can help you do your work quickly instead of fiddling on your mouse or keypad. Research shows that not using keyboard shortcuts causes you to lose about 64 hours every year.
This article has compiled the 10 most innovative Mac shortcuts that can improve your efficiency and your business’s online presence.
Best Mac Shortcuts in 2023
- Open the Spotlight Search Tool
Command key + Space bar: This is perhaps the most helpful Mac shortcut of all. Anytime you search a file on your Mac, use this keyboard shortcut and type the file’s name. The result is instant. Also, Spotlight will search through bookmarks, iMessages, and all the files on your hard drive. This Mac shortcut also offers a quick way to find and open applications that aren’t on your dock.
- Quit Any Application
Command key + Q: You can use this keyboard shortcut to shut down any application immediately. Remember, this Mac shortcut doesn’t just minimize applications. This shortcut completely shuts down the apps.
- Switch Between Different Windows in an Application
Command key + ∼: This Mac shortcut makes doing research a lot easier. For instance, if you have three documents open from the Apple Pages app: one with a research document, another with your draft, and the other with your notes. This Mac shortcut enables you to switch easily between the three documents. This shortcut is useful, especially when you’re working on a MacBook with a small screen.
- Switch Quickly Between Active Applications
Command key + Tab: When you press and hold the Command key and then tap the Tab button, this opens the App Switcher, letting you switch between all active applications by tapping the Tab button.
- Force-Quit an Application
Command key + Option + Q: If an application is locked up and the Command key + Q shortcut isn’t working, you can use this Mac shortcut to force the application to quit. Also, you can force-quit multiple applications by pressing the Command key + Option + Esc, which is the same as using the Control key + Alt + Delete on Windows. After force-quitting multiple apps, you can then choose which application you want to close from there.
- Record the Screen or Take Screenshots
Screenshots let you quickly identify customer pain points. Aditya Maheshwari notes, “A few years ago, I was pitching features without really understanding the pain points of our customers…Always start your conversation with the challenges your customers are facing.”
There are many ways you can take screenshots on your Mac device.
- Command key + 3: This Mac shortcut screenshots the entire visible window. Thus, anything you see on your screen will show up in the screenshot if you take a screenshot using this keyboard shortcut.
- Command + Shift + 4: This Mac shortcut screenshots a particular area of your screen with the help of the rectangular cropping tool. This shortcut is ideal for sharing snippets of text or images with your target audience on social media.
- Command key + Shift + 5: Starting with macOS Mojave, Apple makes it easy to view all the screenshot tools at once using this keyboard shortcut. When you press this shortcut, you’ll see a toolbar, which gives you the options for capturing your entire screen, capturing a particular portion of a window, or capturing a specific window.
You can also use this shortcut to record a portion of your screen or the entire screen and select where you want to save your images and videos. It’s essential to note that by default, screenshots are saved to your desktop.
- Address or Search Bar (on Safari)
Command key + L: Reaching for the mouse to active Safari’s address or search bar wastes a ton of time. When you use this keyboard shortcut in Safari, your cursor will jump up to your search bar, where you can type an URL or a search term. Also, this keyboard shortcut works perfectly with Google Chrome. You can also use this shortcut on Windows with the Control key.
Safari has some other brilliant keyboard shortcuts, including the Command key + T shortcut that opens a new tab and the Command key + Z keyboard shortcut, which reopens the last tab you accidentally closed. And if you’re looking to reopen a tab that accidentally closed on Opera or Chrome, just press Command key + Shift + T.
- Instantly Lock Your Mac Device
Command key + Control + Q: If you want to step away from your desk at the office or home office and you don’t want anyone snooping around on your Mac device, use this shortcut to immediately activate the lock screen. This is a lot faster than switching to a lock screen using the menu bar.
- Move Files to a Folder
Command key + Control + N: If you have a lot of files saved on your desktop and you want to move them to a new folder, this Mac shortcut can help you out. You just need to select all the files you want to move and then press Command key + Control + N to move the selected files to a new folder.
- Preview Files Using Quick Look
Click + Space bar: If you wish to see what a file looks like, but don’t want to waste a ton of time opening the associated application, select the file in the Finder folder. Then, press and hold the spacebar. Also, this works with files saved on the desktop. A Full-page preview will appear alongside Markup options. This works perfectly with everything from Microsoft Excel files and images to PDFs.
To preview multiple files at once, press and hold the Command key, select the files, then press Command key + Y. The Command key + Y shortcut also works perfectly for single files, however, in that case, it’s inconvenient. Once the window is open, you can navigate the files using the arrow keys in the upper left.
Depending on how you use your Mac and the type of work you do with it, you’ll find the 10 Mac shortcuts discussed in this article extremely useful in improving your productivity and your business’s online presence. Perhaps you’re already using some of these keyboard shortcuts, but adding a few of them to your arsenal will help you save time, improving your workflow.
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