7 Commonly Used Keyboard Shortcuts – For Seniors

Below are seven of the most commonly used keyboard shortcuts guaranteed to save you time when working at your computer.

Note: The one key used in all the shortcuts is the
CONTROL [CTRL] key on a PC or the
COMMAND [CMD] key on the Mac.
CTRL or CMD are the abbreviations that will be used throughout the post, here and elsewhere on the blog.

Edit Menu in WordFor most of these actions we usually simply work with our mouse using the EDIT drop down menu.

This, in fact, does give us the symbols for the shortcuts. Look at the right-hand side of the menu.

Even though I knew this, I’ve never paid attention long enough to look at and implement the ones I wasn’t using.  I wonder. How many of you reading this have paid attention to those symbols?

How to Use The Keyboard Keys
For each of the shortcuts click and hold down the
CTRL or CMD key. Then tap the appropriate letter key
indicated in each shortcut shown below.

1 – CTRL/CMD Z = UNDO – If you make a mistake in typing, inserting and/or editing a picture, or almost any other action, using these keys will UNDO the mistake.

And you can keep “erasing” to go back to where you wanted to be in your writing. If you have gone too far back, CTRL/CMD Y will REDO

2 – CTRL/CMD S = SAVE – A good practice to get into is “saving” quite frequently as you type a document, web page
or email.

3 – CTRL/CMD C = COPY – Use this shortcut, when you want to grab a word or phrase to save and put in  another place or in a new document.

Place the mouse at the start of what you want to copy. Then clicking on the mouse, drag the cursor to the end of the word or phrase that you want to capture. You’ll note that it’s now highlighted.

This shortcut will copy it and keep it in memory for you to paste (#5 below) and stay there until you copy something else.  This is also good for copying a word or phrase that you may want to repeat several times.

4 – CTRL/CMD A = SELECT ALL – If you want ALL the copy that’s on the page, place your mouse cursor anywhere in the body and click. Then use the shortcut. The whole page will become highlighted.

5 – CTRL/CMD V = PASTE – that which you just copied.
Place your mouse where you now want the copy, then
hit the shortcut keys.

6 – CTRL/CMD X = DELETE – If you actually want to cut, that is eliminate, what you highlighted (same process as in COPY)

Remember if you make a mistake you can always go back to
# 1 (above) UNDO = CTRL/CMD Y

AND my most favorite now, especially when I remember
to use it –

7 – CTRL/CMD F = FIND – To find a word or phrase in an open email, document or web page. When you use these two keys, a search box will open somewhere on the page depending on the program you are in.

Find in Chrome
In the Chrome Browser, a small search box opens in the bottom left of the page.


Find in Internet Explorer

In Internet Explorer it comes up on the top left under the tool bars.

Find in Safari

In Safari it’s on the top right of the page


Find in Firefox - Bottom Left

In Firefox the search is in the bottom left.

Find in Mac Mail

In my Mail program a pop-up search window opens.


Find in Windows Mail

In Windows Mail you need to use the Edit menu to get to Find.  Then a pop-up window opens giving you a choice of finding a “message…”, “people…” or “text in this message.”

What a time saver learning about this last one! After all my years on the computer, I only recently became aware of the FIND shortcut and it was in the EDIT menus all the time!!!.

I can’t begin to count the times I’ve scrolled down web pages looking for something specific. And, all that had been necessary was to use CTRL/CMD F!

Have fun.  I’d appreciate learning from you what, if anything, in this list is new to you. Simply place your comments in the “Leave a reply…” below.  Also, please let us know your favorite shortcut.


7 Commonly Used Keyboard Shortcuts – For Seniors — 4 Comments

  1. Sheila,

    YOU ARE SO AMAZING!!! I thought I KNEW the most common ones!! Did not even know about REDO which I could have used hundreds of times! And FIND!! OMG how many HOURS that would have saved!! Knew it on my PC and never found it on my MAC!!!!!I AM SO GRATEFUL!! Wow! And I almost didn’t read this article!!!! THANKS SO MUCH!!!!!

    • I love your enthusiasm, Morgine. Thanks so much for sharing it here and for letting us know that you did gain something from this post.

      Continued enjoyment. I, myself, only recently learned about the REDO – CTRL/CMD+Y

    • Thanks for the sharing that the iPad is all that you use. Good input for me. If you are not already familiar with the site, you might find iPad Insight to be very helpful.
      I’ve another question. Do you use a SmartPhone also?

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