Want to save time? The best time-saver is mastering Mac keyboard shortcuts. This will put your productivity in overdrive and you will be blazing fast when it comes to ticking off your work checklist. 

For instance, you might be at a loss trying to type the upside-down question mark when writing a document in Spanish. Since the letters in the Mac keyboard are in English, you may have to search Google or copy-paste it from somewhere else and then ensure the formatting is correct. You could have saved so much time if you simply knew how to write upside down question mark. And the keyboard shortcut for this is Option + Shift + ?. 

Similarly, there are other shortcuts to be learned that can help you streamline your workflow. 

So, without further ado, let’s look at the shortcuts you wish you knew yesterday. 

  1. Foreign language characters 
Option + 1¡
Option + <letter>Accented letters
Option + c ç
  1. Basic shortcuts 
Command + CCopy
Command + VPaste 
Command + XCut
Command + ASelect all
Command + ZUndo 
Command + P Print 
  1. System and Finder shortcuts 
Command + IGet Info window for the selected file 
Command + DDuplicate the chosen files 
Command + YQuick Look 
Command + TShow or hide the tab bar in a Finder window 
Command + 2View the items in the Finder window as a list 
Command + brightness down Enable or disable video mirroring when an external display is connected 
Command + Mission Control Show the desktop 
Command + JDisplay the View options
Command + /Hide or show the status bar in a Finder window 
  1. Spotlight shortcuts 
CommandDisplay the path of a result
ReturnOpen a result 
Command + RView a file in an app or Finder
Tab Show the preview area
Arrow keys Move up and down the results 
  1. Safari shortcuts 
Arrow keys Scroll left, right, up and down
Shift + SpacebarScroll up a page 
Control + Tab Switch to the next tab 
Command + LGo to the Address bar 
Command + click a link Open link in new tab 
Command + Escape Enter or exit full screen 
Command + RReload a page 
Command + FFind specific text on the web page 
Command + IHide or show the toolbar 
Command + Option + LShow downloads 
  1. Document shortcuts 
Control + EMove to the end of the paragraph or line 
Control + AMove to the beginning of the paragraph or line 
Control + PMove up a line 
Control + DDelete a character to the right of the insertion point 
Control + Command + DShow or hide the definition of the selected word 
  1. Startup shortcuts 
Command + RmacOS Recovery mode 
Command + VVerbose mode 
Command + SSingle-user mode 
Option + Command + P + RReset PRAM or NVRAM
  1. Accessibility shortcuts 
Command + F5 Turn on or off VoiceOver 
Control + Option + Command + Comma Reduce contrast 
Control + Option + Command + 8Invert colors 
Control + Option + F8 Open VoiceOver Utility 
Option + Command + 8Turn zoom on or off 
  1. Window management shortcuts 
Command + MMinimize the window 
Command + FFill the screen with the front window 
Command + Option + MMinimize all windows 
Command + Option + HHide the Dock 
Option + Command + FMove a window to a specific screen
  1. Screenshot shortcuts 
Shift + Command + 3Capture the entire screen 
Shift + Command + 4Capture a portion of the screen 
Shift + Command + 4 + Spacebar Capture a menu or window 
Shift + Command + 5Open the screenshot menu for more options 

Advanced Shortcuts

  1. Command + W or Option + Command + W – Close only the front window or all the open windows. 
  2. Option + Command + Escape – Bring up the force quit menu to forcefully quit an unresponsive application
  3. Control + Command + F – Use a supported application on the full screen. 
  4. Spacebar – Use Quick Look to preview selected items 
  5. Control + Power button – See the dialog box with multiple options like shut down, sleep or restart. 
  6. Command + K – Open System Preferences 
  7. Command + Option + O – Open the Go menu to quickly navigate through selected folders. 
  8. Command + Option + Shift + 4 – Record a screencast of the chosen area. 
  9. Command + Option + H – Hide the Dock to maximize screen space. 
  10. F3 – Open Mission Control to view all the desktops and windows that are open. 
  11. F12 – Decrease volume. 

Besides these keyboard shortcuts on your Mac, it is possible to create custom keyboard shortcuts to speed up your workflow. This how you can create custom keyboard shortcuts:

  • Open System Preferences or System Settings 
  • Choose Keyboard 
  • Select the Shortcuts tab 
  • Select App Shortcuts 
  • Click the add or plus button 
  • Click on the Application pop-up menu and choose a particular application
  • Create keyboard shortcuts 

When creating custom keyboard shortcuts, ensure the new shortcuts don’t replace the default shortcuts. This might create issues. 

The Bottom Line 

So, there you have it! These are the essential Mac keyboard shortcuts you must know to speed up your workflow. Master them and see the difference. 

Do you want to add to this list of keyboard shortcuts? Leave a comment.