Time-Saving Mouse Tricks Everyone Should Know


Right about now you’re probably thinking something along the lines of “Mouse tips? Mike has totally gone off his rocker this time! What can I possible not know about something as simple as using my mouse?” Well, give me two minutes to check that you indeed know as much as you think you do about your mouse.

Most people don’t realize all the cool things they can do with their mouse. Here is a collection of useful tips and tricks that can help you be more productive and work smarter-not harder.

Quick Text Selection with Shift+click

Most text editing apps let you select blocks of text using the Shift+click method. Just click at the beginning the text you want to select, hold down the Shift key and click at the end of the text to select all of the text in between. Now you’re ready to cut, copy, format or do whatever you want with that text.

Bonus tip: Hold the ALT key while dragging and highlighting text in Word is a great trick to use if you want to select a column of text vertically.

Using the scroll wheel

I think everyone knows how to scroll up and down on a page using the scroll wheel right? Here are a few more things that you might not know:

  • You can click the mouse wheel too. For example, use the mouse wheel to click a link and it will open in a new browser tab.
  • Hold the CTRL key while you scroll the wheel to Zoom in and Out on a web page, word document, excel spreadsheet, etc. This is SUPER HANDY when working in Powerpoint.
  • Holding down the Shift key while scrolling up or down in most Internet browsers to go back and forward between web pages.
  • Some mouse wheels can be pushed left or right to also move back and forward on a web page.

Use right-click

The right side of your mouse holds the keys to about a zillion handy shortcuts. For example, dragging a file with the right mouse button instead of the left automatically prompts you to move or copy it, saving you the extra step in the cut/copy/paste dance. You can also right click web links to control how/where they open and so many more. Give your right click button a try all over the place to see what handy shortcuts you can discover! 

Ctrl key and mouse click or highlight

For working with lists and spreadsheets, you can hold the CTRL key while you click to select multiple items or cells. Try it out in the lists below to pick multiple items.

Turn On Windows SnapTo feature

If you’d like to save a little time and effort chasing down dialog boxes, turn on the Windows ‘Snap To’ feature and your mouse will automagically teleport to the dialog box messages without you having to lift a finger.

Share your favorite mouse tips!

What did we miss? Leave a comment and share how you use your mouse to do cool stuff and save time!

Tip of the Week #425

2 thoughts on “Time-Saving Mouse Tricks Everyone Should Know

  1. You’re so smart, Mike. I like the tip about clicking a link with the scroll wheel to open it in a new tab.

    I also got excited about CTRL + scroll wheel to zoom in and out, but I’m on a Mac and it didn’t work. But I adjusted it in System Preferences > Accessibility > Zoom and I’m good to go. Thanks for the great tips!


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