Apple Mac computers are like no other machine, and no offence to Microsoft, but once you go Mac – you just can’t go back!

Other than its gorgeous looks and shiny graphics (amongst a million other positive things) Macs have many fantastic shortcuts. These shortcuts make laborious tasks done and dusted in seconds! Allowing you to spend more time doing the things you love on your Mac.

Most of these shortcuts are bundled into nifty keyboard combinations. These great commands save you scrolling through endless dialogue menus and clicking through multiple options with your mouse. Now you can complete the exact same task just by tapping a few keys simultaneously.

Most of these keyboard shortcuts involve you pressing down your Shift key, Control, Option, and Command keys while holding down another key.

It may seem a little confusing at first but please don’t be daunted. Once you have memorized at least the commands you will utilize the most, you won’t remember your Mac life without them.

Nearly every program has its own personal batch of keystroke shortcuts, but the following table lists the useful and common Mac shortcuts that work in your most popular programs.

Mac shortcuts

Tip – If you are not sure what the shortcuts are for a certain program you are one, i.e. Adobe Photoshop, don’t fret! Do not gallivant off and waste hours researching them on the web. Programs should always show their keystroke shortcuts for the various commands on their drop-down menus in the toolbar.

how to use mac shortcuts


In the beginning these instructions look rather cryptic as they are made up of symbols instead of describing the keys to press by name (such as ctrl or command).

Here is a picture translating these symbols so you know what keys to actually press.

mac keyboard shortcuts

Luckily the majority of shortcuts only involve you tapping two keys, such as Command+Q (the Quit command). However some of these shortcuts can involve simultaneously holding down three or four keys, such as Shift+Command+3, which handily saves the current screen image into a file.

Sophie Tucker

Sophie Tucker

Chef Author at
Hi I'm Sophie, Chef Author at I'm a self proclaimed Mac Nerd and try and make it my job to know the latest tips and tricks for my readers. So whether you are a budding Mac geek, or a full blown enthusiast, I hope my guides can get you through smoothly :)
Sophie Tucker

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