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Useful computer mouse tips and shortcuts

When I first started working as a journalist, I had zero experience in how to write a good story. But when something had to be done urgently, I was the first one to be summoned, as I had the nickname "Fastest Finger in the Office“.

What gave me that ‘advantage’ over my co-workers was my excessive use of keyboard and mouse shortcuts, something I learned while competitively playing Warcraft, some ten, fifteen years ago.

So here I will show you some of the mouse shortcuts you can use to maximise your efficiency. You will be able to get the work done in half the time, but don’t tell anybody, because they’ll just shower you with more work! Try to always look busy!

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So here are some computer mouse tips:

Shift + mouse

There’s a way to select entire paragraphs of text without needing to hold your mouse down and drag it across the desk like you’re wrestling with it. Simply place the cursor at the beginning of the text you wish to select, then scroll down to the end. Hold the shift key, and left click where you want the selection to end.

The third button

Unless you’re a gamer boasting a Razer Deathadder 2013 (opens in new tab) mouse with a dozen buttons, your mouse probably has two buttons and a wheel, right? Wrong. In case you didn’t know, the wheel is also a button and can be pressed down. Pressing a link in a browser with the wheel will open the link in a new tab, and pressing it anywhere else will allow you to fast scroll through the page. Holding the CTRL button while scrolling will zoom the browser in and out, and holding the Shift button will make the browser go back or forward.

Double-click and triple-click

Double-clicking a word selects it entirely, but triple-clicking the word will select the entire paragraph. Also, if you double-click a word, but keep your mouse button pressed, you can drag to select entire word by word.

CTRL Click

If you want to highlight particular parts of text that are not next to each other, that can be done simply by CTRL-left clicking whatever you wish to highlight. This might be useful when you’re trying to copy only parts of a table or a list.

There are other things you can do with your mouse, like switch the left and right button or set up additional buttons to do particular tasks. These are only some mouse tips I found particularly useful in an office environment.

Sead Fadilpašić is a freelance tech writer and journalist with more than 17 years experience writing technology-focussed news, blogs, whitepapers, reviews, and ebooks. And his work has featured in online media outlets from all over the world, including Al Jazeera Balkans (where he was a Multimedia Journalist), Crypto News, TechRadar Pro, and IT Pro Portal, where he has written news and features for over five years. Sead's experience also includes writing for inbound marketing, where he creates technology-based content for clients from London to Singapore. Sead is a HubSpot-certified content creator.