12 Hacks Every Mac User Should Learn

Jillian Knox Finley

Guy Aroch for Free People

What's not to love about a time-saving shortcut, particularly ones that can slice through an already hectic workday? We've rounded up our favourite keyboard hacks and hidden Mac amenities to have you functioning at full-throttle productivity. These easy hassle-free tips will carve precious seconds off any task. That time adds up. Keep scrolling to be in the know! 

1. Use the Emoji Keyboard: (command + control + space) Because sometimes only a cartoon can convey your tone. Depending on the program, the emoji may populate as a rectangle, but the images will be visible via mobile.

2. Start Up Silently: (power + F10 + hold) Power up in stealth mode with this handy, soundproof hack. Great for meetings. 

3. Delete Text from Left to Right(Fn + delete) Delete text from the opposite direction without having to reposition your curser. Perfect for super fast editing on the fly.

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4. Enable Pop-Up Dictionary: (control + command + D) Instead of opening a separate window to google a word, this easy command will define anything you need by hovering over the word.

5. Paste Unformatted Text: (command + shift + V) Add text from the clipboard without formatting to a document—a necessity for pasting anything from the web into Word.  

6. Type a Special Character: (“e” + hold) Looking for that accented character or letter? Peppering emails with sweet nothings in French? Hold down the letter key you want to see special versions of and a pop-up list will appear. Click or type the corresponding number from the menu, and you're good to go.

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7. Send Files to Trash: (command + delete) Send files to trash without a drag and drop. Highlight the item in question and use this easy command.

8. View Open Windows: (control + up arrow) Mission control allows you a bird's-eye view of everything you have open, enabling you to cruise effortlessly between windows. 

9. Use Spotlight as a Calculator: (command + spacebar) To add up a sum quickly without opening a separate window, use this easy command. When finished, simply click out. 

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10. Empty Trash: (command + shift + delete) To clear out your trash, use this simple command and then approve it. You’ll be all-clear. 

11. Cycle Through Apps: (command + tab) Using this command will present you with a window to view every running app. Hold down the command key and use tab to scroll through each one. To select an app, simply release command. 

12. Enable Dictation: Your Mac can take dictation for seamless hands-free note-taking. With this quick update, the feature becomes even more handy. From System Preferences, open Dictation & Speech. Click the radio button next to Dictation, and check both the "On" and "Use Enhanced Dictation" boxes. This enables dictation even if you are not connected to the Internet. To begin, quickly press function twice. Voilá, meet your digital secretary. 

Have a Mac hack we should know about? Tell us in the comments below. 

Explore: Apple, computer, hacks

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