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Day 4 of Personal Automation Challenge

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We’re almost at the finish line of the Automation Challenge. Today is day four and if you haven’t completed the previous days yet, be sure to do that first:

Automation Challenge – Day 1
Automation Challenge – Day 2
Automation Challenge – Day 3

As you have noticed, we’re making you watch the same video during this challenge. Some of you have already watched the whole video but most people haven’t. We do this intentionally to ensure that you’re not only watching the video…but also taking action in small increments! As you implement things from the video, you will see and feel the power of automation. We hope that it will inspire you to automate even more things.

Now on to today’s challenge. If you’ve been following Asian Efficiency for a while, you know we’re big fans of keyboard shortcuts. They can save you so much time and you only need to know 1-2 keystrokes for each app you use daily to see tremendous benefits.

Today we’re going to take it a step further. On Windows and Mac, you can create custom keyboard shortcuts to execute different things. Part of today’s challenge is to create your own custom keyboard shortcut.

For example, one of my personal favorite shortcuts on my Mac is SHIFT+CONTROL+COMMAND+P which will export the current document into a PDF file. I probably use it 2-3 times a day and I set this up back in 2013. Six years later I’m still using it and has saved me a lot of time.


Now we challenge you to create your own custom keyboard shortcut. Watch the (same) video below to learn how to do that.

Mac users: start at [10:46] (Mac – App Shortcuts)
Windows users: start at [18:07] (Win – App Shortcuts)

Challenge for Mac users:

  1. Create a custom keyboard shortcut for an app you use daily.
    Think of anything you do with your mouse and how you can automate that with a keyboard shortcut. A couple of examples we have:
    MindNode: Export to PDF
    OmniFocus: Move Old Data to Archive…
    Evernote: Share Note
    You just need one keyboard shortcut.
  2. Comment below that you did it!

Challenge for Windows users:

  1. Create a custom keyboard shortcut for an app you use daily to launch it, i.e. Chrome, Outlook or Evernote.
  2. Comment below that you did it!

To clarify: you can pick any keyboard shortcut for any app you use. You don’t have to limit yourself to what you see in the video or what we suggest. It’s why we call it Personal Automation – it’s personal to you.

If you use both operating systems, just pick one. You’re almost done with the challenge. Today was one of the more challenging ones so if you made it this far, congratulate yourself! You’re becoming an automation wizard.

Come back tomorrow for the final challenge!

Update: Day 5 is now live.

Discover the 1 Lifehack of Highly Successful People

This one lifehack led to the biggest breakthrough of my career. People like Steve Jobs and Oprah have used it to catapult their success, and now you can too.


Posted by Alexander Peter Gray  | September 16, 2019 at 11:51PM | Reply


Posted by Frank Mason  | September 8, 2019 at 10:30PM | Reply

Created 2 shortcuts to open apps that I use daily

Posted by Kamil Skrok  | September 8, 2019 at 7:22AM | Reply

Using my Windows without shortcuts would be so terrible – I cant even imagine!

Posted by Julia S.  | September 6, 2019 at 5:38PM | Reply

This is great! Added shortcut in Things3 to create Repeating To-Do’s. And poof – the shortcut shows up in the menu bar and in the CheatSheet page.

Posted by Julia  | September 6, 2019 at 5:37PM | Reply

This is great! Added shortcut in Things3 to create Repeating To-Do’s. And poof – the shortcut shows up in the menu bar and in the CheatSheet page.

Posted by Sander  | September 6, 2019 at 10:32AM | Reply

Done! Added hyperkey to MailMate

Posted by John Sepples  | September 5, 2019 at 5:22PM | Reply


Posted by Serrian  | September 5, 2019 at 11:08AM | Reply

Already Done!

Posted by Bryan Yang  | September 4, 2019 at 6:09PM | Reply

Done! This was the most useful one by far.

Posted by Jeremie  | September 4, 2019 at 3:59PM | Reply

done, thanks for the tips

Posted by Daniel  | September 4, 2019 at 1:42PM | Reply

In Mac, Preview > Change size. Why such a common tool does not have a shortcut? Thanks for the tip!

Posted by Terry Liu  | September 4, 2019 at 1:28PM | Reply

Did it. This one was interesting. I did it for an app I use just in the morning for security cameras and I did one for word. I think the security cameras usually are used in the morning that I may have it pop up automatically from now on with the task scheduler. I also have started trying to learn other keyboard shortcuts for outlook, chrome, google sheets – etc. Goal is to try to learn one a week.

Posted by Katie  | September 4, 2019 at 4:57AM | Reply

Done! Quick and easy archiving in OmniFocus – Perfect!

Posted by Kyoungjin Park  | September 3, 2019 at 5:16PM | Reply

Made it! It works!

Posted by Travis  | September 3, 2019 at 4:33PM | Reply

Did it – thanks!

Posted by Linhan  | September 3, 2019 at 8:31AM | Reply


Posted by Keith  | September 3, 2019 at 8:28AM | Reply


Posted by Greg  | September 3, 2019 at 8:24AM | Reply

Done – will be very helpful!

Posted by Carolyn  | September 3, 2019 at 8:12AM | Reply

Shortcut for the snipping tool. I use this dozens of time every day.

Posted by Carolyn  | September 3, 2019 at 8:11AM | Reply

Shortcut for the snipping tool. I use this dozens of time every day

Posted by Mary  | September 1, 2019 at 7:14PM | Reply

Done. That was quick and really helpful

Posted by josh  | September 1, 2019 at 4:35PM | Reply

Done! This is a really useful tip, I think I’ll have to add shortcuts slowly though so I can get used to using them and not forget which shortcut goes with which action. haha

Posted by aaron  | September 1, 2019 at 4:01PM | Reply

added a short cut for VS Code, and one to Open todoist

Posted by James  | September 1, 2019 at 7:46AM | Reply


Posted by Gayle  | August 31, 2019 at 5:52PM | Reply

Really handy feature. Along the way, I found a couple items that already had shortcuts available and I didn’t even know it!

Posted by Melch Chun  | August 31, 2019 at 2:15PM | Reply

I added keyboard shortcuts for some Things actions I do a fair amount that didn’t already have a keyboard shortcut. Feels meta, creating a keyboard shortcut for more productivity in my productivity app.

Posted by Joe  | August 31, 2019 at 1:54PM | Reply

Done. Started Word, Outlook, FireFox. Thanks.

Posted by Jodi  | August 31, 2019 at 8:49AM | Reply

I made shortcuts for my most common apps. I am an avid shortcut user in Microsoft for copy, paste, select, and new but I’m super excited to dig into this more and add more shortcuts to my routine usage.

Posted by Ana  | August 31, 2019 at 8:32AM | Reply


Posted by James  | August 31, 2019 at 8:23AM | Reply


Posted by Melissa Kinkaid  | August 31, 2019 at 6:56AM | Reply

Great tip. I used this to create a short cut to open outlook since this is the first place I go everytime i turn on my computer and also for chrome and google drive since I use that nearly every time I sit down. Thank you! LOoking forward to learning more.

Posted by Paul  | August 31, 2019 at 6:41AM | Reply

Done: I created it for Task Scheduler! :)

Bit fiddly to set up, but once you do it once, you’re good to go.


Posted by VickI G  | August 31, 2019 at 3:22AM | Reply

Done! Thank you!

Posted by Andy Cochrane  | August 31, 2019 at 3:10AM | Reply

I’m hoping to be able to do this is allowed to amend by the IT dept. I love automation.

Posted by Joan Bell  | August 31, 2019 at 2:07AM | Reply

I’m unable to complete the challenge as I’m still using macOS Sierra. Hadn’t even realized there had been an update and now there’s another one due in a couple of weeks. Pity.

Posted by Joel Thomas  | August 31, 2019 at 12:23AM | Reply

Made a shortcut to launch Chrome using the method described for Windows users this video… and then I went a few steps further to create some shortcuts for trigger various functions within Chrome too.

I know that challenge was issued to Mac users, but having those specific commands on hand seems more useful than just a global call to the browser, so I went ahead and tried my hand at it. Granted, it’s not as easy on Windows since there isn’t an equivalent OS preference pane to enter menu items by name and configure custom shortcuts, but since most browsers are platform agnostic I figured using external tools like extensions should yield the same or similar enough results on Windows (or Linux, MacOS… anywhere, really).


So now, I can make a global call from anywhere on my Windows machine by mashing together the modifier keys CTRL + SHIFT + ALT and then a C to command a new instance of Chrome to start.

Once the browser window opens, I can hit CTRL + T to open new tabs. This isn’t a custom config, Chrome natively offers this shortcut.


However, using two extensions (both named Pin Tab) I have also added the keyboard combos ALT + P as well as ALT + SHIFT + P to pin and un-pin my tabs in various ways.

1. One method simply un-pins tabs to the first index position, as is the default behavior if you did so using a trackpad or mouse pointer.

2. I added the SHIFT modifier key to the other Pin Tab extension’s shortcut because it has an option in settings to unpin tabs to the last/right-most position in the tab bar. I find both of these approaches useful since I’m usually prioritizing my browser tabs via pinned vs un-pinned as well as left to right orientation anyway.

3. I also found another extension that can return a un-pin a tab back to it’s prior position (so if you have 10 tabs and you pin the 5th tab then un-pin using this extension it returns that pinned tab back to unpinned index number 5) but this keyboard combo CTRL + UP ARROW is hard-coded and cannot be user-configured – so technically speaking this doesn’t contribute to the terms of the challenge. Still, it was an interesting use case I discovered in my research to complete this challenge and felt it worth mentioning.


Another keyboard combo I configured via the use of an extension called QuickShift Redux is ALT + SHIFT + LEFT and ALT + SHIFT + RIGHT arrow keys. This allows me to move the currently selected tab along the tab-strip much quicker than clicking and dragging with the mouse pointer, since I often accidentally dislodge tabs by dragging just above or below the vertical threshold of the tab-bar. I still occasionally use the mouse though since Chrome allows you to move multi-selected tabs and this extension supports that functionality as well, so sometimes I’ll CTRL + CLICK individual tabs like tab number 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9, or if there is a whole range of tabs I want to highlight instead it’s quicker to click tab number 5, hold down the SHIFT modifier key, then press tab number 10 so that I’ve selected every tab in between those two as well. But after that selection operation with the mouse I just move my tabs with keyboard now, and with much finer precision too I might add!

Posted by Amrei Dizon  | August 31, 2019 at 12:17AM | Reply

Done :-) Made a shortcut for all applications to convert to PDF :-)

Posted by Christina  | August 31, 2019 at 12:17AM | Reply


Posted by Andrew  | August 30, 2019 at 11:00PM | Reply

A couple of Evernote tweaks – but need to practice to refine and burn key strokes in to reflex memory!

Posted by Andrewhanks  | August 30, 2019 at 10:52PM | Reply

Nice – I had forgotten about this and now have a couple of Evernote improvements! thanks

Posted by Anthony J  | August 30, 2019 at 10:52PM | Reply

Made one for Evernote. Will need to think up some more that I’ll use, and then remember the keystrokes !

Posted by Cathy  | August 30, 2019 at 8:56PM | Reply

I’m constantly resizing images in Preview. I created a keyboard shortcut to open the resize window. Love it.
My only question is how do you remember all the shortcuts as the list grows?

Posted by Martin Richards  | August 30, 2019 at 6:30PM | Reply

Sweet! I added a bunch so far.
Open Chrome, open Gmail, open Publisher, open my synced Google Drive folder, open my Shopify admin site, open (go to) the desktop and finally a shortcut combo to shut the computer down.

I’ve had to write them all down while I get used to them! :)

Posted by Linda  | August 30, 2019 at 6:25PM | Reply

I export images from Photoshop with the TinyPing plugin all the time. I create a custom keyboard shortcut for Shift-Command-P for it.

Posted by Jason  | August 30, 2019 at 4:45PM | Reply

Done- outlook action assigned.

Posted by Michael  | August 30, 2019 at 4:40PM | Reply

Did it for suggested Omnifocus shortcut – move old data to archive.

Posted by Patricia  | August 30, 2019 at 4:11PM | Reply

Done! Created a shortcut to add a new task to Omnifocus from anywhere.

Posted by Nicol  | August 30, 2019 at 2:21PM | Reply

short cut created to open contract mgmt software.

Posted by Nicol  | August 30, 2019 at 1:57PM | Reply

day 3 done!

Posted by Nina  | August 30, 2019 at 1:46PM | Reply

Done, made one for EndNote!
I also like Ctrl + Shift + T which I discovered when I accidentally closed all my open Chrome browser tabs.

Posted by Helen  | August 30, 2019 at 1:39PM | Reply

Did it! Even in an older OS for Mac, I found it and made a download all attachments shortcut for Mail.

Posted by Kimberly Black  | August 30, 2019 at 1:34PM | Reply

Added a keyboard shortcut to move Omnifocus data to archive. Maybe I’ll remember to use it more often now. I wonder if there is a way to automate moving it with a timer. Hmmm.

Posted by Glenn Simmons Jr  | August 30, 2019 at 1:22PM | Reply

Got a shortcut to insert new graph in excel!

Posted by Mark  | August 30, 2019 at 12:49PM | Reply

I created keyboard shortcuts for Explorer, Outlook, and Skype Messenger. I use them all daily.

Posted by Eric Sinclair  | August 30, 2019 at 12:35PM | Reply

done – plus I added keyboard shortcut to the Add to Todoist service on macOS…

Posted by Katie  | August 30, 2019 at 12:23PM | Reply

Done! I used it to open my video editing software!

Posted by Colin  | August 30, 2019 at 12:12PM | Reply

I already use Text expander so I have this done for me already, but I started an automation through Automator, I am still working on. It will be awesome.

Posted by Mary  | August 30, 2019 at 12:03PM | Reply

I’m using Word for Mac. I created a shortcut for inserting a comment into a doc. Saving me so much time!!

Posted by Federico Guerra  | August 30, 2019 at 11:02AM | Reply

Ctrl + Shift + C for Chrome, Ctrl + Shift + M for Mendeley! Great tip!

Posted by Bob  | August 30, 2019 at 10:31AM | Reply

Done! I added some shortcuts to my outlook at work. CTRL+SHIFT+1 forwards to my omnifocus, CNTRL+SHIFT+2 forwards to Evernote and now CTRL+SHIFT+3 moves the note to my Reply folder where I stick my longer than 2 minute replies!

Posted by Bob  | August 30, 2019 at 10:24AM | Reply

Completed, I use evernote all the time and the shortcut works great.

Posted by Virginia  | August 30, 2019 at 9:55AM | Reply

I did Outlook, now I don’t have to mess with the mouse when I start up my computer.

Posted by Jon  | August 30, 2019 at 9:24AM | Reply

Thanks did Omnifocus inbox

Posted by Jim  | August 30, 2019 at 9:22AM | Reply


Posted by Mat  | August 30, 2019 at 9:05AM | Reply

I tried to put a shortcut to “get classic note link” for linking Evernote stuff to my tasks. Sadly, this is not working, supposedly because in the context menu this option is hidden under the normal note link command.

Posted by Cathy  | August 30, 2019 at 7:31AM | Reply

Done – quicker than scrolling through for programs

Posted by Keith  | August 30, 2019 at 5:43AM | Reply

Done. I created a shortcut for a speech analytics tool we use in work. Saving me several clicks!

Posted by Alexander Nielsen  | August 30, 2019 at 5:18AM | Reply

All done!

Posted by Isaak  | August 30, 2019 at 4:57AM | Reply

All done!

Posted by Eric  | August 30, 2019 at 4:57AM | Reply

Did it! (a little late) I actually did this on the first day. CTRL-SHFT-E for Explorer to get my folders! It helps so much!!

Posted by Markus  | August 30, 2019 at 4:44AM | Reply

Completed and like it!

Posted by Cindi Gay  | August 30, 2019 at 3:50AM | Reply

Did it, but I am doing it again…..

Posted by Mascha  | August 30, 2019 at 3:33AM | Reply

I created a shortcut that opens Gmail in my browser. I already had a bookmark for it in my bookmarks bar, but then I always had to open a new Tab first in my browser, and then click on the bookmark. I often forgot to create a new Tab, so I first had to go back to the page I was on, then open a new tab and then click on the Gmail-bookmark. By starting the Gmail-bookmark via a shortcut, I noticed that it automatically opens it on a new Tab in my Chrome browser. Excellent!

Posted by Steve Finegan  | August 30, 2019 at 3:14AM | Reply


Posted by Travis Firth  | August 30, 2019 at 2:44AM | Reply


Posted by Kimi Okada  | August 30, 2019 at 2:26AM | Reply

Done! I made a shortcut for “Copy as Link” in OmniFocus. This will come in handy.

Posted by Ellane  | August 30, 2019 at 2:19AM | Reply

Done! Very powerful time saver, thanks.

Posted by Jennifer  | August 30, 2019 at 1:08AM | Reply

I set up a shortcut to open Word and my journal file. I already had a macro that puts in the date and time.

Posted by ismael adekunle  | August 30, 2019 at 1:03AM | Reply

DONE FOR keyboard shortcut for system preferences for mac

Posted by Justus  | August 30, 2019 at 12:50AM | Reply

I made a shortcut to export a text file from the application TextEdit on the Mac. Very nice indeed. From today I will pay attention if I could use more of these shortcuts.

Posted by Daran  | August 30, 2019 at 12:43AM | Reply


Posted by Jaymie Horak  | August 30, 2019 at 12:33AM | Reply

Done – with chrome! So cool.

Posted by Ashala Faircrest  | August 30, 2019 at 12:28AM | Reply

I did 4 of them – 1 each to start Word, Excel, Evernote, and Google Chrome. Amazing how easy it is!

Posted by Craig arnoldt  | August 30, 2019 at 12:25AM | Reply

Now ChromiEdge loads even faster!

Posted by Lisa Young  | August 30, 2019 at 12:12AM | Reply

I made a short cut to open a note in a new tab in Evernote!

Posted by Juliet Grossman  | August 29, 2019 at 11:48PM | Reply

Woot, added an Evernote share shortcut! Thank you:-)

Posted by Adelle  | August 29, 2019 at 11:47PM | Reply

I did it! It was much easier than it seemed and will be so helpful.

Posted by SP  | August 29, 2019 at 11:46PM | Reply

Combined the “Create PDF” shortcut with Hazel function of renaming and filing away the document in a “REFERENCE LIST” file in Dropbox. And as Thanh said, the time taken to set this up is well worth it as it saves hassle and time many times in the future.

Posted by Joe  | August 29, 2019 at 11:44PM | Reply


Posted by Paul  | August 29, 2019 at 11:38PM | Reply

Done. Did one for Evernote. I need to think about more uses.

Posted by Jose  | August 29, 2019 at 11:36PM | Reply

Created a shortcut to copy the OTP and paste it in my login page

Posted by Mike Peterson  | August 29, 2019 at 11:31PM | Reply

So I did this one, but the story of the day is I spent way too much time tracking down an app that as part of an update added a shortcut which conflicted with a different shortcut

Posted by ryan  | August 29, 2019 at 11:16PM | Reply

I did it!

Posted by Amrita Basu (Misra)  | August 29, 2019 at 10:14PM | Reply

Done for Google Chrome. Thanks for is

Posted by Newton Mota  | August 29, 2019 at 10:10PM | Reply

Done! I choose to follow the Mindnode suggestion since I use the app a lot in college. :)

Posted by Rick Salisbury  | August 29, 2019 at 9:48PM | Reply

Just the beginning. I have Win 10 at work and although some apps are locked down I was able to create to create a shortcut for my remote access app. Now to plan semantic shortcuts that I don’t forget over vacation

Posted by Keith  | August 29, 2019 at 9:28PM | Reply


Posted by Gerd  | August 29, 2019 at 9:18PM | Reply

Nice tip on shortcuts. Used it for a shortcut for Outlook.

Posted by Morgan  | August 29, 2019 at 9:13PM | Reply


Posted by Dan B  | August 29, 2019 at 9:11PM | Reply

My favorite thing to do with the configurable keyboard shortcuts is to map similar actions to the same shortcut across different apps. I’ve used ⌘⇧L as the “Highlight” shortcut for ages; just added it to PDF Expert.

Posted by KC  | August 29, 2019 at 8:53PM | Reply

Did it! Created shortcut to insert time and date into Omnifocus tasks.

Posted by Moses Kaulaity  | August 29, 2019 at 8:39PM | Reply

I did it! I actually added a “Goal” shortcut in Ulysses to create a help me create a 750 word count goal :D :D

Posted by Kim blair  | August 29, 2019 at 8:14PM | Reply

Loving everyday of time saving tricks! Thank you!

Posted by STEPHEN COX  | August 29, 2019 at 7:49PM | Reply

I’ve been doing this for a long time. Ctrl option cmd O to send to Omnifocus inbox is a classic. I make regular use of short cut keys to fire off Alfred workflows. One of my workflows is ctrl option command W for Web Development. This launches iTerm2, WebStorm, Chrome, Firefox, and opens my Github page in a new browser tab.

Posted by Gerard Geiger  | August 29, 2019 at 7:18PM | Reply

done. I understand the new version of IOS to be released this fall includes even more functionality in Shortcuts. Looking forward to that. Great feature.

Posted by Ovi  | August 29, 2019 at 6:27PM | Reply

Done, created a few custom keyboard shortcuts. Useful as always. Thanks!

Posted by Roy Michael Allinson  | August 29, 2019 at 6:02PM | Reply


Posted by Teresa  | August 29, 2019 at 6:00PM | Reply

Created one for Word and for file explorer. File explorer I would usually just open from the taskbar; however, I often need multiple iterations in order to move files around, and it can be a pain to open more than one quickly.

Posted by Roger Bussell  | August 29, 2019 at 5:54PM | Reply

Done. Added a shortcut for toggling paged mode in Ulysses.

Posted by Tessa  | August 29, 2019 at 5:47PM | Reply

Done. Always wanted to know how to do this.

Posted by Dennis  | August 29, 2019 at 5:46PM | Reply

Did it set up Quicken and Wordperfect

Posted by Erzsebet  | August 29, 2019 at 5:42PM | Reply

Done. I added a keyboard shortcut to Chrome.

Posted by Johannes  | August 29, 2019 at 5:38PM | Reply

Done. I start cmder using a shortcut (well, I actually use a macro key) whenever I need to ssh into my home gitlab or my grav server.

Posted by Christian  | August 29, 2019 at 5:15PM | Reply

I did it!

Posted by Rob de Vries  | August 29, 2019 at 5:07PM | Reply

Great exercise. Created shortcuts related to MS Outlook and MS OneNote. I needed a combination of Automator and Keyboard shortcuts.

Posted by Dale  | August 29, 2019 at 5:05PM | Reply

First tried “Save Page As…” in Firefox but that did not work. Done (works!) with “Save Attachments…” in Mail.

Posted by marian phillips  | August 29, 2019 at 5:00PM | Reply

Done! Set up shortcuts for Chrome and Quicken. Quicken actually seemed to boot faster…

Posted by Vicky  | August 29, 2019 at 4:58PM | Reply

Thanks for the challenge! I implemented a simple shortcut on day 3, but day 4 was key: I ORANIZED MY FILES!!!

thanks, I needed it!

Posted by Ralph Hershkowitz  | August 29, 2019 at 4:48PM | Reply

Done. Tks.

Posted by Bryan Thompson  | August 29, 2019 at 4:45PM | Reply

Had fun with this. I have always done CMD+P **twice** to print to PDF. Just managed through this blog piece to shave off some duplication. Nice. Thanks guys!

Posted by Gloria-Jean Brown  | August 29, 2019 at 4:31PM | Reply

DONE: Too cool ~ Set Ctrl + Shift + Q for Quicken; and Ctrl + Shift + E for Evernote.

Posted by Andrew Fallows  | August 29, 2019 at 3:56PM | Reply

I’ve been doing this for ages and I love it. I used this prompt to finally set one up for Notion, which has completely decimated Evernote for me.

Posted by Aneesh Ghosh  | August 29, 2019 at 3:55PM | Reply

Done. In safari –> Export as PDF… by Shortcut “Cmd + E” 😃

Posted by Chris  | August 29, 2019 at 3:55PM | Reply

Updated screenshot shortcut to utilize ShareX for better screenshots. Also utilize PhraseExpress which allows for both text expansion and launching of programs.

Posted by Peter  | August 29, 2019 at 3:51PM | Reply

Did shortcut for Chrome

Posted by Daniel R  | August 29, 2019 at 3:48PM | Reply

Done for today. I kept it simple and used the split PDF files since I will definitely use it. I’m racking my brain trying to figure out what else I can use this for, as I know there have been multiple instances of me wishing I could create a shortcut. Oh well, at least I have the resources to create another shortcut when it pops into my head again or I start working on something that will benefit from this.

Posted by Bob Skattum  | August 29, 2019 at 3:13PM | Reply

Done — had to choose first level Share Note from Evernote — not the second level More Sharing > Send an Email…

Posted by Gordon  | August 29, 2019 at 2:50PM | Reply

Created a keyboard shortcut to open OneNote, which is my note taking app.

Posted by Tor  | August 29, 2019 at 2:30PM | Reply

Added a shortcut in (for) OmniFocus to copy the current task as link saves me a lot of hassle …

Posted by Elizabeth Taylor  | August 29, 2019 at 2:16PM | Reply


Posted by Jeremy Brown  | August 29, 2019 at 2:04PM | Reply

Done! I created a duplicate tab shortcut for Chrome, a function I use regularly.

Posted by Andy  | August 29, 2019 at 2:02PM | Reply

Shortcuts created to open Firefox browser, calculator, Trello and Snipping tool. It’s a bit slow and when I want to reassign a previously used but now free key combination it doesn’t work anymore…
But helpful to know how to accelerate opening applications.

Posted by Kimberly Charron  | August 29, 2019 at 2:00PM | Reply

Done. I set up custom keyboard shortcuts to launch Color Cop and Word.

Posted by Cassandra  | August 29, 2019 at 1:58PM | Reply

I am also thwarted by my IT dept in creating shortcuts, but I had never heard of using the Win+# shortcut to open apps that are pinned on my task bar. Got them rearranged the way I like them and I’ve already started using the short cuts. Thanks!

Posted by Josh  | August 29, 2019 at 1:52PM | Reply

done – several office applications

Posted by Bill Pasierb  | August 29, 2019 at 1:49PM | Reply

Did shortcut for OneNote, Chrome, and Word.

Posted by Lori  | August 29, 2019 at 1:38PM | Reply

Added a shortcut to take me to my custom Planning perspective in OmniFocus!

Posted by Doug Warren  | August 29, 2019 at 1:30PM | Reply


Posted by Giacomo Pasini  | August 29, 2019 at 1:22PM | Reply

Done! I’ve set up on my WinPC various keyboard shortcuts:
Ctrl + Shift + T starts my desktop Toggl application
Ctrl + Shift + X starts Excel
Ctrl + Shift + W starts Word
Ctrl + Shift + S starts the Snippet Tool that I use a lot for screenshots and works very fine with Ctrl + C to copy.
On the long run seconds saved become hours saved every year!

Posted by Zaf Syrras  | August 29, 2019 at 1:15PM | Reply

done the omnifocus shortcut

Posted by Gordon Lanpher  | August 29, 2019 at 12:59PM | Reply

I created a short cut to a program I open multiple times daily.

Posted by Sharon  | August 29, 2019 at 12:56PM | Reply

Created shortcut to PowerPoint.

Posted by Judy  | August 29, 2019 at 12:37PM | Reply

Done. Shortcuts to open email. OneNote and chrome

Posted by Katherine  | August 29, 2019 at 12:29PM | Reply

Done. Made a shortcut so I can open the program that I set a reminder for yesterday.

Posted by John  | August 29, 2019 at 12:25PM | Reply


Posted by Jesse  | August 29, 2019 at 12:12PM | Reply

Done! Added a shortcut for Evernote

Posted by Vaughn  | August 29, 2019 at 12:09PM | Reply

Done – hotkey to open outlook

Posted by Lee Z.  | August 29, 2019 at 12:06PM | Reply

Nice, done on Windows! I setup the CTRL-Shift-T shortcut to launch my copy of Todoist web version, which I often consult and then close throughout the day.

Posted by Brian  | August 29, 2019 at 12:02PM | Reply

created print to PDF – thanks!

Posted by Chris  | August 29, 2019 at 11:59AM | Reply

Done! Created a keyboard shortcut to open notepad++

Posted by Katherine Brown  | August 29, 2019 at 11:56AM | Reply

I’m definitely limited by my lack of Admin controls – but again I’ll do this with my personal mac!
I set up my log in to include launching Outlook and checking my new emails – this will definitely help me out!

I can’t believe how much I learned about Mac & Outlook during these sessions! I feel like I knew so little now.

Posted by Erica  | August 29, 2019 at 11:51AM | Reply

I did one, but couldn’t figure out what I was hoping to do, which is to export a page on the web to pdf. So I created a shortcut to open the print dialog box from the browser instead. If any ideas, let me know! I’m using OS Sierra.

Posted by Linda Rallo  | August 29, 2019 at 11:44AM | Reply

Done! Thanks!!

Posted by Matthew Baran  | August 29, 2019 at 11:44AM | Reply


Posted by Richard  | August 29, 2019 at 11:37AM | Reply

Done. Bring it on!!

Posted by Robyn  | August 29, 2019 at 11:15AM | Reply

Done! Made a shortcut for Open Off as I don’t create PDFs very often so won’t use that one.

Posted by Gerry Ann  | August 29, 2019 at 11:13AM | Reply

Created shortcut to move file when I’m done with them in PDF Pen..

Posted by Melissa Dease  | August 29, 2019 at 11:12AM | Reply

I added a shortcut key to a sharepoint site I use frequently, although I’m not really sure that it’s so much more useful than a shortcut I have to click on. I’ll have to put some more thought into how often I do other tasks where this would be more helpful.

Posted by Noah R  | August 29, 2019 at 10:57AM | Reply

Done!!! This is the one I was most excited for. I regularly use the (Delete…) feature in Excel in which I need to shift cells up, down, etc… and this one will save me a few 100 clicks every 10 weeks or so. I’m am so thankful for the knowledge of this one automation piece itself. All of the others are just a bonus for me. I use the free CheatSheet app ( to regularly search for new to me shortcuts, but learning how to create my own is a game changer!

Posted by Marc  | August 29, 2019 at 10:50AM | Reply

did it!

Posted by Mats  | August 29, 2019 at 10:40AM | Reply

Addes shortcut for MS Powerpoint.

Posted by Jim  | August 29, 2019 at 10:33AM | Reply

All Done! :)

Posted by Abigail  | August 29, 2019 at 10:29AM | Reply


Posted by Jesica  | August 29, 2019 at 10:26AM | Reply

Done! I now have shortcuts for Chrome and other proprietary software applications. :)

Posted by Sandie  | August 29, 2019 at 10:20AM | Reply

I “borrowed” your PDF shortcut because I will use it regularly. Now I’m thinking of many others I’ll add. Just need to keep a good list of shortcuts so I can quickly refer to them until they are memorized!

Posted by Philipp  | August 29, 2019 at 10:11AM | Reply

I second on the WIN+1,2,3 shortcut, all of my systems have the same order of main programs

Posted by Adam Hill  | August 29, 2019 at 10:05AM | Reply

Done for a few!

Posted by Paul  | August 29, 2019 at 9:57AM | Reply

Done! Opens a specific URL in Safari

Posted by Ian  | August 29, 2019 at 9:57AM | Reply

Done! I created a keyboard shortcut to make a new Area in Things.

Posted by Jodie  | August 29, 2019 at 9:52AM | Reply

Discord keyboard shortcut made! Now to remember what it is and to use it!!!

Posted by Jessica Ryan  | August 29, 2019 at 9:48AM | Reply

All done! Set up a shortcuts Chrome and Evernote. #timesaver

Posted by Corey Verdusco  | August 29, 2019 at 9:47AM | Reply

Added a keyboard shortcut to my design program.

Posted by Tanya  | August 29, 2019 at 9:44AM | Reply

I did it, however, I had to try different combinations before it worked.

Posted by Tommy Williams  | August 29, 2019 at 9:40AM | Reply

I’ve been doing this in various ways for years. I have two levels:

(1) Apps I use all the time and want to get to quickly are pinned in positions 1-10 on my taskbar. I can launch or bring any of those to the front with Win+: Win-1 for the 1st, Win-2 for 2nd, up to Win-0 for the 10th. I can also use Alt-Win+ to bring up the jumplist for each of the apps, so that I can easily get to recent or pinned documents for each app.

(2) I use AutoHotKey for a lot of more advanced automation. For apps I want to launch and switch to with a command, but don’t use quite often enough to put on the taskbar, I have set up a trigger in AutoHotKey (Ctrl+`) that then listens for the next two keys I type, and launches the app. I have things like Beyond Compare as “bc” and LinqPad as “lp”

In honor of this challenge, I added another app (Azure DataStudio) to the AutoHotKey list. I have been using it more lately than SQL Server Management Studio.

Posted by Lisa notes  | August 29, 2019 at 9:38AM | Reply

It worked! :) I created a Mail command to move email to my “To do” folder. Now I’ll be rethinking all my repetitive commands and seeing what other shortcuts I can create.

I absolutely live by keyboard shortcuts. I spent a year learning one new shortcut every two weeks and it was revolutionary. I don’t remember all of them now, but I do remember the ones that matter the most.

Posted by Bill Johnson  | August 29, 2019 at 9:32AM | Reply

Added shortcuts for Outlook, Chrome and Evernote!

Posted by JL  | August 29, 2019 at 9:27AM | Reply

Nice! I made a shortcut to create an OF task from a selected item in DT3! It was a long time I needed that!

Posted by Trevor  | August 29, 2019 at 9:25AM | Reply

Option SemiColon – not that obvious in place of three periods.
Export to pdf

Posted by Tiffany  | August 29, 2019 at 9:25AM | Reply

The less mouse work then better! Feeling like an million bucks after hitting ctrl + shift + c for chrome. I knew I used chrome a lot but you don’t realize how many times until you’re consciously remembering to use your spiffy new shortcut. Going to work on a few more…brb.

Posted by Christian Handler  | August 29, 2019 at 9:19AM | Reply

Export to PDF – that is a really helpful shortcut!

Posted by Peter  | August 29, 2019 at 9:15AM | Reply

I use this all the time for many years for frequently used menu items in different applications (Mail, iCal, Screenflow, OmniFocus and some more). The shortcuts are so engrained in my workflows that I have to “toggle a switch” working on a computer of somebody else.
One of the shortcuts I used in the past, but is apparently not possible anymore, was the “COMMAND+P” and then “P” again (I learned this shortcut a long time ago from MacSparky). “COMMAND+P” still goes to the print menu, but I have to select “save as PDF” to print the document as PDF. I really miss this shortcut.

Posted by Leo Gift  | August 29, 2019 at 9:15AM | Reply

Done for chrome

Posted by Shelly  | August 29, 2019 at 9:09AM | Reply

Done! I set up a shortcut for Outlook and Chrome. This is going to save me so much time!

Posted by CG  | August 29, 2019 at 9:08AM | Reply

Created a shortcut to launch the calculator on Mac!

Posted by Rubén Maldonado  | August 29, 2019 at 9:07AM | Reply

Great! I just created two shortcuts for my main comunicación apps, Microsoft teams and Outlook. Can’t believe that the I didn’t this before.

Posted by Sushma Manava  | August 29, 2019 at 9:04AM | Reply

Done, did it for chrome and outlook

Posted by Jacob Wall  | August 29, 2019 at 9:03AM | Reply

I set up a shortcut for Chrome, and – while I was at it – I set Chrome to open to the most used pages. However, I think moving forward I’m going to have Chrome launched by task scheduler about 30 min before I normally use it – that should save me a couple of minutes at the beginning of my work sessions each day. I’ll keep an eye open for other keyboard shortcuts that will come in handy.

Posted by Misti  | August 29, 2019 at 8:57AM | Reply

Done! Created keyboard shortcuts for Chrome and Quickbooks.

Posted by Nicky  | August 29, 2019 at 8:56AM | Reply

Did it!
Applied this after Day 1 session with opening a program used regularly & just now created a few more speedy keyboard shortcuts to other regularly opened software – appreciate less mouse work!

Posted by Alice  | August 29, 2019 at 8:48AM | Reply

Created a shortcut for Audacity, an audio editing software I use a lot. I tried creating another shortcut for a radio traffic software I use only to discover that it’s not possible: another reason to get rid of that program! 🤣

Posted by Rafal  | August 29, 2019 at 8:45AM | Reply

Done. Set up a shortcut to change language in OneNote. :)

Posted by Mark  | August 29, 2019 at 8:45AM | Reply

added shortcut for devonthink

Posted by Joshua  | August 29, 2019 at 8:43AM | Reply

Love the suggested Omnifocus shorcut! Done!

Posted by Scott  | August 29, 2019 at 8:42AM | Reply

I love this! Created my shortcut for outlook that I’ve always wanted

Posted by Don Pavlik  | August 29, 2019 at 8:38AM | Reply

I have completed this, added the short cut to my coding editor. This is nice, but I tend to use an app launcher and launch my application by their name, mainly do it this way because I tend to forget all the keyboard shortcuts I have already.

Posted by Joe Foltz  | August 29, 2019 at 8:38AM | Reply

I created a shortcut in ReadKit to save things into Evernote.

Posted by Rob Blankenship  | August 29, 2019 at 8:36AM | Reply

Easy – thanks!

Posted by Sherry  | August 29, 2019 at 8:23AM | Reply

I set up firefox with a keyboard shortcut, but noticed something interesting. When starting to type in “ctrl”, it defaults to “Ctrl + Alt” not “Ctrl + Shift” in the version of windows I’m using.

Posted by D. Biswas  | August 29, 2019 at 8:18AM | Reply

Hello Efficient people,

Finished my tasks. Set up Chrome, Evernote and PDF reader with Keyboard shortcuts.

Thanks for sharing the details.


Posted by Sharon  | August 29, 2019 at 8:15AM | Reply

Yes, this will save me a lot of time. I screen shot a lot and I also start Word and Excel a lot while I’m working in other places. This will speed the process up quite a bit. I set one up from Chrome and Excel.

Posted by Deb Biswas  | August 29, 2019 at 8:15AM | Reply

Hey there,

Finished today’s challenge. Created 1 shortcut on the first day itself with Chrome browser.
Today created 2 more – with Evernote and PDF

Posted by amos odiwuor abuto  | August 29, 2019 at 8:13AM | Reply

done very cool i tell you

Posted by Theo Bell  | August 29, 2019 at 8:13AM | Reply

Added a keyboard shortcut to create copy a Quip document!

Posted by Oliver Saunders  | August 29, 2019 at 8:00AM | Reply

Great – this is a real timesaver I wish I had known how to do this when I was writing my dissertation earlier this year! Making footnotes in word just got a lot easier.

Posted by Teejay  | August 29, 2019 at 7:53AM | Reply


I’m a huge fan of keyboard shortcuts too … saves time reaching to the mouse, scrolling to the right place, double-clicking, etc.

I regularly use Windows+1 (or 2, 3, 4, etc.) to launch the apps in that position on my task bar. I setup CTRL+SHIFT+S to launch Windows Snippet because I frequently take screenshots for documentation purposes!

Posted by Susannah Jaggers  | August 29, 2019 at 7:52AM | Reply


Posted by Katie Santos  | August 29, 2019 at 7:50AM | Reply

Just shortcut to Evernote! Thanks for this as somehow about once a week EN disappears from my system tray. Still having trouble with shortcuts in IOS…

Posted by Jo Smetryns  | August 29, 2019 at 7:46AM | Reply

✅ Done!

Posted by Jeremy  | August 29, 2019 at 7:44AM | Reply

Added a shortcut for Adobe acrobat pro and Chrome.

Posted by Shaun Barlow  | August 29, 2019 at 7:20AM | Reply

Added a keyboard shortcut to the Zettlekasten app I use for information management, this is hopefully gong to make me use t more often

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