Useful Computer Keyboard Shortcuts to Make Online Life Easier

Become a pro at productivity! Keyboard shortcuts every college student, blogger, and business professional should know. I admit it. I'm a tech nerd. I'm the first to download new software and I love knowing little gadget tricks. Seeing as I spend a majority of my day online / on a computer, productivity hacks are my best friend. This is especially true when it comes to blogging or any type of digital marketing. So today I've decided to share with you some of my favorite computer keyboard shortcuts, as well as list a few that I'd like to begin using. Having all these shortcuts in one spot is great for referencing when you're trying to build the habit of remembering them ;)

Keyboard Shortcuts for Mac

(I put an asterisk* by my most used shortcuts!)

*CutCommand ⌘ + X

*CopyCommand ⌘ + C

*PasteCommand ⌘ + V

*Paste without formattingCommand ⌘ + Shift + V

*UndoCommand ⌘ + Z

*Redo | Command ⌘ + Y

*Boldface selected textCommand ⌘ + B

*Italicize selected text |Command ⌘ + I

Underline selected textCommand ⌘ + U

Select AllCommand ⌘ + A

FindCommand ⌘ + F

Hide the windows of the front app | Command ⌘ + H

Open an new document / windowCommand ⌘ + N

SaveCommand ⌘ + S

*QuitCommand ⌘ + Q

Force QuitCommand ⌘ + Option + Esc

Switch between open appsCommand ⌘ + Tab

*ScreenshotCommand ⌘ + Shift + 3

Screenshot a selectionCommand ⌘ + Shift + 4

Force Mac restartCommand ⌘ + Control + Power

Delete the word to the leftOption + Delete

*Define a word | Command ⌘ + Control + D

*Go to topCommand ⌘ + Up Arrow

*Go to bottomCommand ⌘ + Down Arrow

Lower volume in smaller increments | Option + Shift + F11

Raise volume in smaller increments | Option + Shift + F12

*Insert an emojiCommand ⌘ + Control + Space

Empty trashCommand ⌘ + Shift + Delete

Become a pro at productivity! Keyboard shortcuts every college student, blogger, and business professional should know.

Keyboard Shortcuts for Windows

CutCtrl + X

Copy | Ctrl + C

PasteCtrl + V

Paste without formattingCtrl + Shift + V

UndoCtrl + Z

Redo | Ctrl + Y

Boldface selected textCtrl + B

Italicize selected text |Ctrl + I

Underline selected textCtrl + U

Select AllCtrl + A

FindCtrl + F

Hide the windows of the front app | Ctrl + F4

Open an new document / windowCtrl + N

SaveCtrl + S

QuitAlt + F4

Force QuitAlt + F4

Switch between open appsAlt + Tab

ScreenshotPrint Screen

Screenshot a window | Alt + Print Screen

Delete the word to the leftCtrl + Backspace

Go to topHome

Go to bottom | End

Empty recycle bin | B

I hope you found these useful! :)

What shortcuts do you use and love?

10+ MORE Must Have Apps for College Students

 
 

*There are referral links present in this post. All opinions within this post are 100% honest – I only recommend apps that I personally use and love!

UPDATED FEBRUARY 8, 2017: A few months ago I wrote a post on 10+ must have apps every college student should download. That post became quite a hit on social media and I've been wanting to feature a few more apps that I love. So today I'm back with 10+ MORE must have apps for college students! Each of the following apps and resources are ones that I personally use and recommend to any busy person looking to maximize productivity and stay organized while having fun at the same time.

 

RefME (Free / Website)

I've been using RefME for all my papers this semester, and I don't know why I didn't use it before! It's such an amazing resource! Nobody likes figuring out how to cite a source. RefME does all the hard stuff and lets you collect sources fast and keep them organized in groups. You can either search for the reference title, author, url, etc., or simply fill in the boxes with the appropriate information, select what citation style you need, and voilá! A perfect bibliography/works cited is born! Some other great features are that it allows you to export your bibliography directly into a Word document and shows you the correct inline citation to use. With their app, you can even scan book/journal barcodes to get citations. How easy it that?

 

Khan Academy (Free / iPhone & iPad, AndroidWebsite)

Khan Academy lets you learn almost anything for free. Videos and visuals help solidify concepts that would otherwise be forgotten and allows you to master concepts you didn't catch in class.

 

Elevate (Free / iPhone & iPad, Android)

Elevate was selected as Apple's 2014 app of the year, and it rightly deserves that award! The app helps "train" your mind for the skills you need the most, such as retention, visualization, focus, comprehension, etc. All it takes is 5-10 minutes a day a few days of the week and you'll see your progress chart go up over time. The games are fun and even addicting!

 

Coggle (Free / Website)

Mind mapping is the new brain dump. It is such a useful way to think about new ideas and simplify complex processes. You can use it for school projects, your business ideas, product ideas, blogging, or just your daily life in general. I like using Coggle because it's web and cloud based and allows you to sync your mind maps with Google Drive. 

 

Printer Pro ($6.99 / iPhone & iPad)

Before you run away after looking at the price, let me just tell you that this one is definitely worth the money. Printer Pro allows you to print anything–documents, emails, web pages–directly from your iPhone or iPad. Advanced printing options such as print orientation, scaling, number of copies, and even paper size give you desktop class printing on a small scale device. Best of all, Printer Pro is compatible with Wi-Fi enabled printers as well as USB ones. No more saving documents to the cloud in order to print them later on a computer!

 

Influenster (Free/ Website)

Influenster lets you flex your social media influence by providing you with free, full-sized product sampling through exclusive VoxBox campaigns. To get selected for a free VoxBox filled with amazing products, simply connect your social media accounts and begin reviewing products to unlock badges. The higher your influence score, the more likely you'll get selected.

 

Spotify (Free / iPhone & iPad, Android, Website)

Spotify is my go-to music player for a few reasons. One, I love having the ability to choose what songs to stream and add them to playlists at the same time. Two, they have a great browsing selection where you can discover tons of new artists and songs based on your mood. And now, you can get 50% off Spotify Premium for students. Say goodbye to annoying ads.

 

Quizlet (Free / iPhone & iPad, Android, Website)

I've tried many flashcard apps and I have to say, this one is the best. Their app user interface beautiful and functional but the real power lies in the website. Quizlet allows you to create "sets" of flashcards that you can share with other students who are studying for the same quiz or test. It's not just flashcards either; different games help make studying fun.

 

Avast Mac Security (Free / Website)

It’s been said that Macs are immune to viruses and other things that are common on Windows. Because of that, many Mac users never even think to install antivirus protection. But that’s not the case anymore. Turns out, it’s not impossible to create a virus that affects a Mac; it’s just more difficult than with Windows because of nature of OS X and its security model.  I highly recommend that you install Avast Free Antivirus. It’s free, simple to install, and updates automatically to keep protection current.

I hope these apps are as helpful to you as they are to me! Don't forget to check out the other 10+ apps! Enjoy! :)

What are your must have apps?

How to Set Up a Professional Email for Your Blog

Make your blog more professional by using a business email. #blogtips #blogging *There are referral links present in this post. All opinions within this post are always 100% honest.

Deciding to take blogging seriously is a big step that involves a lot of time and commitment. You begin to set up all the "prerequisites": a domain name, hosting, blog design, business cards, accepting sponsors/advertisers, going to conferences, etc. There's one thing that's usually overlooked though.

A professional email.

This is especially helpful if you want to collaborate with other companies. Some opportunities became available to me simply because I had my own professional email. For example, brittany(at)thekardiablog.com is much more professional sounding than thekardiablog@gmail.com.

[Tweet "A custom email can amp up the professionalism of your blog. via @britthouchins"]

There are two ways to set up and use your own professional email. *Please note that you must own your own domain to be able to use a custom email.

1. If you self-host your blog, many web hosts such as Bluehost allow you to set up different email accounts using your domain name by clicking the Email tab. I recommend setting up two or three: hello@yourblog.com, yourname@yourblog.com, and sponsor@yourblog.com. You can then check the webmail by clicking on Check Webmail on the home page (if you're using Bluehost).

Set up a professional email

2. The second method (and the one I highly recommend!) is using Google Apps for Work. Google Apps for Work enable you to use the Gmail interface with your own custom email. There is a small fee ($5/month), but you can try it for free for 30 days to see if you like it. This is definitely worth the money though!

When you sign up, I recommend signing up with yourname@yourblog.com at first. This is what will become the primary email. You can set up other emails later on (hello@, sponsor@, etc.) After you sign up, you'll need to verify that you own your domain by calling the phone number that is provided and have the support team walk you through some steps. It's super quick and easy!

Once everything is set up, you can add more emails by going to your admin page (admin.google.com) and clicking on Users, then your name. Now click on Account and a sidebar will appear. Scroll down to Aliases and click Add an Alias. Whatever email alias you enter here will automatically be forwarded to yourname@. This way, all your replies will be sent through the same account.

Set up a professional email

Easy, isn't it? :) This is just one simple step you can take to amp up the professionalism of your blog!

What do you think about having your own professional email?

blog-signature

Blogging Basics from The Kardia

8 Ways to Make Your Mac Run Faster

8 ways to make your mac run faster!When I first got my Macbook Pro for college last year, I Googled everything I could about tips, tricks and changes I could do to personalize my computer. One of my biggest worries was that after a few years of owning this baby, it would eventually become slower. Little did I know that there are a bunch of steps you can take to ensure that your computer will be good shape - and even cause your Mac run faster - in a few years.

Delete apps and files

The number one thing that clogs up your computer are files and applications. Do a quick audit of what you have on your computer and delete anything you don't use or need anymore. Put files in Dropbox, iCloud, or Evernote. Delete files from your "Downloads". Organize what you have and keep the desktop free from clutter. Having excess items on the desktop can result in slower loading times due to the fact that the desktop is the first page that loads! Also, don't forget to empty the trash bin after you've dumped a bunch of items in there!

Restart your computer at least twice a week

I'm one of those people who almost never shuts off my Mac. I almost always have it sleeping. One day I realized my computer was lagging more than usual. I did a little research and found out that your Mac has a few tools that it uses automatically to help maintain itself. Some of these tools only run during shutdown and startup. Get into the habit of powering down your computer at least twice a week. A simple restart before you go to bed each night works too!

Quit, don't just close, apps

Most apps don't completely quit when you click the red button. The application continues to run in the background in an effort to start up again quickly. If you're done using the app for a bit, quit it completely. Command Q is a quick shortcut. Or you can right click on the app icon and click Quit.

8 ways to make your Mac run faster

Manage your startup items

When you start up your Mac, a lot of things load up in the background. Get a faster Mac startup by removing unnecessary apps. Go to System Preferences > Users and Groups > then click on your username. Now click on Login Items, click on the name of the application you don't need at startup, and then click the "-" sign located at the bottom left to remove the app from the list. The less apps on the list, the better!

8 ways to make your Mac run faster

Keep your computer cool

A hot computer is a suffering computer. If you feel your computer getting warm or hear the fans turn on louder, place your computer in a place where it can get good ventilation. On a Mac, the vents are in the back by the hinge.

If you use your laptop on your lap, in bed, or on top of any sort of blanket, place the laptop on a lap tray, box, or something else that is flat and sturdy. Overheating your computer can be very damaging to the hardware, so make an effort to keep it cool.

Install the FlashControl Chrome Extension

Another way to keep your computer from doing more work and possibly overheating is to control Adobe Flash. A lot of embedded videos use Flash, and while it's not a bad thing, the content can sometimes be annoying. Installing a Flash block extension allows you to control what you want to play.

For example, if you went to a website and there's some ad content on the side that uses Flash, it won't load. But if there's a video somewhere that you do want to see, all you need to do is simply click on the blank space and the video will load! Blocking Flash essentially blocks unnecessary loading that slows down your browser.

Delete the cache and cookies from your internet browser

If your browser is slow, everything else seems slow too. Delete the cache and cookies every once and awhile to give the system a nice refresh.

Install virus and malware protection (for free!)

Free Mac security and antivirus protection.

It's been said that Macs are immune to viruses and other things that are common on Windows. Because of that, many Mac users never even think to install antivirus protection. But that's not the case anymore.

Turns out, it's not impossible to create a virus that affects a Mac; it's just more difficult than with Windows because of nature of OS X and its security model. Think of all the hackers who would spend their time creating a Mac virus, just to be able to prove that Macs are vulnerable.

Also, security issues might allow some form of attack, even if it's not in the form of a virus. Something might erase your data or gain access to your personal information. Either way, having some form of protection will ensure that you're taking the right measures to protect both you and your Mac.

 I have Avast Free Antivirus installed on my Mac, and I love it! It's free, simple to install, and updates automatically to keep protection current. I encourage you to use it!

What do you do to keep your computer in good condition?

blog-signature

Free Color Block iPhone Wallpapers

Free color block iPhone wallpapers in 3 different colors I am super picky when it comes to my phone backgrounds. I always find photos or backgrounds with too much going on really distracting. They compete with my apps and look messy in general. While I change my lock screen photo quite frequently, my home screen generally stays the same. I like minimalist backgrounds with just a simple pattern or a few colors. I got tired of my plain pink one yesterday and decided to create a few free color block iphone wallpapers for others to enjoy! I designed them in three different colors: pink/gray, peach/orange, and teal/blue. You can download them below! Just tap to open in a new window, then tap and hold to save to your photos. Enjoy!

Pink/Gray: iPhone 4 & 4s, iPhone 5, 5s, & 5c, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus

Peach/Orange: iPhone 4 & 4s, iPhone 5, 5s, & 5c, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus

Teal/Blue: iPhone 4 & 4s, iPhone 5, 5s, & 5c, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus

What type of backgrounds do you like having on your phone?

blog-signature

P.S. College student? Check out these 10+ must have apps!

10+ Must Have Apps for College Students

 

UPDATED FEBRUARY 7, 2017

If I was to list a single skill I wish I already had mastered, it'd be productivity. Being a full-time student has taught me so much about prioritizing and not procrastinating. But of course, it's not always easy. I'm always looking for more ways to productive. And living in the smartphone generation, apps are one of those ways. Social media apps such as Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest definitely get the most use on my phone, but those don't allow me to be very productive. That got me thinking about the apps that come in handy the most when I am in school. Which ones help me stay on top of everything? So the following apps and resources are ones that I personally use and recommend to any busy person looking to maximize the time they have and stay organized.

Update: Don't miss 10+ MORE must have apps for college students!

RefME (Free / Website)

I've been using RefME for all my papers this semester, and I don't know why I didn't use it before! It's such an amazing resource! Nobody likes figuring out how to cite a source. RefME does all the hard stuff and lets you collect sources fast and keep them organized in groups. You can either search for the reference title, author, url, etc., or simply fill in the boxes with the appropriate information, select what citation style you need, and voilá! A perfect bibliography/works cited is born! Some other great features are that it allows you to export your bibliography directly into a Word document and shows you the correct inline citation to use. With their app, you can even scan book/journal barcodes to get citations. How easy it that?

Sunrise (Free / iPhone, AndroidMac)

While the default calendar app is fine for appointments and schedules, I find the Sunrise app even better. Upon opening the app, you can see your schedule for the next few days with little icons beside each event letting you know if it's a class, meeting, work, etc. I love how simple and straightforward it is!

 

MyWater (Free / iPhone, Android)

8 glasses of water a day is the basis of good nutrition. I use this app to keep track of how many water bottles I drink in a day. You can set your daily goal, what type of drink you're having (water, tea, coffee, etc.), and have reminders go off at different times during the day. It's easy to use too, just click "Add a drink" when you drink a glass of water!

 

Sleep Cycle (Free (pay for Premium) iPhone / $0.99 Android)

Hate that feeling of waking up all groggy and tired for an early morning class? Sleep Cycle analyzes your sleep and wakes you up when you're in the lightest sleep phase. Graphs provide you with information about your sleep quality, what times you went to sleep in the past 3 months, the average time you spend in bed, and your sleep quality on certain days of the week. Definitely worth the $0.99 if you have an Android!

 

Shopkick (Free / iPhone, Android)

Free gift cards? Yes, please! Use shopkick to get points for walking into stores like Target, American Eagle, and Best Buy. Then, redeem your points for gift cards. Shopkick also has coupons and deals for tons of stores that you already go to on a regular basis.

 

 

Pocket (Free / iPhone, Android, Mac)

Don’t lose track of the all the interesting things you find by letting tabs pile up in your browser. Pocket allows you to easily save articles, videos, and more for later. Everything goes to one place, so you can view it anytime, on any device, even without internet. Perfect for when you want to read an article or watch a video but don't have time at the moment.

 

Mint (Free / iPhone, Android)

This is the perfect app for creating a budget and keeping track of where you spend your money. Set up financial goals such as saving up for spring break, paying off your school loans, or buying a car and get advice on how you should budget and distribute your paychecks in your checking and savings accounts.

 

She Reads Truth (Free / iPhone, AndroidWebsite)

She Reads Truth is an online community of women who read the Bible and encourage one another. Devotional reading plans can be read on their website for free, emailed to you, or read through the iPhone app (for a small fee depending on how recent the plan is). The app also includes beautiful lock screens with scripture on them!

 

Duolingo (Free / iPhone, Android, Website)

I have to take a language class for my Bachelor of Arts degree, so I'm getting ahead of the game by learning Spanish for free on Duolingo. This app can help you learn Spanish, French, German, Portuguese, or Italian using easy exercises to help you spell and pronounce the new words! You can set how long you want to learn each day (5 minutes, 10 minutes, etc.) making it easy to do in between other tasks.

 

Dropbox (Free / iPhone, Android, Website)

I have this fear of my laptop crashing and losing all my photos and documents. That's why I save important things in Dropbox. Another plus is that I can access it on my phone! It makes accessing photos from anywhere super easy.

 

Any.Do (Free / iPhone, Android, Website)

I've tried SO many to-do list apps, and this one is by far my favorite! Simple and straightforward, the app allows you to set tasks for today, tomorrow, upcoming, and someday. Once a task is complete, just click it to make it disappear. I like using the website version since I usually have it open in my web browser.

 

Caffeine (Free / Mac)

Don't let your Mac fall asleep while you're working on paper ever again! Install Caffeine on your computer and a little coffee cup will appear in the toolbar at the top. Just click on the cup to keep your Mac awake for a set amount of time (I have mine set for 30 minutes). Once the time is up, your computer will go into normal power saving mode.

 

theSkimm (Free / iPhoneWebsite)

This last resource isn't an app, but rather an easy way to stay current with the news. I don't have time to read or watch the news every day, and sometimes I feel like I'm disconnected with what is going on in the world. theSkimm breaks down headlines and delivers the news to you in a simple, easy-to-read email that is sent to you every morning. Read it while brushing your teeth or eating your breakfast, it only takes a few minutes.


I hope these apps are as helpful to you as they are to me! Enjoy! :)


What are your must have apps?

 

P.S. Make sure you have these 8 College Girl Must Haves!!

 

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features | The Kardia Blog
I have a confession to make. While I do consider myself a girly girl, I am also a tech nerd. I love getting to know all the details to new devices and software and learn how they work. So yesterday, when iOS 8 came out, I had to download it! While it wasn't as big of a change as iOS 7 was, it does have some handy new features. Consider this your guide to the ins and outs of the new Apple iPhone software.

Messages

1. A Smart Keyboard

iOS 8 can predict what you'll likely say next and suggests words and phrases (finally!) based on your previous conversations and writing style. It even knows what the conversation is about so, for example, if you ask if someone "Are you ready?", it might suggest yes, no, or soon.

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features | The Kardia

2. Swipe to reply

This screenshot is from the app Tips that comes downloaded with your new iOS 8 update. Every week Apple will update new tips for you to get the most out of your iphone! Here's one tip explaining how to use this feature:

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features | The Kardia

3. Tap to See Every Attachment in a Conversation

Sometimes you just want to see a picture someone sent to you a while back, but having to scroll back to find it can be annoying and time consuming. Now you can tap 'Details' in the top right corner of a conversation to view every attachment sent between you two!

4. Share Your Location in a Message

Ever text someone "Where are you?" and have trouble pinpointing where they are? Tapping 'Details' while in a conversation will also give you the option to share where you are and give the other person a map. You can share that information for an hour, until the end of the day, or indefinitely.

5. Send Multiple Photos and Videos at Once

Now you can attach multiple photos and videos all at once. It even displays the most recents pictures you've taken to help you out.

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features | The Kardia

6. Record Any Sound and Send It

Sharing your voice, a song, or a laugh has never been easier! Simply touch and hold the microphone button to record your message and then swipe up to send it.

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features | The Kardia

7. Lift to Listen

When you receive a sound message, you can just simply lift your phone to your ear and listen to it like you would a phone call. Or you could just tap the play button...

8. Name Group Messages

Start a group conversation and name it whatever you'd like! You can add new people and leave the conversation too.

9. Do Not Disturb for Group Messages

Sometimes group messages can continue longer than necessary, causing you to get a notification every 10 seconds. Now you can finally turn on Do Not Disturb in the message, and read the complete conversation whenever you want to.

 Photos

10. No more Camera Roll

If you update to iOS 8 and check Albums in the photos app, you might freak out at first because the top album you'll see will say Recently Added and will only include a fraction of the photos you have. Don't worry though! All your photos are in still there by collections.

11. Adjust Light, Color, Exposure and more!

Now you can finally add filters, crop, and edit right from the Photos app. Tap 'Edit' and then crop, add filters, or edit using the three options at the bottom.

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features | The Kardia

12. View Recently Deleted Photos

iOS 8 comes with a new folder in your photos called Recently Deleted. When a photo gets deleted, it stays in this folder for 30 days until it gets permanently deleted.

13. Favorite Photos

At the bottom of every photo is a little heart that you can tap to save it to a Favorites folder.

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features | The Kardia

14. Time Lapse Photography

A great new feature! Swipe to select time lapse mode, set up your tripod, and let your iPhone snap away.

15. Search Your Photos

 Easily search your photos by date, time, location, or favorites.

Mail

16. Swipe to Mark

The Mail app got a few updates as well. Swipe to the right to mark an email as unread. Swipe to the left to move, flag, archive, or trash it.

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features | The Kardia

17. Easily Add Commitments to Calendar

Your iPhone will recognize reservation information, flight confirmations, and phone numbers, and a suggestion appears to quickly add them to your calendar. Just tap to add an event to your calendar or a phone number to your contacts.

Other Features

18. Double Click for Recent Contacts

Double clicking the home button will not only let you switch between open apps, but it will also give you access to your recent contacts. You can tap a contact and message or call them straight from there.

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features | The Kardia

19. Siri Can Tell You What Song is Playing

If you want to know what song is playing, you usually have to go into an app like Shazam. Now, without ever unlocking your phone, you can just ask Siri what the song is and Siri will Shazam it for you.

21 Brilliant iOS 8 Tips, Tricks, and Features | The Kardia

 20. New Health App

The new Health app that comes downloaded with the new software allows you to keep track of steps, calories burned, sleep, fiber and protein intake, vitals, body measurements, and so much more. Third-party apps will soon be able to share data with the Health app too.

ios04

21. Third-Party Keyboards Available

Download another keyboard and you can swipe rather than type or use the classic keyboard layout. For the first time, iOS 8 opens up the keyboard to developers.

I hope this list was helpful for you! I know many people don't like to update their phone right when a new software version comes out, but I think that it's worth it (and fun!)

Do you like iOS 8? 

blog-signature