Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Restoring a Keyboard Shortcut.

Restoring a Keyboard Shortcut

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 24, 2020)

3

Word makes it easy to assign keyboard shortcuts to a variety of purposes. The two most common things assigned to shortcut keys are macros and built-in Word commands. It is possible, however, to assign a keyboard shortcut to an item and then later regret the assignment. For instance, you might assign a macro to the shortcut Ctrl+~ (the tilde symbol). However, this is a built-in shortcut for typing a letter with a tilde on top, most often used in foreign languages. Of course, if you later discover you need the built-in shortcut, you may wonder how to restore the keyboard shortcut to its intended purpose, rather than running the macro.

This is a relatively easy task. Basically, you need to follow the same steps you followed in order to assign the macro to the shortcut, with one important change. Here's what to do:

  1. Display the Word Options dialog box. (In Word 2007 click the Office button and then click Word Options. In Word 2010 or a later version, display the File tab of the ribbon and click Options.)
  2. At the left side of the dialog box click Customize (Word 2007) or Customize Ribbon (Word 2010 and later versions). (See Figure 1.)
  3. Figure 1. The Customize Ribbon options of the Word Options dialog box.

  4. At the bottom of the dialog box click Customize, next to the Keyboard Shortcuts label. Word displays the Customize Keyboard dialog box. (See Figure 2.)
  5. Figure 2. The Customize Keyboard dialog box.

  6. In the Categories list, choose Macros.
  7. In the Macros list, choose the macro you previously assigned to the Ctrl+~ shortcut. The shortcut should now show up in the Current Keys list.
  8. In the Current Keys list, click the Ctrl+~ shortcut.
  9. Click the Remove button.
  10. Click Close, then close the Word Options dialog box as well.

The shortcut should now be removed from the macro and it (the shortcut) again resumes doing its previous duty.

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the WordTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10476) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Restoring a Keyboard Shortcut.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Printing Multiple Worksheet Ranges

Need to print more than one portion of your worksheet? If you use named ranges for the different ranges you want to ...

Discover More

Word and Character Count Information

Using fields you can easily insert both the word and character counts for a document into the document itself. As those ...

Discover More

Permanently Deleting Items

Want to permanently get rid of an object rather than simply moving it to the Recycle Bin? Here are a couple of tricks you ...

Discover More

Do More in Less Time! Are you ready to harness the full power of Word 2013 to create professional documents? In this comprehensive guide you'll learn the skills and techniques for efficiently building the documents you need for your professional and your personal life. Check out Word 2013 In Depth today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Changing Characters on Keyboard Keys

Want to assign some fancy characters to keyboard keys for characters you seldom use? There are a couple of ways you can ...

Discover More

Using Function Keys

Want a great list that shows the purpose of each function key in Word? Here's the detail you need!

Discover More

Shortcut Key for Non-Breaking Space

Most of the time you'll use regular spaces between words in a document, but there may be times you want to use a special ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is one more than 1?

2016-12-29 14:46:39

Paul

I see no option for restoring ctrl+shift+right arrow for selecting word right. Using WORD 2016


2015-08-26 23:34:42

Phil Reinemann

If instead of removing the shortcut for the macro, you assigned it to another shortcut, would the original shortcut change back to what it was, or would you have two shortcuts that executed the macro?


2015-08-24 03:50:27

Gerald Thorburn

Is it being pedantic Alan to say that applying the tilde as you describe (para #1) is actually Ctrl + Shift + Tilde (and THEN, say, 'n' as in Spanish), to achieve the desired effect.

Many, many thanks for all your efforts. I use Access in 90% of my work and just wish I used Word more to buy stuff from you and apply all the tricks!


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.