Creating and removing numbered lists in Word is easy using the “Numbering” command on the ribbon. However, if you prefer using the keyboard, there is a way to quickly create a numbered list using a keyboard shortcut.

We will add a keyboard shortcut to the command for creating numbered lists. To do so, right click anywhere on the ribbon and select “Customize the Ribbon” from the popup menu.

The “Customize the Ribbon and keyboard shortcuts” screen displays on the “Word Options” dialog box.

On the “Customize Keyboard” dialog box, select “All Commands” in the “Categories” list.

Scroll down in the “Commands” list and select “FormatNumberDefault”.

Put the cursor in the “Press new shortcut key” edit box and press the shortcut key combination you want to use to create a numbered list. We used “Alt + N” because it’s not assigned to anything else in Word. Click “Assign”.

The new keyboard shortcut is added to the “Current keys” list.

If you made other changes on the “Word Options” dialog box (not a sub-dialog), click “OK” to accept your changes and close the dialog box. Otherwise, click “Cancel”.

To remove the number from a numbered list item, simply press the keyboard shortcut again. The number and the paragraph indent are removed. You can also press “Ctrl + Q” to remove paragraph numbering, but this leaves the paragraph indented.

Word can also automatically create a numbered list, however you can turn off this feature.

Profile Photo for Lori Kaufman Lori Kaufman
Lori Kaufman is a technology expert with 25 years of experience. She's been a senior technical writer, worked as a programmer, and has even run her own multi-location business.
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