One of the secrets to a happy marriage is to have separate computers. In our computer-intensive household, this approach has worked well for many years. However, occasionally I do have to venture over into the other office to use my husband's computer because it's the only one that has QuickBooks loaded on it. Recently, I got to experience James' workspace for a bit, and I noticed his desktop had some extra shortcuts.
I suppose that sometimes it's good to get out of your own little world and see how other people use their computers. On my computer, most of my shortcuts go to software programs. But as I've written before, a shortcut can point to pretty much anything on your computer, including files or folders. James has shortcuts that point to Microsoft Word templates that he uses frequently.
Pointing a shortcut to a template is easy and can save you a lot of time. For example, many companies have specific Word templates set up for reports and other frequently used documents. Instead of opening a blank document in Word using that template, you can just create a shortcut on your desktop. Then when you double-click the shortcut, Word dutifully opens a new document based on the template, so you can avoid wandering around the New dialog box or Task Pane.
To create a shortcut to a Word template, you need to find out where Word has stored them. This location may depend on your version of Word and whether or not you are using a network. To find out, from within Word choose Tools|Options. Click the File Locations tab and note the folder that's next to User Templates.
Now to create your shortcut:
1. Right-click in an empty spot on your desktop.
2. Choose New|Shortcut from the pop-up menu.
3. Click the Browse button and navigate to the folder where you discovered Word is storing your templates.
4. In that folder, click the filename for the template you want and click Next.
5. Enter a descriptive name for your shortcut, so you'll remember what it's for, and then click Finish.
Now with your spanky new shortcut, you are just one double-click away from a new document!