Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. If you are using an earlier version (Excel 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Excel, click here: Unselecting a Chart Item.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 11, 2015)
Excel includes a very powerful charting feature. As you work with charting your data, it is not unusual to select different objects and then use the various formatting features of Excel to make that object look exactly as you want it to. You select chart objects by simply clicking on the object with the mouse.
If you select an object by mistake, you can easily undo that selection by simply selecting a different object. If you don't want to select a different object, but instead want to "deselect" the item you selected, all you need to do is press the Esc key. Excel obediently cancels whatever selection you made.
ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (9816) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Excel here: Unselecting a Chart Item.
Create Custom Apps with VBA! Discover how to extend the capabilities of Office 2013 (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Access) with VBA programming, using it for writing macros, automating Office applications, and creating custom applications. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2013 today!
Charts serve a purpose, and sometimes that purpose is temporary. If you want to get rid of a chart, here's how to do it.Discover More
Change the data on which a chart is based and Excel obligingly updates the chart to reflect the change. What if you want ...Discover More
Adding labels to a chart can make the information presented in the chart more understandable. Excel allows you to add ...Discover More
FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in ExcelTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."
Got a version of Excel that uses the ribbon interface (Excel 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Excel, visit our ExcelTips site focusing on the menu interface.