Excel has a number of built in custom lists that can be used to quickly enter information that follows a pattern such as months of the year or days of the week. Excel knows that there are always 12 months in a year and 7 days in a week and that these values never change. When you type one of the values from these lists such as a month you can use the fill handle to copy the series to other adjacent cells, it doesn’t matter which way you drag the fill handle either because Excel will work out which value to enter depending on the direction you drag the fill handle. For example, if you enter Sunday in a cell and drag the fill handle up or to the left Excel will enter Saturday and if you drag the fill handle down or to the right Excel will enter Monday.
Try typing Wednesday in a cell and then click and drag on the fill handle in the bottom right corner of the cell (the mouse shape should be a small black cross).
As you drag the mouse you’ll see values appearing on the fill handle, when you get to the value you want release the mouse.
Excel is even clever enough to recognise that if you start entering the days of the week or months in an abbreviated format e.g. Mon, Tues the rest of the list should also follow in the same format.
You can also create your own Custom Lists – please refer to the guide ‘Creating Custom Lists’ for full details.