Ever lose track of where you are in a worksheet?
It's a common problem when navigating large datasets. You're flicking between cells, switching applications, and your eyes are darting between places.
You're handling sensitive data and want to be sure you're focusing on the correct record, but the further away you get from the row and column headers — the worse it gets.
You wish there were a better solution than meticulously sliding your index finger across the screen.
Unfortunately, Excel doesn't have a built-in feature for this, but there is a workaround.
Do the following:
1. Select a range.
2. Go to Home > Conditional Formatting > New Rule.
3. Select 'Use a formula to determine which cells to format'.
4. Input =𝙾𝚁(𝙲𝙴𝙻𝙻("𝚌𝚘𝚕")=𝙲𝙾𝙻𝚄𝙼𝙽(),𝙲𝙴𝙻𝙻("𝚛𝚘𝚠")=𝚁𝙾𝚆()).
5. Select Format and choose a fill colour.
6. Select OK twice.
You can now highlight the active row and column of the cell you're in by pressing F9 to recalculate the workbook. The upside of this method is there's no VBA. The downside is it isn't automatic.
However, adding some VBA code allows you to create an event that automatically performs this recalculation:
1. Press Alt + F11 to open the VBA Editor.
2. Open the relevant sheet object.
3. Input the code:
𝙿𝚛𝚒𝚟𝚊𝚝𝚎 𝚂𝚞𝚋 𝚆𝚘𝚛𝚔𝚜𝚑𝚎𝚎𝚝_𝚂𝚎𝚕𝚎𝚌𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗𝙲𝚑𝚊𝚗𝚐𝚎(𝙱𝚢𝚅𝚊𝚕 𝚃𝚊𝚛𝚐𝚎𝚝 𝙰𝚜 𝚁𝚊𝚗𝚐𝚎)
𝙸𝚏 𝙰𝚙𝚙𝚕𝚒𝚌𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗.𝙲𝚞𝚝𝙲𝚘𝚙𝚢𝙼𝚘𝚍𝚎 = 𝙵𝚊𝚕𝚜𝚎 𝚃𝚑𝚎𝚗
The active row and column now highlight automatically as you navigate the worksheet range.