How to Edit, Restart, or Continue a Numbered List in Google Docs

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Numbered lists are perfect for items, instructions, or tasks. When you start a new numbered list in Google Docs, it often continues from the previous one. Other times, it’s the opposite. Here’s how to edit numbered lists in Google Docs.

Restart a Numbered List in Google Docs

While Google Docs is helpful by recognizing our lists and continuing the numbering, this isn’t always what we want. If you want separate lists instead of a continuous one, you can simply restart the numbering.

Select the list item where you want to restart the numbering. You can select the list item or the number.

Example of a continued list

Click Format in the menu. Move your cursor to Bullets & Numbering> List Options and click “Restart Numbering” in the pop-out menu.

Click Format, Bullets and Number, List Options, Restart Numbering

Enter the starting number and click “OK.”

Enter a restart number for a list

And there you go! You started a new numbered list.

Select a list number

Continue a Numbered List in Google Docs

Maybe you have the opposite situation in your document. You have two separate numbered lists that you want to become one. In this case, you’ll simply continue the numbering.

Select the list item where you want to continue the numbering. Again, you can select the list item or the number.

Select a list number

Click Format in the menu. Move your cursor to Bullets & Numbering> List Options and click “Continue Previous Numbering” in the pop-out menu.

Click Format, Bullets and Number, List Options, Continue Previous Numbering

Boom! You now have a single numbered list instead of two.

Example of a continued list

Edit a Numbered List in Google Docs

Aside from restarting or continuing the numbering for your list, you may want to make other changes. You can edit the style of the numbered list, switch to a bulleted list or checklist, or use a color.

Edit the List Style

You might want to keep your list a numbered one but use a different style, especially if you have a multilevel list. Select your list and do one of the following.

  • Click the Numbered List drop-down arrow in the toolbar and choose a style.

Click Numbered List in the toolbar and pick a style

  • Click Format> Bullets & Numbering> Numbered List from the menu and pick a style.

Click Format, Bullets and Number, Numbered list and pick a style

Change the List Type

Perhaps you want to switch from a numbered list to a bulleted list or checklist. Select your list and do one of the following.

  • Click the Bulleted List drop-down arrow in the toolbar and choose a style. Alternatively, you can click Checklist to use that list type.

Click Bulleted List in the toolbar and pick a style

  • Click Format> Bullets & Numbering> Bulleted List from the menu and pick a style.

Click Format, Bullets and Number, Bulleted list and pick a style

Apply a List Color

Rather than changing the list style or type, you may want to simply apply a color. You can use a color for all numbers in the list or only certain ones.

To apply color to all numbers, select the numbering. This highlights all numbers in the list. Then, click the Text Color icon in the toolbar and pick a color.

Select the numbers and click Text Color in the toolbar

To apply color to a particular number, first select the numbering. Then, click the number you want to change. This highlights only that number. Click the Text Color icon in the toolbar and choose a color.

Select a number and click Text Color in the toolbar

If you use Microsoft Word in addition to Google Docs, take a peek at our how-to for working with lists in Word too.

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