When starting with vim, or any text editor, learning the keyboard shortcuts is essential to mastery. Many articles suggest using a physical notepad to record the shortcuts you’re actively working to memorize.
And this is when I suggest the Cheat40 plugin for vim. It provides a quick command reference and is simple to customize as you progress. It opens a split (40 chars wide) with your cheat sheet, and it comes with a great example to get you started.
I add all my new plugins and custom leader commands for quick reference, otherwise I am constantly opening my
.vimrc or reading the manuals. Those pauses are what I try to avoid.