There are two methods for using a steel. Try both of them to see which is most successful for you.
The first method is arguably the easiest as you have more control of the steel and the angle of the knife. Hold the steel verticaly with the tip on a nonslip surface. Put the knife edge where it joins the handle at the top of the steel, with the blade pointing downwards, at an angle of 45 degrees. Bring the knife down the steel, keeping the angle constant and drawing the blade across the steel so that when you reach the bottom of the steel you are shrpening the tip of the blade.
Repeat the procedure, dragging the other side of the blade down underneath the steel, keeping the angle at 45 degrees. Repeat both sequences until the blade is sharp.
Alternatively, hold the steel in one hand, the knife in the other and place the handle ends of each together at an angle of 45 degrees. Keeping your elbows against your sides, raise the steel and the knife, parting your hands so that the blade travels up the steel. Finish with the knife tip near the tip of the steel. Repeat, holding the other side of the knife blade against the other side of the steel. Continue this sequence until the knife is sharp.