There is nothing more important in my mind than getting in the driver’s seat of your own life and doing the things you are most passionate about. But sometimes you to to take a step back and find the time to brainstorm exactly what you want.
Yesterday I wrote about finding the time to do “big picture” thinking by starting with the End in Mind.This is going to require you to brainstorm.
So today, I’d like to introduce you to Mind Mapping. A tool that is perfect to help you to clarify your mission and vision.
Whenever i want to expand my thought processing on a particular idea i know i need to get things down on what i call my brainstorming map and mind mapping is the process I use.
Mind Mapping is an incredible technique for brainstorming, and improves the way that you record information, and supports and enhances creative thinking.
Mind mapping is a method of storing, organizing, prioritizing, structuring and clarifying information. It presents an outline and summary of a body of knowledge that connects words together helping stimulate logical and creative thought patterns
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia: ‘A mind map is a diagram used to represent words, ideas, tasks, or other items linked to and arranged around a central key word or idea. Mind maps are used to generate, visualize, structure, and classify ideas, and as an aid to studying and organizing information, solving problems, making decisions, and writing.’
When we brainstorm we have lots of related ideas floating around in our heads, and trying to evaluate and sort-out all of them can be very difficult and confusing at first. So it helps if you can actually write all of these ideas down and organize them in a non linear way. This is exactly what a mind map allows you to do. Through mind mapping you are be able to organize and manage a surplus of information that you produce during your brainstorming session.
What can be achieved, and the amount of information we can manage at one time using visual mind maps is absolutely extraordinary.
Ok, so how do you do it? Here’s a really simplified example. Let’s assume that you are brainstorming building your online business by creating a mind map.
Maybe it’s an age thing, but I will always create my mind maps with paper and pencil.
Write the title of the subject/the main idea you’re brainstorming in the centre of the page. This is your main subject the one at the center of all of your other ideas. In this example, the subject we are brainstorming is “My Online Business”. Now draw a circle around it.
As you come up with the subtopics or subheadings of your topic, or even important facts that relate to the subject draw lines out from this circle. Label these lines with these subtopics or subheadings.
As you explore into the subject and uncover another level of information (further subheadings, or individual facts belonging to the subheadings above, draw these as lines linked to the subheading lines.
This is the “model” that you can now use to organize your thoughts. As you can see, it’s basically a stream of ideas, that knows no boundaries.
I personally use a mind map to plan my blog posts, set goals, organize my time and to design my training courses. It’s probably my secret weapon. Now use it yourself!