Do you need a way to organize your thoughts and ideas? There are lots of tools out there to help, but one technique that’s easy and possibly even fun to do is mind mapping.
What is a mind map?
A mind map is a brainstorming tool that helps you to take notes and explore and visualize ideas. It starts with a central idea, topic, theme, or event, with lots of other ideas and topics branching off it. This can be drawn out by hand or created using a digital program. The result is a map of your ideas, allowing you to get everything out of your head and onto paper.
Mind maps are a good combination of creative and logical thinking, and you can make them as creative as you’d like. Draw pictures or icons instead of, or as well as, writing keywords. You can use different colors to represent different ideas, making your mind map more visually appealing. People often draw thicker branches connecting the main topics and then thinner ones closer to the edge of the map.
What are mind maps used for?
There are so many great uses for mind maps. You can use them for things like planning your day, studying for a test, presenting an idea to others, planning your wedding, or managing a project.
For one of your projects, for example, you could put the name of the project, client, product, or goal in the center of the mind map. Branching off this could be the different aspects of the project, such as budget, venue, suppliers, marketing, etc. You can then explore your ideas or plans for each of these aspects. From marketing, for example, you could write emails, flyers, and social media. Then you would do the same for the other ideas.
Imagine you’re working on a project and you’re short on budget. Getting all the details of the project onto paper and viewing it in this visual form could help you to identify the solution you’re looking for. Sometimes looking at something in a different way can help to refocus your mind and open it up to new options and ideas.
How to create a mind map
You can create a mind map by either drawing it out on paper or by using an online mind map software. Let’s look at both of these options.
Hand-drawn mind maps
Some people prefer pen and paper for mind mapping because it is a more creative process and you can connect with the subject matter more closely. It’s a more personal experience and is perfect for doodlers. It can also be more convenient as you don’t need a device or internet connection for it. You could jot down a mind map in the office, sat on a train, or while taking a walk in a park, as long as you have a pen and paper on you.
Digital mind maps
While online or digital mind maps might not be as personal or tactile as paper ones, they have lots of other advantages over hand-drawn mind maps. Firstly, they are easy to edit if you make a mistake or think of something later. You can also expand them as much as you want, rather than remaining in the confines of a piece of paper. You can also save online mind maps so that you know you won’t lose them.
Here are a few different tools you could try:
Whichever method you choose, the process is pretty similar. You think of the central theme and write, or draw, it down in the middle. Then just start thinking and branching off ideas from the central theme and then again from the branches.
Write a word or short phrase for each idea rather than full sentences. These should just be prompts that get your thinking about a topic rather than fully developed ideas. You can use different colors as you choose and add drawings. Get as creative as you’d like with your mind map.
Using a mind mapping tool alongside a project management tool such as LogicalPlan is the perfect way to get organized and make the right decisions for your project. Plus, on July 1st, we’ll be launching the second version of LogicalPlan – our Pro version. This will include mind mapping along with lots of other new and exciting features that will help you get your projects under control. We’re always looking for new ways to develop LogicalPlan for the benefit of our users, so get in touch if you have any suggestions for us.