Mind Mapping Essentials
When you are given a project in school or at work, do you immediately make a step-by-step list of the tasks that you should perform in order to complete the project? Or, do you do everything that you can randomly and just try to organize and put together the project in the end, when you gathered have enough material?
If you have chosen the first option, then you may not be making the most of your mind's potential. Making a linear, step-by-step list of the things that you need to do in order to accomplish a goal is much like how a computer's 'brain' works.
On the other hand, if you have chosen the second option, then you have a wider array of choices when it comes to the paths that you can take to achieve your goal, since this is basically how mind mapping works.
Mind mapping is a concept or technique wherein your thinking process will be externally reflected in the form of an illustration or diagram. This was developed by Tony Buzan, who, in his web site www.imindmap.com, encourages people to "unleash the remaining 99% of their brain" through mind mapping.
This concept essentially follows the natural way that the human brain works. For example, when you think of or visualize the color red, your brain instinctively associates the word 'red' with apple, blood, cherries, a scarlet shirt that you may have worn at one time – anything that is associated with the color is what comes to your mind instead of just the word itself. So, from just one root word, your brain will immediately associate it with other words to broaden the scope of the topic.
This natural working of the brain, when illustrated on paper, is mind mapping. You can start by writing in the center of a piece of paper one word, representing one idea. From there - through the process of association – you can come up with several branches which all connect to your central idea.
The relationship between the main idea and all the branches that will stem out from the central theme is how the end process will look like. With mind mapping, you can organize your thoughts more coherently, new ideas will be better expressed and developed, you can retain information faster because of the fact that visual illustrations that you mapped out yourself is easier to remember than any list – all these and more are the benefits of mind mapping.
Aside from these benefits, there are hundreds of instances at work and in your home life where you can make use of the process of mind mapping to maximize your brain's potential and save you a lot of time and effort when planning.