By: Joyce Wycoff
Do you need a way to help you organize your ideas and boost your creativity at the same time? Most of us do. Tony Buzan, editor of the International Mensa Jurnal, developed an easy thinking technique called mindmapping.
It’s a kind of nonlinear note taking that lets you capture ideas on paper, organize your ideas and make connection between them, and so encourages creativity.
How does mindmapping work? In her book Mindmapping: Your Personal Guide to Exploring Creativity and Problem-solving, Joyce Wycoff suggest following these three steps:
1. Focus. Using just one or two words, write the focus of your problem in the center of a piece of paper. Take your time to find the words that really get to the heart of your problem.
2. Let your thoughts grow out from the central focus. As your ideas arise, print them as key words and use lines, as in a tree diagram, to connect them to the focus.
3. Put down all of your ideas. Just the act of writing down ideas gets your mind “unstuck,” Wycoff advises. It helps you to clarify issues and from there, to think up more imaginative solutions. But don’t try to edit your ideas or criticize at this stage, she cautions. The key to this stage is to be flexible and have fun with your mind map.
What can we use mindmapping for? Try it on project organizations, meeting agendas, “to do” lists, presentations, even personal growth.
So, if it’s a jungle out there, try mindmapping your way with tree diagrams. You’ll discover more effective and elegant solution to everyday problems.