Monday, 26 September 2016

Mind mapping talk and tips by intuitive life coach, Derek McGillivray

 Use this effective tool to overcome your challenges in your life, work and play.

Mind Maps were popularised by author and consultant, Tony Buzan. They use a two-dimensional structure, instead of the list format conventionally used to take notes.

Mind Maps are more compact than conventional notes, often taking up one side of paper. This helps you to make associations easily, and generate new ideas If you find out more information after you have drawn a Mind Map, then you can easily integrate it with little disruption.

More than this, Mind Mapping helps you break large projects or topics down into manageable chunks, so that you can plan effectively without getting overwhelmed and without forgetting something important.

A good Mind Map shows the "shape" of the subject, the relative importance of individual points, and the way in which facts relate to one another. This means that they're very quick to review, as you can often refresh information in your mind just by glancing at one. In this way, they can be effective mnemonics - remembering the shape and structure of a Mind Map can give you the cues you need to remember the information within it. As such, they engage much more of your brain in the process of assimilating and connecting information than conventional notes do.

When created using colours and images or drawings, a Mind Map can even resemble a work of art!

If you need help, book a life coaching session with Derek! Click here to set it up!


Mind Maps are useful for:

· Brainstorming - individually, and as a group.

· Summarising information, and note taking.

· Consolidating information from different research sources.

· Thinking through complex problems.

· Presenting information in a format that shows the overall structure of your subject.

· Studying and memorising information.

Drawing Basic Mind Maps

To draw a Mind Map, follow these steps:

1. Write the title of the subject you're exploring in the centre of the page, and draw a circle around it. This is shown by the circle marked in figure 1, below.

(Our simple example shows someone brainstorming actions needed to deliver a successful presentation.)

Figure 1

2. As you come across major subdivisions or subheadings of the topic (or important facts that relate to the subject) draw lines out from this circle. Label these lines with these subdivisions or subheadings. (See figure 2, below.)

Figure 2

3. As you "burrow" 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. These are shown in figure 3.

Figure 3

4. Then, for individual facts or ideas, draw lines out from the appropriate heading line and label them. These are shown in Figure 4.

Figure 4

5. As you come across new information, link it in to the Mind Map appropriately.

A complete Mind Map may have main topic lines radiating in all directions from the canter. Sub-topics and facts will branch off these, like branches and twigs from the trunk of a tree. You don't need to worry about the structure you produce, as this will evolve of its own accord.

If you need help, book a life coaching session with Derek! Click here to set it up!

Using Mind Maps Effectively

Once you understand how to take notes in Mind Map format, you can develop your own conventions for taking them further. The following suggestions can help you draw impactful Mind Maps:

Use Single Words or Simple Phrases

Many words in normal writing are padding, as they ensure that facts are conveyed in the correct context, and in a format that is pleasant to read.

In Mind Maps, single strong words and short, meaningful phrases can convey the same meaning more potently. Excess words just clutter the Mind Map.

Print Words

Joined up or indistinct writing is more difficult to read.

Use Colour to Separate Different Ideas

This will help you to separate ideas where necessary. It also helps you to visualise the Mind Map for recall. Colour can help to show the organisation of the subject.

Use Symbols and Images

Pictures can help you to remember information more effectively than words, so, where a symbol or picture means something to you, use it. (You can use photo libraries like iStockPhoto to source images inexpensively.)

Using Cross-Linkages

Information in one part of a Mind Map may relate to another part. Here you can draw lines to show the cross-linkages. This helps you to see how one part of the subject affects another.

Visual Example

If you need help, book a life coaching session with Derek! Click here to set it up!

Key Points

Mind Mapping is an extremely effective method of taking notes. Not only do Mind Maps show facts, they also show the overall structure of a subject and the relative importance of individual parts of it. They help you to associate ideas, think creatively, and make connections that you might not otherwise make.

Mind Maps are useful for summarising information, for consolidating large chunks of information, for making connections, and for creative problem solving. To use Mind Maps effectively, make sure you print your words, use different colours to add visual impact, and incorporate symbols and images to further spur creative thinking. If you do any form of research or note taking, try experimenting with Mind Maps. You'll love using them!

Mind map to summarise mind maps

Give it a go I personally used mind mapping to design a Business continuity plan for a mayor oil service company in Aberdeen and found it a great tool for such a big project.