Part Two – Creating Your First Mind Map
Every mind map has some things in common, first is the use of color, everything radiates from the center, they all use curved lines, symbols, words and images in accordance with a set of very simple brain friendly rules.
Ok to start your mind map you need a topic (idea), so let’s do one for your health.
Take a piece of paper and your colored pens; turn the paper sideways so the paper is wider then longer. In the center of the paper draw an image that sums up you being at optimum healthy. Now label the image. It could be as simple as the word Health.
Now draw some thick branches radiating out from the center health image. Make sure to use different colors for each. These branches are going to represent your main thoughts on what this is going to be (your health).
You can have as many of these branches as you like, but for this mind map we are going to have five. Now on each one of these branches in large capital letters print the first five single keywords that come to mind when you think of your health.
If you need to, ask yourself some questions. So for example you could ask yourself. “What do I need to change most?” the keyword could be DIET, “What has been missing most?” the keyword could be EXERCISE.
“I can’t be afraid to ask for advice?” the keyword could be HELP, “I need to make sure I get my rest?” the keyword could be SLEEP, “I need to relax?” the keyword could be STRESS.
So at this point you mind map is made up of colors, lines and words, so now what. Let’s make it better.
Add pictures and use your imagination.
Remember a picture is worth a thousand words. This is the main ingredient in a mind map and it’s what your brain loves the most: Images are easier to remember! Just make sure you place your imagines on the proper branches of your mind map.
As you keep building your mind map these pictures are going to reinforce your ideas. And remember you are not trying to be Leonardo da Vinci, artistic ability is not important.
Now let’s expand your mind map even further. Take a look at the keywords you wrote on each one of the main branches, do any of these words trigger and further ideas?
For example one of your main ideas is “EXERCISE”; when you say that, think about the different types of exercise you could do. You could use a bike, a treadmill, aerobic, stretching, toning and strength training.
So now draw further branches radiating from each of your keywords in order to accommodate the associations you make to EXERCISE.
And again the number of these sub branches you have is only limited to the number of ideas you come up with. And just like the main thought branches, print a single key word on these sub branches and make sure to use colors and pictures to reinforce your ideas.
That’s it, that’s a mind map.
And congratulations here is what your first mind map looks like:
You’ll notice your mind map is full of colors, symbols, pictures, lines, words; everything your brain needs to apply these ideas as effectivly as possible. Plus you have everything you need to reach your goal of optimum health all on one sheet of paper.
There is so much more to mind maps and the power they have to improve every area of your life is astonishing. If you want to learn more about mind maps a great resource is: Mind Map Handbook By Tony Buzan.
Happy Mind Mapping