When people think of a mind map, the images of the hit detective show Sherlock tend to come to mind. Vivid building and giant, sweeping images and memories replaying on movie screens make for a wonderful, cinematic masterpiece. However, mind mapping is a very real practice that is helpful in many situations. You can use mind mapping in your everyday life for building routines, delivering presentations, or planning events.
There are a few extremely useful techniques for mind mapping, including multiple templates and ways in which to successfully create your own mind map.
What is a Mind Map?
Many of you may be thinking, if a mind map isn’t a giant, sweeping palace inside your brain, what is it? A Mind Map is a way to brainstorm and organize thoughts and ideas effectively. This process is fairly organic and doesn’t require any set format or a rigid visual structure. This technique is a visual mnemonic tool for easy recall and puts a visualization with the things you need to remember. A mind map can be used for anything. For instance, you could use a mind map to turn a grocery list into a colorful diagram that allows you to better remember the things you need to purchase!
The possible uses for a mind map are simply endless.
What Is a Mind Map Template?
A mind map template is a visual representation of a mind map. It is a diagram that you use to represent tasks, words, or concepts. Templates for a mind map can take many forms. From webs to pie charts, these diagrams are created for you to be able to make associations and representations. These diagrams are external representations of your internal mind, so whatever best represents the workings of your mind will work for your mind map.
Benefits of a Mind Map Template
There are several benefits to using a mind map template:
- It can help you to string your ideas together more quickly: Sine mind maps were created to be used as quick recall pieces; they are also highly effective at allowing you to come up with ideas more quickly. As such, it allows you to make connections more quickly and easily where you may not have been able to while utilizing other methods.
- Allows for quicker recall: Utilizing a mind map allows you to have quick recall when you are giving your presentation or while you are performing the task you created the map for.
- Mind Maps are versatile: Because of how versatile they are, mind maps can be used for almost anything that you want. Whether it’s a grocery list or a list of home repairs, a presentation or information on your resume you want to remember for an interview…you can utilize the same mind map template for anything.
- Mind maps provide an overall view: Mind maps provide an overall, broad view of the topic that you are using it for. It allows you to see, as a whole, the ideas that you are bringing together.
Mind Map Templates & Examples
Essential Elements of a Mind Map Template
While every mind map is different, there are a few essential elements that every effective mind map should include:
- The main idea – This is the focus of the mind map.
- The main themes – These are subtopics that “branch” from the main idea
- Branches – These are keywords or images that allow for your association
- “Twigs” – Topics of lesser importance within the branches are called “twigs” because they branch from a branch
- A connected structure – The entire structure must be overall connected so that you don’t lose your main focus.
If your mind map includes these in its structure, you have a solid mind map template created.
How to Use a Mind Map Template
Mind map templates are easy to use. The first thing you need to do is pick a template design that you like. Once you’ve picked your design, you will need to understand the parts. Knowing the difference between the main idea, a branch, and the twigs will help you to understand what information should be plugged in.
When using a template, it is important that you start with the main idea first and work outward. After the main idea, you need to develop the branches and then the twigs. Making sure that all topics are connected is the most important thing to remember when you utilize a mind map template.
How To Create a Mind Map (Step-by-Step)
When you are working with a mind map, you should work in a specific order so that you do not cause yourself confusion.
- Begin with the main focus
The main focus of your mind map is essential. Everything is built around this central idea, so it is important that you make sure to come up with this first and fill it into your mind map framework.
- Work in some branches
Branches serve as an outline of the main topic. This helps you to add more details and flesh out your topic.
- Twig time!
You want to make sure that you have everything fleshed out within your branches. That’s why twigs are important. You need to make sure that all of your ideas are thoroughly developed so that you know where to speak when they are presented.
- Add pictures and colors
Color coding your mind map can make it easier to use and more fun. Pictures also allow for the easier association between ideas within your brain, so ideas will flow more freely.
- Ask for help!
Mind maps can be collaborative efforts and do not have to be stuck to an individual person. You can use these for team projects to help you keep a team on track. You can also simply ask for feedback to help you develop your mind map further.
Whether you’re trying to remember an important presentation for work or you’re just looking for a fun, memorable way to get your shopping done, mind mapping is a great tool to utilize. You can use the same mind map template for multiple things, or you can find different mind maps that work for each thing you are trying to remember. No matter what the purpose of your mind map, it is a great tool and technique to get used to making your everyday life more colorful.