Wouldn’t it make our lives easier if our minds were more predictable? It would be much easier to get from A to Z if we could think linearly. Our minds would function as a Gantt chart.
We could also run the risk to ignore important, related ideas.
Take a look at Sherlock Holmes’s way of thinking through problems. He is terrible at staying in the moment, but he can connect discrete facts that would otherwise go overlooked.
He is a legendary detective because of his ability to use his intuition to connect ideas with concrete facts.
BBC’s BBC interpretation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s prolific character sees Sherlock disappear into a “mind Palace” to make the connections necessary to solve a problem. The flashbacks of Sherlock’s thought process are shown visually in the show.
You can see how ideas are derived from a central idea.
This is how a dummy Sherlock’s mind Palace might look:
Photo credit: MsAlayniousCreations
What is the technical term for this type of graph?
They are also extremely valuable for project managers.
What is mind mapping? It works. How can project managers use it? Continue reading to learn more!
What is Mind Mapping?
Mind mapping is a graphing technique that shows concepts related to a central idea. The image shows the relationships between pieces of the whole, including outward branches and specific ideas within them.
Mind mapping is all about simplicity. Creators will likely make full use of their space, using colors, images and words to communicate their ideas.
Tony Buzan, an educational consultant focusing primarily on creativity, memory speed reading and popular psychology, first introduced them. However, mind maps can be traced back to Leonardo Da Vinci and Cassiodorus as well as Roman philosopher Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius.
Porphyry’s Tree & English Translation
The Tree of Porphyry is perhaps the most well-known and oldest form of mind mapping. It was a philosophy tool that was used to explain Aristotle’s species category definitions. The Wikipedia article has more information about this mind map. Ironically, the Tree of Porphyry is widely regarded as the first example of a mindmap, but Porphyry didn’t consider his own tree to be a diagram.
Although “mindmap” isn’t a term that has been around forever, it has been used across cultures from China to Europe to America. Because it draws on all aspects of our brains, the concept works.
What psychology is behind Mind Mapping?
Let’s take a look at how mind mapping works with the brain. There has been a lot of research about mind mapping and how it can help with education and learning. Let’s take a closer look:
Okay, we get it. Mind maps are effective and make people more productive and intelligent members of a team. But why?
Mind maps are, in short, more natural than any other form written communication. It’s no wonder that humans have used them for millennia.
How do you make a mind map?
Mind maps are very simple to create. Mind maps can be broken down into four steps by project managers.
Here are some suggestions to make the most out of your mind map.
You might end up with something like the following:
Mind Mapping Laws by Tony Bulzan
Declutter by Paul Foreman
Leoni Wharton: Increasing Productivity
You might be thinking, Rachel, this is all great and good, but how do I create a mind map? I’m not very artistic.”
Like everything else, there is a mind map and software for that.
Methods of Mindmapping: Paul Foreman
What is the best mind mapping software available to project managers?
These characteristics are important for project managers when choosing mind mapping software. This is a subset of project management software and idea management software.