Mindmap as a brainstorming and thought-ordering method

Mindmap as a brainstorming and thought-ordering method

Mindmap, Ex. 1

It was – as far as I remember – the first creativity technique I got to know during my training: Mindmapping. 15 years later I hardly use mindmaps at all. I ask myself why. Too cumbersome, too old-fashioned or too elaborate?

The mind map brainstorming and thought organizing method

My generation already learned about mind maps in school. We use Mindmaps , to discuss books and to internalize school material. Software-based mindmaps emerged in the wake of digitization; the first tool I used back at university was VUE. Thomas Mauch has already written in detail about e-tools and deployment methods here. I wanted to do the self-test in handwriting again and made a mind map on the advantages and disadvantages of the mind map from my point of view.

Negative

When creating this mindmap, I kept running into the "space allocation" hurdle. It was not clear to me from the beginning which terms I would use in the main branches and how I would connect them. That’s why at the beginning I didn’t know where to branch the branches, because I didn’t know what else I would attach to it. Which brings me to another negative point: the expansion of a mind map is limited to the size of the sheet. Sub-branches are only possible as long as there is room for them. Later thoughts may have no more space, or you have to reorganize the mindmap.

One can reproach me that all these points become obsolete with the use of a tool like "Mindmeister" or "Mindnode. Nevertheless: Anyone who uses software to create mind maps will also have to limit themselves, because the font size can quickly become too small.

All the time spent on brainstorming, keyword selection for the main branches and the fair copy (if done by hand) was not worth it in my opinion. But I am aware that this mindmap as a topic is also not typical and therefore not representative. In any case, I had trouble finding the main topic at first. At first, my mind map looked pretty chaotic. The main term (mindmapping experience) was not in the focus. One could think that the main term is "difficulties".

I am definitely missing the exercise.

Whether your colleagues can read or use a mindmap depends on whether you create it together or – if you have created it alone – whether you include verbal comments. It is difficult to create self-explanatory mindmaps.

On the other hand, if you use it just for yourself, you can build a clearly structured presentation, a project overview and much more on it.

Positive

While drawing, various thought processes take place. As soon as you have written down a keyword, you start to link it to the existing ones and to search for new ones. This is very positive for the flow of thoughts. I could always link somewhere.

Creative minds get their money’s worth and complete the keywords with pictures and colors.

Mindmaps are enormously versatile, as a conversation with my wife showed me: she used the method during her nursing training to monitor her patients (medication, progress, indication, etc).), for the representation of disease patterns (what is typical for disease X?) and used for much more. Projects can be tracked and topics discussed.

Experienced mindmappers will not want to do without their tool. I would probably need more practice, so that the advantage of the technique becomes tangible to me.

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