What are Mindmaps and how are they characterized?

What are Mindmaps and how are they characterized?

Have you ever heard of the term mind mapping? If not, let me help you with that. Mind-mapping is a creative way of taking notes from the mind on the basis of what goes in and out of your mind and jotting them on a piece of paper. Basically, a mind map keeps the major thought at the center and then uses symbols, lines, images etc. to connect to it. All this process of note-taking helps to convert any monotonous information of the mind into a highly organized structure, which ultimately helps to read the mind better.


Mind mapping example 


To make the concept more clear let me compare it with the map of a city. How do you make a city map? In the map, you keep the city at the center and then show its roads, branches etc. Sometimes a map even uses a special shape or an image to indicate landmarks etc. In a similar way, the key thought that originates in the thinking process is the city. The secondary thoughts, solutions, doubts etc. are all the branches and roads. Our interest, relevant ideas are all the special shapes and images on the map. 


Benefit of mind mapping  


The benefit of mind mapping is that it helps to organize our thoughts better. Mind mapping doesn’t require a systematic approach. It just asks you to put your ideas in a place as and when they pop. The map is formed after reorganizing all these thoughts. With the advancement of technologies in this branch of knowledge, the paper and pen way of mind mapping is now not used by many.


Now there are many extensive mind mapping software that helps you to easily organize your scattered thoughts and send them in a well-structured and readable form. Mind mapping is just the reflection of your natural way of thinking expresses in a better graphical form. 


Mind map techniques


To understand the mind mapping concept better, let me delineate its major 5 characteristics:


1. In a mind map, the major thought, idea or subject of focus is always kept at the center in the form of an image or text. 

2. All the secondary thoughts, doubts etc. always scatters out as ‘branches’ from the same central image or text.

3. The branches again contain a special word or image, which is joint with its proper associated line. 

4. If any lesser important thought needs to be represented, it is always represented as the twig and emanates out from its relevant branch. 

5. All these branches connect to form a proper nodal structure. 


All these characteristics form the basic structure of mind mapping. There is no fixed or standard way of creating a mind map. It depends on the personal choice of the mind mapper. If the user feels like adding more keywords or text to a branch, he can do so without any hindrance whatsoever. But a lack of knowledge about how to structure the thoughts well in a mind-map may leave someone in a total confused state. Needless to worry, there are many  software to help you with that. To get the information and inspiration about mindmap making you can explore any of these online sources: Mappio, MindMappingStrategies, Mind Map Art, Mind-Mapping.org etc.  

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