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Anyone Tried Mind Mapping?


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For a while now I've been wondering if there was some way I could organize all the thoughts I have about the various things i'd like to get done, be it health related, stuff to do with my various interests or career-related stuff. It would need to be some sort of online storage, so I could update it from any computer, and it would need to be non-linear and allow me to link various things together.

It would be a way to keep track of the various little projects that I think of or begin and then forget about for ages - I need a way to have all this stuff available in one place. Would also be good if I could embed stuff, be it links, pictures, documents into it (and if I could edit the documents from within a web browser then all the better).

Does anyone know of anything like this?

I came accross Mind Mapping recently and it seems to be kind of what I'm after - although there is so much choice out there it's impossible to know what to go for - the first (and to date, the only) one that I tried (MindMeister) doesnt seem to let you create child nodes beyond the third level (i.e. root/child/grandchild) which seems to be a rather silly limitation. I'd also like to be able to link from maps to sub-maps - so I can click on certain nodes and instead of bringing up a document or going to a website itbrings up another mind map.

Does anyone use anything like this, and do you have reccomendations of tools that could achieve this or something similar?

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I bought the Tony Buzan book when studying for uni, and found the techiniques worked very well for me (passed no problem!)

! still use the same techniques today when studying for my Oracle certification (colours, pictures, tree nodes etc) and find it works very well - and is enjoable too, and a natural way to learn.

In terms of software tools, at my workplace we use Mind Manager, which is good, but has a bit of a learning curve to get it the same results as a piece of paper and coloured pens.

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My boss uses mind mapping to make notes before meetings, he's obviously done it for years, and it's very impressive.

I've tried it, rather than using my scribbled notes, but I think it takes a lot of practice and discipline to get really good.

He said he learnt it on a course at Manchester Business School.

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I used it on a Microsoft project. They had some tool but IMPO it jut added another layer of nothingless that simply took up time and got in the way of actually doing stuff. Cisco EMEA had a similar kind of project tool which again, IMPO, was just a an added layer that took up time and demotivated.

Pen, A4 pad. Write down what you need to do. Put numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, next to each in order of importance. Do the tasks and put a line through each task when completed.

If you want something for your own mind then you need to ground yourself mentally and hence need to consider some kind of meditation.

Stop thinking - the power of now. Live in the moment.

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I first came across the Method Of Loci concept, or Memory Palace about ten years ago, after reading Thomas Harris's Hannibal.

I know in centuries past, in the arabian world, couriers were employed to memorise a number of books, verbatim, before travelling over long distances, instead of carrying the manuscripts.

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Pen, A4 pad. Write down what you need to do. Put numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, next to each in order of importance. Do the tasks and put a line through each task when completed.

That's pretty much what I do.

If you need to decide what to do first, draw a square with 4, in the top left write important and urgent, top right important not urgent, bottom left not important urgent and finally in the last box not important not urgent. Then divide the jobs in to the each section, ideally you should spread the jobs equally. Then do all the jobs in the top left, then top right, bottom left and finally bottom right.

With regard to mind maps their purpose is for memory not organisation. It's a good structure to use in that instance, with regard to the software only allowing 3 node levels I think from when I read the books that's because you don't really want to go more than three levels as at that point it's become too complicated and you should be organising it differently.

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