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Need to generate new ideas or find creative solutions to problems? If you haven’t done it yet, consider mind mapping for your next brainstorming session.
To help you get started, we’re sharing an awesome collection of mind map examples and ideas from which you can draw inspiration for your own mind map.
But before we head that way, let’s first quickly discuss what a mind map is.
A mind map is a visualization tool for organizing information in a way that allows you to see associations between concepts, new possibilities, and creative solutions that would otherwise be missed if all your thoughts just get stuck percolating inside your head.
The act of brainstorming your ideas and putting them down on paper in a hierarchy of information (in text or graphics) that you can refer to later is called mind mapping.
The results of a pilot study among college students in Puducherry, India, reveals that mind mapping is an effective method of information retrieval in the academic setting. (Here's our roundup of the best mind map examples for students.)
Mind mapping is great for:
Mind mapping is different from a brain dump, in that the former is a structured way of getting information onto paper, while the latter is simply offloading all the thoughts currently running through your head.
A mind map is great for:
Read on to check out the examples we’ve compiled for you.
This hand-drawn example was created by Paul Foreman to show why he feels visual thinking works (for him).
Creating a mind map by hand offers many advantages:
Here is another mind map from Paul Foreman about doing things differently. The doodles add visual appeal. Some mind map creators sometimes use images as memory prompts when words aren’t effective.
Mind maps are a great tool to help recall and understand lessons. For example, this mind map is about the components of the Food Pyramid and can be used as a lesson handout.
The way the pieces of information are organized in this mind map can help you recall the most important concepts related to each food group.
Many people accomplish their goals more quickly when they have a visual representation of the things they are aiming to achieve. This is the reason vision boards work.
In this example, the owner of the planner created a mind map to allow their brain to see the bigger picture of the goals they are working on for the whole year.
Here is another hand-drawn mind map that features concepts and ideas associated with time management. [Check out the Reasons Why Time Management Is Important.]
Your mind map isn’t just a brainstorming tool—it can also become a work of art. And just like with any work of art, you can choose to use any medium to make it.
Mind map apps are available for those who don’t have the time or don’t feel comfortable creating a mind map by hand.
This example is drawn through a mind mapping app and features the process of making a mind map, as well as the ideas and concepts related to this topic.
♩ ♪ ♫ ♬ The times they are a-changing ♩ ♪ ♫ ♬ pic.twitter.com/F52yzkWo9e— Gemma Correll (@gemmacorrell) June 15, 2020
Just like other visualization tools, mind maps can help clarify your goals and create a plan for achieving them. In this example, we see how someone can envision positive change happening in their life.
This mind map also inspires the person to stay on track with their goals, despite the challenges they meet along the way.
This comics page is also an example of a mind map. It shows the effects of too much solitude in a cramped, inward spiral.
Using a mind map for self-awareness can yield interesting and eye-opening results. Here’s an example of a mind map that also functions as a vision board for uncovering your true self.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed about the things you need to do, a mind map can help you stay in control.
This example shows how a mind map can also be used for planning your weekly to-dos. The versatility of the mind map allows you to use it for plotting out your tasks and schedules for different areas of your life.
Here is a colorful example of a mind map about rules. The visual imagery and the text offer a big-picture view of the topic, as well as the concepts and sub-concepts associated with this topic.
This mind map was created by Jayne Cormie for her journal notes. This example was created digitally.
A mind map is a handy instructional material that can introduce a topic or summarize the important points of a lesson for easier recall and understanding.
In this example, a mind map is used to understand the timeline of World Cup victories.
When mind mapping, you can include as much text and imagery as you want to help give your brain the prompts it needs to recall the information better.
Here’s a mind map that shows the versatility of this brainstorming tool. In this example, we see how the creator of this mind map included all the necessary information for creating a perfect dish.
Take note that this information does not only refer to the recipe for barbecue chicken and red lentil curry. It also features the different stages of preparing, cooking, and serving of a perfect dish.
Learning a new set of vocabulary words, whether for your English class or when learning a foreign language, is easier when you use a mind map.
This example shows how one can strengthen their English vocabulary by creating expansive word associations around the word “animals.”
In this example, we see a mind map for a business studies class, with crucial information about the topic being discussed organized in a neat hierarchy. The way that the topic is presented makes it an easily accessible study material.
This mind map serves as a guide and reminder for doing self-care. The word at the center is “flow.” Around it are different keywords that define what flow is.
Earlier, we mentioned how mind maps are ideal for learning languages. Here’s another awesome example.
This time, the mind map is used to study a particular part of speech: adverbs.
It’s never too early to introduce kids to the concept of mind mapping. This example is proof of that.
It features a child’s ideas on what healthy living is all about.
Through mind mapping, children can understand a concept and see that there is a connection between ideas and actions.
Mind maps are ideal for organizing ideas you get from brainstorming for a project. Here, we see how a mind map is used to plot out how a project will progress. It also shows the milestones of success at each stage of creation.
There you have it—some informative and eye-catching mind map examples.
Each example is a great tool that can harness your thoughts for better creativity, insight, and decision-making. What idea are you going to try first from the ones featured here?
In addition to the examples above, there are mind map templates and apps you can use to speed up the mind mapping process
You can explore other brainstorming strategies to see which one is right for you.
Finally, if you want to take your goal-setting efforts to the next level, check out this FREE printable worksheet and a step-by-step process that will help you set effective SMART goals.