Being creative and coming up with new ideas needs a kick start from time to time with the help of the right techniques.
One powerful technique that will help you get your mental gears going is reverse mind mapping. In this post, we’ll use reverse mind mapping as a way to get new and interesting ideas.
What is reverse mind mapping?
Most of us are familiar with the term ‘mind-mapping’. It’s a tool and a technique where you create connections between a central idea and sub-categories of that topic. It gives you a clearer picture of a topic and uses visual imagery to make sense of large subjects.
You can use it as a learning tool or one that’s good for explaining complex ideas.
Reverse mind mapping, as the name implies, does this in the reverse form. You compile a number of ideas and look for themes to find one big concept to focus on.
Are you ready to learn how to do reverse mind mapping? Here are the steps to follow:
Brainstorm all your ideas
Do you want to write a book? Or perhaps you have to create a blog and don’t know what it should be about.
Reverse mapping works especially well when struggle to make sense out of many concepts. For your first step, carry out a brainstorming activity.
Use a word processor or a pen and paper. Note that you can also use this if you’re working with a team.
Start by writing down all the ideas in your mind and allow others to share anything that comes to the top of their mind. It’s essential to not edit, correct, or judge anything at this point. Let ideas come up and note them down. Once you’ve exhausted everything you can think of, move on to the next step.
Once you’ve brainstormed your ideas, discard ones that obviously aren’t any good or are completely impractical. You’re left with potential ideas.
Now, start grouping these ideas based on themes. You’ll notice that some ideas have similar qualities or can be grouped under a specific head. Perhaps you may find a plot for a film as you do this which will help you determine which genre it belongs to.
If you’re creating a blog, then you should find categories for different post ideas which will help make your blog more organized.
If you’re trying to build a mission statement for a new business, then you may find that the themes appear in the form of values. Things like good customer support, loyalty, and other themes that reflect how your business works.
At this point, you should gain more clarity and a sense of focus regarding the meaning of your work.
Find the central idea
Once you’ve found different themes for your list of ideas, you can look for even higher-level themes. Depending on the kind of work you’re doing, you can find a single big theme or a few larger ones.
Once you have a central idea, you have a single focus point around which your work makes sense. Your central idea could be the main theme of your book, it can inspire your business’s mission statement, it may help you create a great blog name, and do much more.
The goal of reverse mind mapping is to find focus in the different things you do and care about. Use it in different aspects of your life to find a driving ‘Why’ for your job, personal life, and goals.
Reverse mind-mapping is a different and effective way to generate ideas. It also helps you organize your thoughts and find meaning in what you are doing.
When you experience creative blocks, use different techniques to overcome them. Along with reverse mind mapping, try doodling, freewriting, or going for walks.
You’ll find untapped resources right within your mind.