How to Use Mind-Mapping to Organize Your Brain + Prioritize

I know what it feels like to have all of these ideas and dreams and struggle to get started so they can become reality, and if you are anything like me, you literally have one idea after another.

I set lots of high goals with doable action steps – every single month for personal, family and business. As a matter of fact, I have a huge whiteboard that aids me in mind-mapping and prioritizing. The filled in whiteboard serves as a constant reminder to stay focused on what I want to achieve. But mind-mapping can get done on a piece of paper as well and there’s also plenty software and apps that are available too!

RELATED: Analog Tools to Organize Your Brain (or Business) in the Digital Age

A mind map helps you give a visual graph to how everything fits into your world. The process can give you an amazing overlook about how your life or business looks or even how you want it to look, which then, of course, gives you some goals to work towards.

Here’s how to get started:

– Write the goal you are working towards in the center of the page and circle it.
– Brainstorm the tasks that will support your goal. Place them in individual bubbles around your paper.
– Under each bubble, write the action steps it will take to complete the task.
– Prioritize by numbering them in the order you will be working on them.

The last part is critical as you help identify what needs your focus now.

When I have clients who are dealing with too many ideas or overwhelm, I challenge them to use this technique to remove the clutter from their brain and mind-map all of their thoughts onto a piece of paper. Creating this visual map helps categorize projects and check in with yourself on what is important.

For instance, you can have nine different tasks, but only one or two will be on the priority list. While the other seven still need to be completed, they aren’t as crucial at this moment. Once I have completed my mind-map, I will write my goals, tasks and actions into my day planner, identifying the three most important tasks for the day.

Review your goals weekly and acknowledge everything you got done, but also realign if something isn’t working, again using a mind-map to help problem solve.

Overwhelmed? Find out how to use mind-mapping to declutter and organize your brain.

Mind-mapping is not just great for writing down all of your ideas, but it can help you problem solve a frustration you may be experiencing. First, we look at the problem-solving steps:

  • Identify the problem
  • Brainstorm possible solutions
  • Decide what solution you will try.

How to mind-map your problem: 

  • Now get a piece of paper, and in the center write down your problem or frustration.
  • Brainstorm and attach bubbles all over the paper with possible solutions.
  • Check in with your intuition and decide which one you will give a try. Your gut will always know what feels good and what feels right. Try not to let your head and ego take control.
  • To expand on your solution, brainstorm several actions you can take.

A week or so later, re-evaluate the decision and see if it is working or if another solution is better suited. Every time you feel overwhelmed, frustrated, or you are working towards a new goal, use mind-mapping to not only help you create clarity, but also to tap into your creative parts to find possible solutions and steps to keep moving forward.