Are you running out of ideas for your blog?
Do you approach the task of writing a new article with a sense of foreboding, wondering how you are going to come up with yet more interesting and engaging subjects?
Sometimes when I see people whom I admire online bringing ever more brilliant topics to their blog, I wonder how they manage it.
Do they sit on trains on long commuter journeys each morning, thinking up inspiring new ideas?
Or do they pay some talented genius to sit and think up new concepts for them to cover?
I think I have an idea how they generate new material – I reckon the best people out there use a technique called mind mapping.
If you haven’t heard of it before, check this out – it could change your blogging schedule, forever.
The brain is a very complex piece of meat, and it has all sorts of functionality that we normally don’t’ consider in relation to blogging – but by understanding a bit about how it works, we have the capability to unlock the creative process, significantly changing our approach to coming up with new ideas, and then enabling us to relate what we have discovered to the task of generating new content.
Have you heard of mind mapping?
It’s a way of getting both sides of our complicated brains to talk to each other properly at the same time.
Most of the time, our minds don’t bother communicating that well – the left and right side of the brain are a bit like sulky siblings who prefer to forge ahead independently rather than work together.
I don’t know why this is – perhaps one side offended the other at some point in the womb, or maybe they don’t get on well, but for whatever reason, the two sides of our brain don’t combine forces very often to work together.
The good news is, you can train them to join up when you need some serious thinking doing, and when this takes place there can be some really powerful results.
The left side of your brain is a bit like the office geek.
It likes numbers, words, rationality, patterns, and processes. If it were a human, it would probably wear an anorak. It thrives on logic, rules and ordering perception.
The right side is completely different – it responds brilliantly to abstract concepts, the imagination, ‘big picture’ thinking, images, symbols and feelings. If we were to make the right side of our brains human, it would probably wind up looking a bit like a cuddly kitten. Or your mum.
So, these two apparently incompatible sides of your mind work brilliantly at their set roles – but even better when they come together. Mind mapping is a technique specifically designed to get both sides working in harmony, unlocking your creative and analytical potential.
Here’s how you do it.
Grab a huge piece of paper – I mean HUGE. And lots of coloured pens. Steal them from your kids, or head off to a stationery shop to stock up. The colours are for your cuddly right brain, to get it thinking imaginatively.
Now, start in the middle of your page with a big heading – one that sums up what you want to achieve – i.e., ‘Blog content’.
Use different colours to branch off from this central theme, mapping out all the different things you think of across the page. Don’t limit your thinking – write down everything that comes to mind.
Rake through your industry, what interests you, current research, memories – anything. As you carry on, your brain will start to work to its absolute best.
There is some serious research which has gone in to exactly how to mind map successfully – Check out www.mind-mapping.co.uk for more details on how to get the best out of your brain, and software to support you.
Have you used mind mapping before? Did it work for you? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.