How to use Mind Mapping to improve your memory

You’ve probably heard of mind mapping as a useful technique for capturing complex ideas and thoughts and translating them into words and images. But mind maps can do more than that. Your memory also benefits from the mental process of making a mind map.

And memory is such an important element of any learning process that without it all our we wouldn’t learn anything at all. Some people are born with photographic recall memory, however if you’re anything like me your memory will fail at the most annoying times. The great news though is that memory can be improved significantly by using some basic memory techniques.

It’s also worth noting the following facts about memory.

1. Many memory problems can simply be attributed to not paying proper attention to the task at hand. If you truly concentrate on what you are attempting to learn, you’ll be surprised how much better your memory performs.

2. When learning anything new you can absorb and remember new information easily by connecting the new information with the application of the learning. For example, you are more likely to remember the road rules when you are applying them to your driving, rather than trying to learn them from a book without setting foot in a car. This will help you to see the relational aspects of certain road rules and give greater meaning and significance to the information learnt.

3. Studies have shown that memory is improved by engaging both sides of your brain. This is called whole-brain thinking. The right side of your brain controls your creativity, artistic abilities, linguistic skills and imagination, while the left side of your brain is logical, organized and analytical. By engaging both the left and right brains, by say doodling or drawing when you are describing a logical sequence, will boost your mind power and your memory.

4. A picture is worth a thousand words and your memory will have much greater recall if you can visualize what you want to remember.

5. You can use a number of other techniques to remember sequences such as acronyms, grouping of similar thoughts and linking ideas or pieces of information by making a story out of them.

Now these are interesting facts about memory and how you can improve it, but another simple and extremely powerful technique for enhancing memory is by Mind Mapping. The Mind Mapping technique was described by British Psychologist Tony Buzan, who developed the technique based on the theories of memory.

The main advantage of the mind mapping technique is that it engages both sides of the brain and therefore whole-brain thinking, and it involves each of the 5 points discussed above.

So not only is the Mind Mapping technique and excellent tool for expressing your thoughts and ideas on paper, it has been shown to improve memory, as well as enhancing creativity, imagination and insight.
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