Productivity and GTD

The Map of Aims - the Way to Productive Life

AUTHOR: Samantha R. Gilbert
Map of aims

When you’re traveling, you usually plan your trip, meaning you organize your routes and sightseeing in advance because you want to get the most of your journey.

Do you do the same in your everyday life? Do you have plans for every aspect of your life? Well, you should, if you want to get the most of it.

That’s why it’s essential to set goals and plan your future.

There are many effective ways to set your goals, and one such method is a map of aims.

Aim for the right target

For starters, it’s crucial to aim for the right target when you set your goals. In other words, make sure your goal is something that you really want.

Aiming for something that you truly want will give you strength and determination to carry on when doubts and obstacles arise. Otherwise, you’ll easily quit your goal if it isn’t something really worth to you.

The best way to make sure you set a right goal is to imagine it as fulfilled. How do you feel? If you’re happy, then that’s it.

How to create a map of aims

Mind mapping is an effective method to structure your goals and accomplish them. More importantly, you’ll make new connections and draw different conclusions that you couldn’t do with traditional goal setting.

Let’s see how this process looks like.

1. Create a central idea

The central idea represents your goal or topic you’d like to explore further. For instance, it can be Side hustle if you’re looking for new ways to earn extra money or 2019 if you’re making plans for the next year. In other words, it can be anything you’d like to brainstorm on, your creative project, new diet plan; basically every aspect of your life you want to make more productive.

Once you’ve chosen your goal, write it in the center of the page and add an image that represents it. Pictures are worth a thousand words and they will stimulate your memory and thoughts.

2. Add branches to your mind map

The second step is to add linear branches from your central topic. They are the main branches, and they represent key themes. For example, if you’re planning side hustle, write down all your expertise, or if you’re making plans, then write down all aspects of life that are important to you.

Make sure you use different colors for each main branch to make your mind map more effective. Colors are thinking a tool that allows you to order, code, remember or highlight different concepts.

These main branches will develop into child branches to further explore each theme.

Mind maps are very flexible, so you can always add new branches whenever a new idea comes to your mind.

3. Add keywords

The rule is to add only one word, one key idea per branch and avoid using sentences. In that way, each key notion isn’t trapped in a phrase, and it can generate more ideas. As a result, you’ll be more creative and come up with fantastic ideas.

For instance, if you write new job as one of your goals, it will restrict you to only think about new opportunities, forgetting about the opportunities at your current job or your hobbies.

When you’re jotting down your keywords and brainstorming about your goal, ask yourself these crucial questions:

  • What one next step would have the most significant impact?
  • What one small action can I take in the next week?

If your goal is to improve your grades, maybe one small step that you can take is to write finally that essay that you were postponing. Still, if it sounds like an impossible mission with all your tests and assignments, then add a new branch with help. Maybe cheap custom essay writing services would be the answer you were looking for.

These questions will make sure that your ideas are followed by actions which will undoubtedly lead to the achievement of your goals.

Remember that there are no rules! Try to have fun and forget about your inner critic. Even when you think that you’re finished, don’t stop – you still need to catch hidden germ of ideas.

What’s next?

Once you’ve completed your mind map, you should put it somewhere you can see it and review it every couple of months. Don’t worry; you don’t need to look at it every day since your subconscious has picked all the ideas and will be working on them.

However, it would be useful to review and set new small next steps that would have a significant impact on your goal. Therefore, it would be convenient to have a mind map check-in appointment with yourself every month.

Also, don’t worry if you change your mind about your goal, it’s absolutely normal. Your goals shouldn’t be set in stone; they might change along the way. The most important thing is that you enjoy in their realization and the whole process. If not, then you should consider changing your approach and find a new, better way to achieve your goals.

Final thoughts

Map of aims is a fun and efficient way to structure your goals and find new productive ways to achieve them. More importantly, it is action driven method so that the results won’t miss.

The only thing left to do is to try it. You won’t lose anything, but you could accomplish a lot.

One comment

31e9edb3d10859de6e8c0396325ef3ec
Commented 10 days ago Michał

Nice approach but I’d really like to see a sample aims map.

31e9edb3d10859de6e8c0396325ef3ec Michał

Nice approach but I’d really like to see a sample aims map.

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