Full of ideas? That’s good news.
Your ideas are stored everywhere on paper lists, computer files, notebooks, etc.?
This article will help you organize your ideas effectively.
Organizing your ideas is essential to take advantage of them, collect the substance and be able to use them in an operational way.
Your ideas need to be organized for two main reasons:
- So you can mobilize them at the right time for your projects.
- To make them useful and effective in the conduct of your projects and help you make the right decisions.
Without structure and coherence, ideas actually lose value. It is a bit like a book in a library: if it is not stored in its place, it is lost. It does exist somewhere, but it is impossible to enjoy its content because it is not where it should be.
With ideas, it’s a bit the same. You need to be able to remember that they exist, of course, but also to use those ideas when you need them the most and identify the most useful ones.
In this article, I give you today a method to organize his ideas effectively. You will learn some tips from my personal organizing system to finally get the most out of your ideas.
This organizational strategy consists of 4 steps.
Step 1: To organize your ideas, start by grouping your ideas together
If your ideas are all over the place, the first step is to put them all in one document.
This grouping takes place either as a mind map (I invite you to click on the previous link if you have not read the article I recently wrote. It explains precisely how this type of tool works).
You can also use a large blank sheet or a large whiteboard.
Visually, you will have all your ideas in front of you. Then you can work on the second step, which is structuring.
Step 2: Categorize ideas to make them coherent
As a first step, you will put together ideas on the same theme. You may realize that some ideas repeat themselves (you will then gather them under the same name) or contradict each other (it is up to you to see which one you will remember).
Little by little, you will identify 4 or 5 major themes. Mark in large character these headings to make them stand out clearly. You can also use different colors.
The second part of the analysis is to understand how these different themes relate to each other:
Are they independent of each other?
One is the prerequisite of another
Do they contradict each other?
Here you will focus your analysis on possible links and associations.
Now let’s go to step three…
Step 3: Prioritize ideas
This third step is based on prioritizing your ideas.
In each theme you have created, identify the most important ideas, those that are secondary and those that are even more insignificant. This step is important for implementing your ideas.
This way you will know what to start with and you will not dwell on secondary or ancillary ideas. On the contrary, thanks to this structuring of ideas, you will be able to focus fully on the essentials.
We summarize: organizing these ideas consists of grouping your ideas, structuring your ideas within themes and then prioritizing your themes within them.
Make sure you understand the previous steps before proceeding to the last step.
Step 4: Synthesize ideas
The last step in the process of organizing his ideas is synthesis.
With the synthesis of your ideas, you benefit from a global vision of all your ideas and you do not get lost in the details.
Take the main sections you have created, the links you have identified and the prioritizations you have made, and materialize the whole in the form of a diagram. Again, the mind mapping tool is very powerful. Thanks to it, you will only remember a few words or an image for each idea.
And all of a sudden, you have before you all your ideas.
You know exactly how they work and you can involve them in your projects at any time.