You have probably heard of a mind map program and many others throughout your lifetime, but do you know if they can be trusted, especially the free ones? Well, you are not stupid and you know nothing good comes free and nothing free comes good. However, for the purpose of this article, you will still discover the reasons why the free ones should not be the ones you should get in exchange of your hard earned bucks. Once you have read this article, you will be convinced to get one even it means you have to pay for one.

One of the reasons why the best mind mappers on earth do not choose the free ones is because they have very simple layouts. Now there is nothing wrong with a layout that is simple, really. However, one thing they know is that, a simple layout is not effective. By simple, it simply means you can only see black and white on your mind maps and the connectors are not even the branches. They are just plain lines that work as a connector.

Why is such layouts are not advisable? The originator of the mind mapping methods states that the mind works much better with colors and graphics. Each idea is best represented by a unique color and a unique graphic.

For example, if you are planning for a holiday in London, you draw a cloud in the middle of the blank paper by labeling the word ‘Holiday”. At this point, you can use an air plan graphic to represent your idea. Right after that, you may have other ideas associated with the holiday such as sky diving, hotel, transportation, visiting Bob who is in London and many more. With all these, you need a color and graphic to represent each of those. You may use a parachute graphic and a blue branch to label your sky diving idea and Bob’s head as a graphic and a yellow branch to label your visit to Bob as a part of your plan. With these colors and graphics, you will be sure your mind works very well.

Not only that, an affective mind map program is one that allows you to organize your thoughts in the most workable and applicable ways. If you want to have all these, you need to be able to connect many of your mind maps in one place. For example, if you are drawing a mind map about your life and you label ‘My Life’ in the middle, then you will also have different areas in your life associated with it.

For example, out of the ‘My Life’ cloud in the middle, it will branch out areas like ‘Work’, ‘Relationships’, ‘Family’, ‘Finances’ and many more. If you want to zoom in and magnify a particular area of your life, say, ‘Work’ for example, it will also branch out different things like, ‘Promotion’, ‘Things to do’, ‘Meetings’ or something like that. When you have all these, you need to be able to zoom in these mind maps and look at what is really the ‘Work’ area of your life.

All these features sounded really cook, eh? The bad news is this. You will never find these features from a free mind map program. You really need to invest in a program that make your mind maps a tool that gives direction to different areas of your life.

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