Clarifying: The tree of possibilities
The mental map approach is used at different levels of research. Here its use is intended to clarify a subject before exploring it.
You can draw, make collages instead of having just words and concepts.
The use of color is an added value to see more clearly in the word tree.
It is inspired by Bernard Werber's tree that I invite you to visit on his website http://www.arbredespossibles.com
Identify the central concept
Note the central concept (the problem or topic summarized in 2 or 3 words) in the middle of a large sheet.
Link related concepts
Link a first series of related words or concepts with a colored line.
Qualify related concepts
For each new concept, decline it by association of ideas, with other words, with a semantic hierarchy. To do this, create spaces (bubbles, squares, potatoes....) connected to each concept in which words, images... will take place... which themselves will be able to redeploy again by connecting with a line to new spaces...
Construct the tree
You will do this, until the constitution of your "tree" and the classification of ideas by themes. You can also link them together with colored lines of related concepts, which belong to two different branches.
Observe and understand
Let your gaze float on your tree. Take turns reading aloud the words on your tree. Let your mind understand, trust it. Highlight the remarkable points. Everyone can spot different elements. Exchange together.
Write the subject
Formulate the problem or topic in tandem in a short sentence beginning with "how to..." in order to a dynamic of construction. Gather the different proposals and choose the most relevant one, which could be a combination of several of them. There may be several topics to explore in the end because the starting point was too complex and required a fragmented approach, at least through simpler entry.
Identify related concepts
Write the related concepts around the circle.