A life map is a timeline that includes key moments from the past, helping you gain a broader perspective of the goals you're trying to achieve and your progress toward those goals. You can also use a life map to explore future plans, projections, and goals.
Life maps feature visual elements, such as photos, drawings, symbols, and icons. These visual elements provide additional context and make your life map easier to scan and understand.
As the name "life map" suggests, you can use these maps to explore your own personal life and goals, but you can also use them to explore the timeline of a company, project, or product. Life maps are powerful strategic planning tools that help you organize information and make better, more informed decisions.
Life maps provide a framework for a chronological look at a company, project, or product. Analyzing a project's historical progress helps you see recurring issues, repeated themes, and other valuable insights. Common life map use cases include:
Use a life map to set team goals and track progress. When taking the time to plan and organize company goals, it helps you appropriately allocate team members to the right roles and tasks and ensures successful project completion. The life map format helps managers and individual contributors achieve goals while sticking to a timeline.
A life map is an ideal format for displaying a company's history. When starting with the company's founding date, companies can create a history life map that includes mergers and acquisitions, key executive hires, product launches, and other major milestones. Business leaders can use a life map to show their long-term success, reflect on growth, and plan for the future.
Life maps are a useful strategic tool for project planning. Create a life map to display the timeline of a project from inception to completion. Add in sequential steps and (or) project milestones, along with any important dates. Project managers often use life maps to track their progress.
You can create a life map to track industry trends to gain a better perspective on industry ebbs and flows. Pick an industry and a timeframe and make a life map with details about the state of the marketplace, key industry players, and notable events. Marketers and strategists often find patterns, cycles, and other insights when taking a chronological look at trends.
Life maps provide a broad look at a specific timeframe or project, often inspiring further inquiry and deeper exploration. Notable benefits of life maps include:
Life maps present a sequential layout of major events and milestones over the life of a company, project, or product. This zoomed-out view helps highlight long-term growth and advancement toward goals.
When looking at a comprehensive overview of a project, it's easier to see patterns and draw conclusions. The timeline format makes life maps ideal for this type of strategic analysis. After you fill your life map with project details, you should spend some time reviewing it to see what insightful conclusions you can draw.
When deeply involved in a project, it's easy to get caught up in specific details and lose sight of the larger picture and overall goals. Life maps keep you on track, showing you a full look at the project—including tasks, milestones, and goals. With the complete picture, you can more effectively prioritize tasks and ensure all team members understand their roles.
A life map can provide a practical roadmap for project workflows and progress toward company goals. You can use a life map to communicate expectations and standards, ensuring all team members are on the same page within a company or project.
Follow these steps to create a life map:
You can make life maps by hand or in any graphic design program or use a program specifically designed for life map making. MindManager, an industry-leading life map software, allows you to create complex, detailed life maps with ease.
MindManager's key benefits include:
MindManager helps you synthesize ideas and information by providing a simple, intuitive framework for organizing your thoughts. With MindManager, you and your team can clarify complexity and collaborate in new and unexpected ways.
MindManager comes pre-installed with many life map templates. To use these templates:
One example of a life map is a timeline of a company's history. A company history life map would include the founding date, key events, and major milestones. Business leaders can use life maps to assess progress and set goals for the future.
Life maps vary depending on each specific use case, but all life maps should include:
Life maps are an invaluable tool for visualizing your past progress and setting targets for the future. Professionals across various disciplines use mind maps for project planning, goal making, showing company history, mapping industry trends, and more.
MindManager offers a selection of premade life map templates and a library of images and icons to enhance your visualization. To start making your first life map, try MindManager today.