Published on May 20, 2011, by in Technology.

You know I love Opus Domini for daily planning, but what do you use for creative thinking? I use My Thoughts for Mac by Mode de Vie Software.

Disclaimer: I don’t receive any compensation from My Thoughts for Mac or Mode de Vie Software for reviewing their software.

Mind mapping is the brainchild of Tony Buzan who created this unique and I think fairly effective brainstorming model. I use it for everything from sermon prep to SWOT analysis to business planning. My Thoughts is an elegant mac only entry into the growing mind mapping arena.

My Thoughts feels like what a mac application should feel like. It just works!

When you first open the software you are presented with a ‘central thought’ to start from. You can rename that to whatever you want and add branches (ideas or keywords) by clicking on the plus button on any thought. All branches and thoughts can be dragged and rearranged easily just like you would expect them to.

In addition, you can add images and icons to every branch from the built-in library of over 300 images. Of course you can also drag and drop your own images onto existing thoughts. The inspector lets you change the fonts, colour of branches, shapes and more. The more colour and visual you make your map the more creative you will feel.

You can also create links or relationships between ideas that are not on the same branch. A particularly cool feature that I like is the ability to drag urls from your browser directly on a thought and it will store it. And when you can’t really communicate that thought with just a keyword or two, you can also add notes to any individual idea.

So what do you do with a finished mind map? Well depending on your purposes, you might want to export your mind map into Word and create a more traditional document or use it as a graphic in a Keynote presentation. My Thoughts will also export an OPML file that can be read by outlining software like OmniOutliner. Whatever export option you choose, you will be able to transform your mind map into a workable plan with ease.

You can buy My Thoughts for $49 for a single user or $69 for a family license. There’s also a free trial available on their website. Give it a try and see your creativity increase.

If you do use My Thoughts for Mac, I would love to hear your creative thoughts on mind mapping in the comments below. In the meantime, another elegant mind map made with My Thoughts for Mac can be found on professional mind mapper Hans Buskes’ blog.