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How to Use Bubble.us to Make 2008 Your Most Productive Year Ever

How to Use Bubble.us to Make 2008 Your Most Productive Year Ever
mindmap of lifehack article thoughts

    Bubbl.us has been featured on Lifehack before as a top web-based tool for 2007. Now that we’re moving into 2008 it’s time to really kick this app into gear and show you ways to use it to make 2008 your most productive year.

    A little background on Bubbl.us

    bubbl.us is a flash-based mindmap creator, which enables you to create interactive mindmaps, which can be shared and added to. It is a free tool, which is fantastic as it is one of the tools that has been great for me towards the end of this year. The mindmaps can be exported, like the one above, and can be as small or as large as you want them to be.

    The above example shows a quick brainstorming session for articles to write on Lifehack. Whilst jotting down a few ideas in their various categories, I decided to write on the tool itself as I had found it so useful for so many other things in my life.

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    5 ways to use Bubbl.us to explode your productivity

    1. Brainstorming ideas for business

    Brainstorming is a process whereby one or more people come up with and record as many ideas as spring into their minds, whether they are ridiculous or brilliant. Every new idea can lead to another idea, which can eventually lead to the winning idea for your business.

    The process of using Bubbl.us to brainstorm is quite simple. You designate someone who is familiar with Bubbl.us (and it only takes 5 minutes to get familiar with it) to enter in all of the ideas that they and everyone else comes up with. Once each session is complete, the session can be saved for future use, it can be printed out, and it can be saved as a jpeg or PNG or exported for use in a website or as an XML sheet.

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    1. Use for family tree building

    With the ability to create multiple ‘parent’ boxes and ‘child’ boxes, Bubbl.us is a fantastic tool for creating family trees quickly and easily. What would be good is if it could insert images into the child and parent boxes; however, it is still a good tool for this activity. So for the genealogists out there, you could start collecting your family data from anywhere in the world and add to your family tree map from anywhere in the world — and nvite other family members, wherever they are, do the same.

    1. Creating flow charts

    This is another extremely useful way to use Bubbl.us. You have seen flow charts in technical books and software manuals, and they are great visual representations for training employees to use software, follow business processes, or anywhere a yes/no situation might occur. And when processes or policies change, they can be esily updated from any computer.

    1. For creating lists

    I used Bubbl.us to create my Christmas list this year and it was a great way to visualize the list. I usually do this on a piece of paper which is then thrown away only to be done again the next year. Using Bubble.us this way means I always have a saved copy of my Christmas list and I never forget anyone. Plus, I can easily add more people whenever I need.

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    The same goes for birthday card lists. Again this is something that rarely changes; now I have my birthday card list with one box for each month, and around each all the people we need to send cards to each month.

    I have also created lists for shopping, which I can use repeatedly as we tend to buy the same things every month.

    1. Money making ideas

    I am always on the lookout for new ways to make money (legally, of course) but I find that ideas pop into my head at the most awkward times. Now, whenever I have one of these ideas I write it down in the notebook I carry around and transfer it as quickly as possible to my Bubbl.us account.

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    when I look at the Bubbl.us account under the ‘money making ideas’ file I brainstorm how I could make money from any particular idea. Then I either reject it and delete or keep it saved on the file.

    This has helped me tremendously in my online money making activities as I have carried out a lot of research after brainstorming and this allows me to reject or keep an idea.

    It also helps my conscious mind to stop rejecting ideas immediately, which tends to happen with many people. You know what I mean: you think you have a great idea and you say ‘yeah that could work’ and get all excited and then 2 minutes later your conscious mind rejects it and you forget all about it. Now every idea is a viable option and your conscious mind has been bypassed, to a degree, allowing your unconscious mind to work on the idea.

    What other uses can you think of?

    If you haven’t already done so why not visit Bubbl.us and let us know other ways you could use this versatile web app.

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    Last Updated on March 13, 2019

    How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

    How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

    Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

    You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

    Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

    1. Work on the small tasks.

    When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

    Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

    2. Take a break from your work desk.

    Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

    Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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    3. Upgrade yourself

    Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

    The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

    4. Talk to a friend.

    Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

    Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

    5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

    If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

    Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

    Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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    6. Paint a vision to work towards.

    If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

    Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

    Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

    7. Read a book (or blog).

    The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

    Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

    Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

    8. Have a quick nap.

    If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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    9. Remember why you are doing this.

    Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

    What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

    10. Find some competition.

    Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

    Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

    11. Go exercise.

    Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

    Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

    As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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    Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

    12. Take a good break.

    Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

    Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

    Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

    Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

    More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

    Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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