I was 46 this week. Which is no special landmark, in fact it is something or nothing. A non-entity of a birthday I suppose.
Throughout the week building up to my birthday I had been asking myself what has brought me to this point in my life. It certainly doesn’t feel it has been part of a master plan. Saying that I can think of a number of goals along the way.
I thought it would be interesting to piece them all my stories together from birth until now to actually see what has brought me to this point. A memoir of sorts.
I suppose there was a couple of things I wanted to achieve:
- I wanted to see if I had the memory to be able to remember enough events in my life to make it meaningful
- To map out events in my life that have shaped who I am
- To document my life for future members of my family to read when I am no longer around to tell them
As some of you will know I am a sucker for a mind map. So that is where I started. I first drew a mind map of my life. I find this method of bringing my thoughts together incredibly easy and within minutes I had filled a page with recollection from different times in my life. I don’t think in straight lines so that is why I like working with mind maps as they allow you to leave a subject and then come back and add more at a later stage.
Once I had my life mindmap I could then move onto more detailed maps of each aspect of my life. This again was suprisingly easy to do and I found myself triggering memories in the dark recesses of my mind, some of them that have not seen the light of day for over 30 years. Below is a picture of my mindmap for the first 10 years of my life. It started quite slowly and then it just started flowing, and I found myself coming back again and again to add more.
This is project is really still in its infancy, but I can tell you it is really satisfying and enlightening. At times it has been quite emotional, which I suppose is not surprising really for someone who cries watching X Factor.
Now I have a mindmap for each stage of my life I have started writing my stories. When I have a few put together I may share them on here, we shall see.
As an exercise so far I have found it enjoyable, which I suppose is all you can ask for. When you are trying to make sense of your life and think about your future it is vital to know where you are and how you got there.
I will keep you posted on my progress.