Monday, October 13, 2008

Mind Mapping fever.

Speaking of fever, I'm recovering from one right now as I'm typing this. My father just came home from Baguio and bought this powdered ginger tea which I'm drinking now. We call it "Salabat" here in the Philippines. Yummy.

As I'm preparing for the workload this week, I realized something:

The amazing brain tool Mind Mapping is catching on pretty quick with our clients! It's amazing to receive phone calls and emails everyday asking about Mind Mapping. I don't mind explaining the Mind Mapping tool to those who inquire, because I have seen how this tool is so cutting-edge.

In fact, we will be having a 2-day in-house Mind Mapping workshop with BP Philippines this coming Thursday and Friday with Eric Villarama. The following week after that, we will be having another in-house with the same company, but facilitated by Bernard Marquez - who will be arriving from the US very soon.


We'll be bringing back Mind Mapping for Kids this November, so stay tuned for that. ^_^

Monday, September 22, 2008


This is my quote for the week. Hope you enjoy it.

"I am extraordinarily patient, provided I get my own way in the end." - Margaret Thatcher

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Seven Memory Sins

The setting: Leisurely stroll in a mall.

The event: A person notices you and calls your name. You turn to say, “Hi… ah…”. But for the life of you, you can’t seem to recall the name. Yet, the person’s face is familiar to you.

Before you start singing John Mayer’s song, “Oh, it’s another social casualty… score one more for me”, have you ever stopped to wonder why we often have these memory lapses – especially when it comes to people’s names?

In an article from Buzan Australia, it mentions the book “Seven Sins of Memory”, written by Daniel Schacter, Chair of the Harvard University’s Deparment of Psychology. According to Schacter, “Memory’s malfunctions can be divided into seven fundamental transgression or “sins”:

· Transience – weakening or loss of memory over time. The main culprit in many memory problems.

· Absent-mindedness – misplacing keys or forgetting a meeting typically occurs because we are preoccupied with distracting issues or concerns and we don’t focus our attention on what we need to remember. We haven’t forgotten it; it never registered in our memory in the first place!

· Blocking – the thwarted search for information that we may be desperately trying to retrieve. We’ve all failed to produce a name to accompany a face, only to have it pop up unexpectedly a few hours/days later.

· Misattribution – assigning a memory to the wrong source. It is far more common than most people realise and has potentially profound implications in legal settings.

· Suggestibility – memories can be implanted through leading questions, comments or suggestions when a person is asked to recall a past experience.

· Bias – the powerful influences of our current knowledge and beliefs on how we remember our pasts. We often edit or entirely rewrite our previous experiences – unknowingly and unconsciously – in light of what we now know or believe.

· Persistence – repeated recall of disturbing information or events that we would prefer to banish from our minds altogether: remembering what we cannot forget.

Which sin are you most guilty of? How can we address these?

Don’t fret, help is on the way. There are ways to “redeem your memory sins” by doing the following:

Imagination and Association – The best way to anchor an item into your memory is to think about it as an image, in association with something else that is fixed and known to you. It is easy as creating a mnemonic like Every Good Boy Deserves Fruit, to remember the notes on a musical staff.

Be Present – Stop Absent-Mindedness by being Present Minded. Lapses are Failures of Attention!

- Momentarily pause for thought
- Scan around when leaving
- Take time to plan and think ahead
- Think it through
- Write it down – Use a Mind Map diary
- Use reminder notes/props.

Conceptualise – Names are difficult to retrieve because they are isolated from conceptual knowledge. Knowing that your accountant's name is "Bill Collins" doesn't tell you anything meaningful about him. Elaborate on the name in a way that makes it meaningful: imagine a dollar bill being snatched from your accountant's pocket by a playful collie.

Consideration – Studies of college students showed that when asked to consider possible origins of an idea can, at least to some extent, override the influence of priming. These students plagiarized less frequently than those in the other group.

Open-ended – Leading questions or feedback from other people can create false memories of events that never happened. Always ask simple, open-ended questions, particularly with young children. Ask "What happened?" rather than "Where did you hurt yourself?"

Beware of Stereotypes – Appreciate that current knowledge, beliefs and feelings can influence our recollections of the past, and shape our impressions of people and objects in the present.

Acceptance – Attempts to avoid traumatic memories often backfire. Intrusive memories need to be acknowledged, confronted and worked through in order to set them to rest for the long term.

Buzan, in his book, “Age-Proof Your Brain,” mentions that the brain is a muscle. In order for it to stay sharp, we must regularly ‘exercise’ it. Try doing puzzles or a short memory game. Play Sudoku instead of the pre-installed Hearts or Solitare card game in your computer. You will notice that the more you keep your brain ‘fit’, it will be easier to absorb info and recall facts and details.

Another useful way to recall facts and info is the tool created by Tony Buzan called Mind Mapping. Just browse past articles about Mind Mapping in this blog to find out what it's all about.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Eric V

Eric Villarama, yes, the hubby of Donita Rose, just finished today his 2nd run of his Mind Mapping for the Marketing, Brand and Advertising team.

Nicole, our project manager, was there with Eric the whole day and I'm sure she'll have some nice reports and pictures to post soon.

I really enjoy Eric V's sessions. He doesn't rely on powerpoint slides--instead he interacts and makes you think.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

12th Mind Mapping: Creative Thinking for Leaders and Managers

"Unleash the Creativity and Genius in You!"

"Save P1,000 when you sign up before August 8, 2008 for our Early Bird rate!"

Unleash your mind's potential and the genius in you! Take advantage of another opportunity to learn the revolutionary thinking tool - Mind Maps through our 12th Mind Mapping: Creative Thinking for Leaders and Managerson August 28-29, 2008 at the Edsa Shangri-La Manila.

Our brain is a sleeping giant. Many experts believe that we use as little as 1% of our brain, spending very little time on:

  • creative thinking applied to different disciplines
  • concentration as a function of time
  • memory performance during and after the assimilation of information
  • the art of communication for memory
  • the effect of our modes of thought on habit patterns and change.

Statistics show that, on average, executives spend:

  • 30% of their time reading and sorting through information
  • 20% of their time solving problems and thinking creatively
  • 20% of their time communicating

What if YOU are given the operations manual of the brain to unleash your brain's full potential and creative genius?

Invest in your intellectual capital and see how it will change and affect your organization!

Don't miss out on this must-attend training! Whether you're new about Mind Mapping or are already using this amazing brain tool, Mind Mapping will help you:

  • Absorb various trainings and learnings better!
  • Brainstorm better and faster through the Bloom™ techniques and generate 10x more creative ideas.
  • Plan and set goals, write proposals and letters 4x faster
  • Multi-task and set priorities with ease
  • Prepare better for presentations, meetings and briefings with confidence and less stress - and much more!

Here are rave reviews with our participants:

"Learning to do mind maps is a big help in the development of an individual. Definitely a worthy investment!" - Ms. Lucille P. Tolentino, Rustan marketing Specialists, Inc.

"This exceeds my expectations. I thought I won't have fun, but I did! - Grace Diamante, Shell Philippines Exploration

"Highly interactive! Overall, a great learning experience applicable to almost any organizational structure or task!" - Ms. Marie Grace B. Marci, BrandLab Inc.

"The best seminar I have ever attend in years!!!" - Mr. Danilo A. Aparis, Alarm Security & Investigation Services, Inc.

"Great seminar!" - Maria Luisa Reyes Yap, Lafarge Cememnt Services Philippines

Join companies such as Globe Telecom, Microsoft, Unilab, Leo Burnett, PLDT, and Ace Saatchi and Saatchi, who have previously attended our Mind Mapping workshops.

This workshop is designed by Tony Buzan - the world's leading expert on the brain, the Creative Intelligence Guru and author of over 90 books on creative thinking. He is also the founder of the Mind Maps, the thinking tool used by over 250 million people. Currently, he holds the world's highest creativity IQ.

Facilitated by Bernard Marquez, a Buzan-Licensed Instructor, who trained in Singapore, this is a workshop designed to help you unleash your brain's full potential by teaching you how to maximize both parts of your brain.

Be part of the many managers and executives in discovering how to create better plans, strategies, proposals, and presentations. With the Mind Mapping tools you will see how it can help you conceptualize new product and business ideas.

We encourage you to scroll down below and read up on how Mind Mapping has helped individuals and companies - even cities!

Thanks and God bless!

Nicole Therese R. Guerzon
Project Manager - 11th Mind Mapping: Creative Thinking for Leaders and Managers
Salt and Light Ventures, Inc.

Save P1,000 when you register before August 8, 2008 for our Early Bird Rate! Just scroll down the invitation below and simply email back reservation form at or Or, you may print out the reservation form and fax it at 8132745.

Mind Mapping Seminar Details

6 Reasons Why You Should Sign Up Now:

1. Learn Mind Mapping - a powerful graphic technique which provides a universal key to unlock the potential of the brain. It harnesses the full range of cortical skills - word, image, number, logic, rhythm, color and spatial awareness - in a single, uniquely powerful manner.

2. Discover how to find solutions and what is restricting you when brainstorming.

3. Capture the most important "correct thoughts/keywords".

4. Unpack the meaning of "associations between ideas" and the importance of color and imagery.

5. Participate in a hands-on Mind Mapping workshop about real-life organizational/corporate issues.

6. Find out how to optimize your learning and absorption of information,
especially for trainings and briefings.

Workshop Overview

The Mind Mapping: Creative Thinking for Leaders and Managers Workshop™ is a training program that will help unleash your creativity. By teaching you how to MindMap, you will discover how to use your whole brain (right and left) to create original ideas and thoughts.

As Tony Buzan explains in his Bestselling book Mind Maps at Work, "Mind Maps can help you at work in an infinite number of ways, because like you, Mind Maps are workers. When Mind Maps are at work, they work hard; enabling you to think radiantly and unleash your own incredible potential-they will become your allies: they will be there to support you in any working situation."

Workshop Design

The name workshop says it all. While our two-day workshop is led by an engaging Buzan Center Philippines Facilitator, you'll soon realize this is not just your ordinary sit-and-soak event. You can be assured that it will be an enlightening and fun program that you've ever participated in.

Who Should Attend

  • Leaders, managers, supervisors, directors, executives, and teams who give importance to organizational development and completion of goals and finding solutions
  • Trainers and HR professions who are responsible for implementing innovation, creativity and leadership programs within their organizations.

Action Planning

Nothing is more important than transferring what you learn in the classroom back to your work environment. That is why we purposely schedule time during the workshop for you to create your own Mind Maps and apply it to your projects at work or at home. Our Facilitator will walk you through critical steps so that you will be able to take advantage of the full potential of this wonderful tool.

More Rave Reviews about Mind Mapping and the Workshop:

"Very exciting, challenging, enlightening! Mind Mapping is definitely a 'thinking out of the box' tool that can be used individually and corporately." - Ms. Vilma P. Salvio, Philippine Bible Society
"Mind Mapping itself is an effective tool to simplify complex ideas/concepts. Creating my own mind maps was fun & relaxing - great timing for us busy people to take a time-off from our work and enjoy what we're doing." - Gertrude Marie A. Martinez, MERALCO

"It's a creative way of thinking for different situations - life planning, strategic planning, meetings, and designing programs!" - Lea M. Dublado, Petron Corporation

"Mind Mapping is helpful in achieving results!" - Michael Miranda, BPI

"I'll be able to use mind mapping for brainstorming and discussions!" - Janet Ong, LBC Express, Inc.

"I will share my learnings with my co-workers and apply the principles in coaching and mentoring." - Jocelyn Villacorta, ACE Saatchi & Saatchi Advertising Inc.

What if you had the ability to think and generate ideas four-times faster than before?

About the Course Designer-
Tony Buzan: Holder of the World's Highest Creativity IQ

Tony Buzan is the creator of the Mind Mapping thinking technique
. Mind Maps, a learning technique described as 'The Swiss Army Knife of the Brain,' is used by over 250 million people worldwide including officials and staff in the Singaporean Government and School System and executives in Oracle, Microsoft, Con Edison and Boeing.

Tony Buzan is also the co-founder of the Mind Sports Olympiad and originator of the Mental Literacy concept.
Most of his teaching generally divides up into general awareness of the extensive capabilities and capacities of the brain and its functions, memory skills, reading skills, mind map note-taking, creativity, and how brain functions can be improved over time.

To date, Tony Buzan has written over 90 books
and many best sellers including Mind Maps at Work: How to Be the Best at Your Job and Still Have Time to Play, The Power of Creative Intelligence, The Brainsmart Leader, and The Mind Map Book: How to Use Radiant Thinking to Maximize Your Brain's Untapped Potential.

Mind Maps -

create "new knowledge"

"...a new generation of Mind Mapping software can also be used as a digital "blank slate" to help connect and synthesize ideas and data - and ultimately create new knowledge."

- Bill Gates, Founder of Microsoft

help organize your materials for speeches

"If I am concerned about having too much or what to cover in a speech, I organize it by Mind Mapping the material."

Ken Blanchard - Author, One Minute Manager

inspire innovation

'Mind Maps have permeated Oracle. They are part of a drive for greater innovation within the company. Mind Maps have enabled us to improve our effectiveness. - Alan Matcham, Director of Oracle

Imagine the transformation it could do for your career, business, and life! Harness the power of creativity and the ability of conceptualizing innovative ideas for your organization.

Mind Mapping: Creative Thinking for Leaders and Managers™ is a workshop designed to help you unleash your brain's full potential.

Training Investment for the 12th Mind Maping: Creative Thinking for Leaders and Managers
Early Bird Rate is only P11,977 + 12% VAT when you sign up before August 8, 2008. Save P1,000!

Regular rate

is only P12,977 + 12% Vat

Inclusive of:

* Workshop attendance

* Workbook

* Certificate of completion

* Lunch and 2 snacks per day

Sign up now!

*Group discounts :

3 delegates - Less P 300 per delegate on top of Regular Rate

4 delegates - Less P 400 per delegate on top of Regular Rate

5 delegates - Less P 500 per delegate on top of Regular Rate

6 delegates - Less P 600 per delegate on top of Regular Rate

7 delegates - Less P 700 per delegate on top of Regular Rate

8 delegates - Less P 800 per delegate on top of Regular Rate

9 delegates - Less P 900 per delegate on top of Regular Rate

10 delegates - Less P 1,000 per delegate on top of Regular Rate

To reserve seat(s) for your delegates, please fill up the form below and return it to this address (or email it to if this has been forwarded to you)

Look! 4 Easy Ways to Reserve:

[ ] Fill out the form below and Email us at or

[ ] Fax this form to 813-2745 or 886-4841

[ ]Call) 8132732/03; 8302191 ask for Nicole, Fina or Juliet

[ ] Send form together with your company check to Salt and Light Ventures, Inc., 4/F Majalco Bldg., 104 Benavidez St., Makati City. You may also deposit payment to Salt & Light Ventures, Inc. BPI Current Account # 3211-0837-85, Corinthian Plaza, Paseo de Roxas, Makati branch. Please remember to write the name(s) of the delegate(s) on the deposit slip.


August 28 and 29 2008, Edsa Shangri-La, 9:00AM - 5:00PM
Yes! Please reserve ____ seat(s) for the following participants: (Please change if different)













































* For more than 3 pax, kindly add more details. Thank you.
* Mobile number is optional, but important in case we need to inform delegates of urgent, last minute changes for emergencies (ie. weather, speaker changes, etc).

[ ] By Cheque. I will send check payment to your office on ______________________________.
[ ] By Pick-up. Please pick-up our check on ______________________________ (time/date).
Prepare check payable to Salt and Light Ventures, Inc.
[ ] By Bank Deposit. Kindly remit your payment to the ff. bank details:
Company Name: Salt and Light Ventures, Inc.
TIN #: 212-844-982-000-VAT
Account #: BPI CA # 3211-0837-85, Makati branch
For zero-rated or VAT-exempt companies, please include your Certificate of Exemption. Provide Form 2307 or Certificate of Tax Withheld if payment done with tax withheld. Please withhold only 2% as we are classified as suppliers or contractors of services.

1. No cancellations seven days before the seminar. Seminar participation may be transferred to another person in the same company.
2. This reservation form, when completed, may also serve as your billing invoice.
3. All seminar fees must be prepaid.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Mind Mapping... gyud!

Whew! I just came back from two fun-filled Cebu Mind Mapping runs. This post is a bit overdue, but better late than never! We had our Mind Mapping: Creative Thinking for Leaders and Managers last May 22 and 23 with Cebu Holdings at the lovely Laguna Garden Cafe (which was just a 5-7 minute walk from the hotel we stayed). At the same time, we also held our Mind Mapping for Kids on May 23 and 24 at the Golden ABC training room.

May 21- Off to Cebu
After hauling what seemed like a ton of materials and luggages from the airport to the hotel, Bernard, Ivy, and I settled in the Marriott Hotel in Mactan, Cebu to reenergize for the following day's Mind Mapping session.

May 22- Mind Mapping: Creative Thinking for Leaders and Managers - 1st day with Cebu Holdings

The venue where we held our Mind Mapping run for Cebu Holdings is just at the back of our hotel. We could have just walked, however with the materials we were bringing to the venue, we definitely needed transportation. The Mind Mapping workshop apparently was a not-to-be-missed workshop, that was why after bringing a suitcase-full of Mind Mapping materials, I had to run back to the hotel to grab additional items for the additional participants of Cebu Holdings. We had 23 participants, total.

* * * * * * * *
An "Are you ok?" experience
Upon grabbing the additional items from the hotel, namely, 15 juggling balls (which weighed 5kg), 20 sketchbooks, and a large luggage, I dragged myself to the elevator, but syempre, kailangan 'poise' pa rin yung paglalakad. I am in a semi-business attire, after all. Someone in the hallway asked me if I was checking out. I whizzed past him with an loud, "Nope, not today!" I didn't have time to call for a bellboy, because I was pressed for time. When the elevator reached the ground floor and that audible 'ding' sounded, I was face-to-face with a, surprise, surprise... a bellboy. He looked at my 'dilemma', smiled and asked, "Hi Ma'm! Do you need assistance?" I looked at him and smiled, but deep down, I was exclaiming, "Obvious ba?!"

I handed him the bags, and since I had this facade of the bags being light, he wasn't prepared with the weight. He literally... and I mean LITERALLY almost kissed the floor. I gasped an "Whoa! Are you ok?" The bellboy replied, "Ma'm, kabug-at ma'n to. Anong laman nito?"

* * * * * * * *

The President of Cebu Holdings, Francis O. Monera, was present during the Mind Mapping workshop and said some short welcome remarks. Cecil Urbina, in charge of the trainings for Cebu Holdings (and whose sister-in-law happens to own Laguna Garden Cafe) introduced Bernard Marquez as the facilitator for Mind Mapping: Creative Thinking for Leaders and Managers. We started the seminar just before 9am.

Sometime before lunch, I did an ocular at the Golden ABC training room to set up and prepare the materials for the MMKids seminar the following day.
One of the highlights of this day was when the participants did the paperclip exercise. All of them had a lot of fun laughing and giggling at the 'creative' ways a paperclip can be used. They also enjoyed the juggling, as one of the participants commented, "This is good for daily exercise."

May 23- Mind Mapping: Creative Thinking for Leaders and Managers - 2nd day with Cebu Holdings and Mind Mapping for Kids - 1st day

Yes, you've read it right. We held the 2nd day for MMCTLM on May 24 and at the same time, we also held our first MMKids in Cebu. At 730am, after bringing Bernard to Laguna Garden Cafe, I accompanied Ivy to Golden ABC (thankfully, we had transportation, provided by Golden ABC) to take us to their office. After 30 mins of setting up, the kids started coming in, accompanied by their parents, who helped them to their seats (and paid for their workshop fees). The early bird award goes to Charles and Kyle Liu, who arrived a bit past 8am. ^_^ We had 22 kids total - ages ranging from 7 years to 18 years. Lovely, bright kids they all are. I couldn't help but smile when I hear them speak English, then insert their Cebuano expressions in the end. For example, "Don't do that, lagi! or "It's Mind Mapping, bitaw."

I would like to note here that the kids learned juggling really fast. I had to buy additional prizes for those who were able to juggle. I can't forget Gio - who wanted to win 1 additional prize, so that he could give one to his sister, Patricia (who was also attending the MMKids workshop). Such a thoughtful kid.

Around 330pm, we rushed back to Laguna Garden Cafe to see how Bernard was doing with the adults. He just finished raffling off 5 i-Mind Mapping installers to the participants.

May 24 - Mind Mapping for Kids - 2nd day and back to Manila

Last day for our Mind Mapping for Kids workshop. Ivy enlisted the help of Bernard, because we separated the kids from the teenagers. Bernard handled 6 kids, while Ivy handled 16 teenagers - separate classrooms, of course.

After our Mind Mapping for Kids workshop, we gave our congratulations and the certificates to the kids. We chatted a bit with Alice and Benjie Liu - who helped us bring the Mind Mapping for Kids workshop to Cebu. God-willing, we will definitely see more Mind Mapping sessions held in Cebu in the future.

My dream is that Mind Mapping will be a common jargon in the Philippines and this amazing brain tool will be available to everyone.

All my bags are packed, I'm ready to go - waiting at the airport

It's 630pm and I'm at the Mactan airport waiting for my flight. It has been raining non-stop since 330pm and it doesn't look that it's letting up soon. I'm also waiting for 2 of the facilitators to finish their 30-minute massage - which they badly need after a job well-done. By the way, our flight was delayed for another 25 minutes. Haaay. Somehow, I'm glad that I was able to eat something at the hotel or else I'll be really hungry right now. Right now, I'm checking my email - offline mode, while propping my legs up on my big "Guji" hand-carry. Hehehe. I could feel the eyes of those passing by - as if they've never seen a person like me... a 26-year old, typing away on her laptop. Maybe it's an unusual sight in the Mactan airport. I really didn't bother anymore, since I chose at that exact moment to be oblivious to my surroundings and reflect on my experience in Cebu.

I take deep breath, lie back on the cold airport bench, close my eyes for a moment and try to recall what my eyes have hungrily took in from the time I've stepped off the plane.

The best of all these experiences was being exposed to a different culture. I quietly observed the boisterous nature of the Cebuanos - always ready to share a good laugh, as well as their friendliness. I will never forget their hospitality during my stay there - most especially our 2 drivers - Ching and Nilo, the two people who have assisted me with my logistics - Grace and Leslie, and this nice, soft-spoken Australian (or American foreigner) in his late fifties, who was wheelchair, whom Bernard and I assisted with his hotel keycard so he can enter his room. I never got his name, but I hope he'll be all right.

If ever you visit Cebu, try their seafood. I absolutely loved it. I didn't have time to dine at Dimsum Break - a restaurant that a friend of mine said is a must-visit, because the Chinese food is really good.

The intercom jolted me from my reverie; the plane is ready to accept passengers. I check my time. It's 8:30pm and thankfully, it has stopped raining. As I settled on my plane seat (I take the window seat of course - Ivy and Bernard are out cold), I look out my window and see the clear nightscape of Mactan - my eyes tracing the tiny dots of light that frame the buildings and the roads... before it was covered by clouds.