3a5 - The three phases of MOCs
Maps of Content (MOCs) are one of the ultimate thinking tools. They have three basic, overlapping phases.
- Assembling phase
- Assemble, collect, gather, curate, incubate
- Put related stuff on a new digital workbench.
- Imagine having a warehouse of limitless workbenches, and for each workbench you curate the notes placed on it.
- Whenever you feel you need to get a handle on a bunch of notes on
Subject XYZ, just throw them all onto a new workbench—i.e. place their links into a new MOC note titled
Subject XYZ MOC. Now it’s easier to begin.
- Colliding phase
- Collide, develop, rearrange sharpen, cluster, chart, categorize, combine, cut up, cast aside, and otherwise craft
- Have your ideas battle for relational positioning. This is the most joyous and valuable stage.
- Once you have all your ideas in one MOC, use it like a crucible where ideas can battle it out for positioning, forcing you to grind them to their fundamental essence—thinking of their proximal importance to each other and building stronger connective tissue between them.
- Great work is accomplished during in this conceptual battle royale. The product of this work is rarely one without satisfaction.
- Unifying phase
- Navigate, reference, use, enjoy and converge with the whole
- Enjoy the spatial constellation you created.
- It’s most likely meaningful to you. Use it for different purposes: for final products (content creation), as a reference point in the future, as a navigational hub, or for the inherent joy the ideas provide.
- As you finish work on an area of interest, the MOC remains as a renewable summation of thought for the future you.
- An MOC is your easy access point back into the topic—whether that’s tomorrow or in ten years.
In this way, the 3-phase arc of an MOC mimics the 3-act story structure: ==Setup, confrontation, and resolution.==