I wrote a previous post about creating my bucket list. You can tell by the title that this was very self orientated. It was basically just a list the things that I wanted to achieve.
It is high time that I updated my bucket list but I don’t want to just repeat this process with a new list. Instead I thought I would write a post about how I go about creating the list. Then I can just update my list on an ongoing basis and use this post as a reference.
As this blog is meant to be read by other people I thought it best to try and start aiming the content at you, my little group of followers. Just getting my ideas down into words is of great benefit to me. The important change here is that I am writing this post aimed at someone other than myself.
So here are my tips on creating a bucket list. Feel free to join in the fun and create your own list…
Why Create A Bucket List?
The first thing is to get your head around is why you need the list in the first place. Just spend a few seconds thinking of something you have always dreamed of doing at some stage in your life. It is more than likely that something jumped straight into your mind:
- I wish I could do…
- I would love to go to…
- I must see…
- I have to achieve…
Everyone has some dreams, goals or desires that have been left unfulfilled. There can be many reasons for this but the biggest culprit must be thinking you will get around to that at some time in the future. That is all well and good but as time flies by are any of these dreams getting any closer? The earlier you start progressing towards your goals the more chance you have of attaining them, no matter how big they may seem now.
You have to accept that we are all mortal. Life is short and it can pass you by at an alarming rate. Live in the present, take advantage of opportunities right now and don’t assume that there is always going to be tomorrow. What would happen if you were suddenly diagnosed with some illness and only given a limited amount of time to live? Would you regret not chasing your dreams?
Tips For Creating Your List
Here are a few tips to help you get started creating your list. I have chucked in a few prompts that I hope will help trigger some idea:
- Start writing ideas down – The best way to get started is to just grab a pen and paper (or open a text editor if you prefer) and get started. There are bound to be quite a few obvious items that just pop straight into your head. Think of places you fell you have to visit at some time in your life, events you want to watch or people you would like to see. You might want to Visit the Colloseum in Rome, Watch a world cup match or See Lady GaGa perform. Write all of the items down as they enter your head. You can always go back and review them afterwards.
- Let your mind wander – To really get into the right mindset you need to let your mind wander whichever direction it wants. This is a great way to get some of the more random ideas. Maybe you want to Sample every single item from the menu of your favourite Indian take-away. This would probably be done over a period of time… Go wild, just remember to write any ideas down, no matter how outrageous.
- Create some categories – If you find all of your items are based around travel, for example, it might be an idea to create some categories. This should help give you a bit of variation if you focus on each category in turn. Here’s a few categories, with examples, to help give you an idea of the possibilities:
- Visit the Great Pyramids
- Visit the Eiffel Tower
- Start your own business
- Find a job that makes you happy
- Walk the South West Coast Path
- Cycle from Lands End to John O’ Groats
- Try White Water Rafting
- Bungy Jump
- Take up Photography
- Try your hand at Ballroom Dancing
- Become debt free
- Own your own home
- Make it personal – Some items will probably crop up that you feel like you must have on your list. Things like Walk on the Great Wall of China are a popular item. Just because other people tell you that is something you must do doesn’t necessarily mean it should go on your list. Maybe you don’t like the idea of travelling that sort of distance. Be truthful to yourself. Do you really want to do it, or go there? If not then don’t bother adding it to your list. At least that way the list isn’t cluttered with a lot of items that you are never going to be interested in.
- Vary the difficulty – There must be some things on the list that you could just look at and think ‘I could start that today!’. It is all too easy to form the list of just the big ticket items. For example you may want to Become a millionaire, but this is not going to happen overnight. Of course this can stay on the list if you want but you should also include some much simpler items like Go on a road trip. This will give you the feeling of being able to achieve things on the list. If they are all such lofty goals they may feel out of reach and so there is a tendency to give up.
- Make it public – To help you start knocking things off the list then make the list public. This might give you the added incentive required to tackle some of the bigger items. Once you have made your intentions public there is a subconscious fear of failing in the eyes of your peers. There is also the possibility that they may even offer you some help with something off the list…
- Update the list regularly – One thing to bear in mind is that things change so the list will need to be updated at regular intervals to keep it relevant to your current situation. This could be yearly, every 6 months or even more frequently if required. The main thing is that you bring the list to your attention at least once a year otherwise it will probably get forgotten about. Left long enough the items on the list may not even be relevant any more and once this happens the whole list is likely to be ignored.
One of the items on my list was to see a grizzly bear fishing for salmon. I recently crossed this one off the list, hence the picture at the top of this post which I took myself. Are you going to start your own list? Have you already got a list?
Here is a couple of links to other lists that helped inspire me. Give them a quick look, you might get some ideas:
Please let me know what you feel about this post in the comments below.
Image: Pete O’Shea