The Bucket List
As an organized person myself, I love making lists. I enjoy making lists because each time I complete something, I get to physically cross it off and move on to the next item which leaves me feeling a lasting sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. Making a bucket list is a great way to ensure that you take the adventures that you want in life while giving yourself a sense of accomplishment along the way.
A few years ago, I started my own bucket list. I decided that I wanted to start taking more risks, see more places and start saying yes to things that I otherwise would have declined to take part in. Now, I choose to keep my bucket list rather private because there are things on my list that have sentimental value to me and I like to have something that is uniquely private to me. In my eyes, that’s what makes creating a bucket list so valuable. You can have goals and aspirations on your list that only you know exist, yet you can also have less serious objectives listed such as places you want to visit and events that you want to attend rounding out your list. It’s your list, make it how you want and make it what you want. As I said, I like to keep my list rather private, however, I am willing to share with you a story of a time that I checked off an item on my bucket list in an effort to stimulate your mind and convince you to put pen on paper and start your own list.
Ever since I can remember, I have had a fear of deep water. I’m not sure what it was, the ominous deep blue water, not being able to see what was lingering beneath the surface or maybe it was the flashbacks to the first time I had watched the summer classic “Jaws”, nevertheless, deep water had always been a fear of mine. Once I created my bucket list, I knew that I wanted to overcome a fear and so swimming in deep water made it to the top of my list. A few summers ago, my friends and I had been enjoying a day on the lake tooling around in a boat when we found ourselves far from shore. I thought that this would be as good of an opportunity as any to overcome my fear of deep water and so I asked if we could stop to swim. My friends loved the idea and so we dropped anchor and I anxiously watched them leap into the water without hesitation. Now, considering that this stop was my idea, I had no choice but to dive in and that is exactly what I did. I recall nervously pacing the length of the boat before finally getting the courage to prepare my jump into the waters of uncertainty. I will never forget the feeling of my toes departing from the scorching leather seat of the boat. I was overcome with a sensation of both fear and liberation. I had reached the point of no return. No matter how badly I wanted to turn back, I was in too deep, literally. When I hit the water and quickly bobbed back to the surface I took a great breath of air and located both the boat and my friends. At that point I was able to relax and realize that I had just taken a leap off of not only the boat but my comfort zone. I enjoyed the rest of that swim as I reflected upon the fact that I had just checked off an item on my bucket list. My friends didn’t know it, but I had just overcome one of my greatest fears.
Ever since I took this leap of faith, I have become a much more adventurous person. I have ridden rollercoasters that I never would have even entertained the though of. I have hiked places that I never would have dreamed of and my entire mentality changed all because I set out to overcome a fear by writing it down on my bucket list.
Now, I am not suggesting that by simply creating a bucket list that your entire mentality will change, but it very well could. The key to creating a good bucket list is identifying what you want to get out of it. Do you want to take more chances and overcome fears or do you want to visit all 50 US states? Whatever you set out to do, do it with an open mind and with the knowledge that you’re going to have to be flexible and adjust your list to the changes that life throws your way.
Provided is a list of questions that you should ask yourself before getting your list started:
- Where do you want to go and what do you want to see?
- What do you want to gain out of this list? (Experiences, mentality change, etc)
- What risks are you willing to take?
- Who do you want to take with you on your journey?
- How are you going to do it? (Develop a plan and get to work)