A bucket list is a list of things that you want to do before you die. I once made bucket lists of all kinds. Travel bucket lists. Career bucket lists. Before I turn 30 lists. And then, after I came down with Lyme Disease, I realized that most of the things on my lists (especially the “before I turn 30” one) aren’t going to happen.
Not like you shouldn’t have ideas of what to do or have lists of things to see. I mean, Pinterest in an of itself is basically a list. Of course, I think everyone should have a good idea of what they want in their life. But limiting limiting your life to a “bucket list” is a bad idea in my opinion.
Why I Don’t Make Bucket Lists:
You might end up holding out. Bucket list items will be your priority, and you might end up holding out for them instead of taking awesome opportunities. Great opportunities come around way more than once in a lifetime, like cheap tickets to Iceland or a chance to go camping with friends. You might be missing out on great experiences just to check something else off the list.
The term “bucket list” implies an ending. We all seem to think that ending is far off. You might end up putting a trip or a ride in a hot air balloon off because there’s “so much time”. Take it from me, there is NOT “so much time”. You never know when life will be stripped away from you, whether it’s the end of your life or the inability to partake in such things on your bucket list.
You don’t want regrets. Just like the above said, your life can stop at any moment (whether because of sickness, and accident, a disease, or death). Nothing would be worse than sitting on your sickbed or deathbed regretting all the things you didn’t have a chance to do on your bucket list. If you take opportunities as they come and, alternatively, plan for something you really want to do, you’ll be less likely to have regrets. But if I wrote something down and didn’t end up doing it, I would just feel sorry for myself. A good benefit from not being tied to a bucket list would be the ease in looking back to see how much you’ve accomplished and how those accomplishments have blessed you.
A bucket list is a wishlist, not a plan. A bucket list is more like a wishlist – a dream of what you want to do. But to make it reality, you must plan. Try having goals and objectives (aka: a plan) for every year instead of a bucket list. Write your goals (what you want to do) and objectives for each goal (how you plan to achieve the goal). A bucket list doesn’t help you. It just reminds you what you haven’t done.
The term “bucket list” is a negative way of thinking. Bucket list is derived from the expression “kicking the bucket” which means death. Instead of listing things that you hope to do before you die, you can turn it around and live positively. Planning for the next couple of years shows that you are living life rather than wishing things might happen before you kick the bucket. By writing a bucket list, you’re thinking in terms of what limits us as human beings – the days we have before we die. Instead, think about the endless possibilities we have in this life. Even if it’s a short life, there are endless possibilities.
Your life isn’t a checklist. Although to-do lists are sometimes helpful, it’s still disheartening when we don’t get everything on the to-do list done for the day. Just like your day should account for more than a list, so should your life, and even more so. Because it’s your LIFE. You might not have ever had “raise a family” or “buy a house” or even “eat healthier” on your bucket list, but that is definitely something to celebrate!
What should I do instead of bucket lists?
If you have an experience, a place you want to visit, or something you really want to accomplish, write out your goals and objectives to make that happen. Tacking a list to your mirror won’t help you, it will just remind you what you haven’t done yet, or what you’ve sacrificed to make those things happen. But goals and objectives are, by definition, blueprints to help you reach what you want to happen in your life.
Take it from me. I had to quit my job and couldn’t stay qualified with needed credentials in order to maybe do that job later, all because of my health. There were multiple other career paths that I tried and failed at because of my health. I have had to give up dreams of hiking the Pacific Crest Trail and having kids, all because of my health.
But now that I don’t have a bucket list to remind me of my so-called failures, I can enjoy life and the opportunities that it gives me.