It’s been years since Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman took us on a wild ride as they checked things off their bucket list, but it seems to be a really big thing to do these days. There are a myriad of sites and books with list of things to do before you die, often accompanied by fabulous photographs. Some definitely swoon-worthy.
Many people I know have them, too. They’re massive lists filled with exotic places they want to go and magnificent things they want to do. I marvel. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for doing and dreaming big, but what if they don’t manage to check some things off their list? Will they be disappointed? It makes me a bit sad to think that they are possibly setting themselves up for disappointment. I also find that sometimes there’s an air of competitiveness about them – my list is bigger, more daring, more challenging, than yours. That sounds like a contradiction, to me. It’s your list. Whatever is on it makes it the best list, for you.
I think having goals is important. Absolutely. Without goals, we don’t move forward in our lives. But a big rule for successful goal setting is that it has to be desirable. It has to be something you really want. I’m not saying climbing Mt Everest isn’t desirable. Just not for me. Is it for you? If not you’re, setting yourself up for failure. It’s the sense of accomplishment that keeps us looking forward to tackling the next thing on our list. It just feels so good when you check something off your list – any list.
That sense of achievement, though, can be found in the little things, too. I’m an advocate of a bucket list full of, or at least liberally sprinkled with, simple pleasures, the little things in life that can make you smile.
- Learn to make chocolate eclairs
- Grow some lavender
- Go to a farmer’s market in spring
- Buy yourself some flowers in the middle of winter
- Use your good china for dinner on a weeknight
The wonderful thing about a bucket list is the joy you get in doing something out of the ordinary. Not necessarily extraordinary. It can be just a teensy bit out of the ordinary.
So, why wait on getting to the BIG stuff? Why not experience a little bit of that joy the in the everyday? Life’s busy. It’s so easy to just live the routine day in and day out. Shake things up a bit and toss in a few sprinkles or bright, shiny objects. I’m not suggesting you tear up your big bucket list. Just add some things to it that you can enjoy and check off sooner rather than later. Put some flowers in that bucket.
What’s on your bucket list? Will you add some simple delights? Share your story in the comments below.