I sometimes hear people say, “Well, scratch that off my bucket list.”
From what I understand a “bucket list” is a list of those things one has not done before, but wants to do before dying.
I’ve wondered, what happens when your bucket is empty? Do you just collapse where you are and a “ready for pick-up” alert goes out via your iPhone to your funeral director of choice? Or, how do you pick something to go on your list; what’re the criteria you use? If you’ve done something that you’ve enjoyed, can you go back and do it again? Or is that a violation of bucket list rules (and who makes those rules) prohibiting you from any further selections?
I doubt that many who talk about their bucket list actually have a list.
Drilling down further, why do some link a desire to do things that will accelerate the arrival of their death? Is a bucket list just activity driven? Or, should a list be developed based on a life lesson or meaningful experience that enhances one’s life?
In my mind, life is to be lived to the fullest. Life should not be lived or determined by a list. Although there are some of you out there (and you know who you are) that are driven by lists.
If you have a need for a list, why not create and maintain a “Life List?” That’s how my wife and I manage our lives. We have never said, “What’s on our list that we need to do before we die?” Rather our words are, “This looks like it will be fun or meaningful. Let’s put it on the list and do it!”
Your “life list” should help you establish and maintain clarity and purpose to do those things that create experiences which enhance your appreciation of all that life offers, and to motivate you to live a longer and more fulfilled life. Every day gives you that opportunity. It doesn’t always have to be a trip or an event. It could be something as simple as watching the sun come up!
In my opinion, you create your life list by first creating the right mindset in that 7″ space between your ears. This mindset is often referred to as a growth mindset, i.e., what can I learn or do to be better, versus a mindset that rewards activity which gets you closer to your demise.
None of us know when our lives will end. Your life list should guide you to live as full of a life as possible so that when the curtain comes down after the last act, you can leave knowing that you left a trail of experiences which made your life (and probably your family’s and all those around you) better and more valuable.