30 July 2011

A Bucket List

One giant leap for Matt! (one small step for mankind) by Muddy Funkster
No, I don't want to skydive. Sorry.

I must have heard the term “bucket list” at least four times in one day. It’s the title of an Oscar award winning movie, but more than that is a popular concept among positive-thinking, life-changing, entrepreneurship-type blogs and podcasts. It’s the idea that you should make up a list of a hundred, fifty, or even a dozen things that you want to do before you kick the proverbial bucket. Basically you ask yourself, “If I was lying on my deathbed right now, what would I regret not doing?”

Setting down your lifetime goals is such an important task, I think it would be hard to overstate it. Not that you have to map out exactly what you’ll be doing in February 2028, but not even setting a few major goals on paper is like going out on a grand adventure without so much as a compass. You might not need a road map complete with little symbols for every rest stop, but a list of “big rocks” gives you landmarks to help you keep track along the way, so that you don’t get to the end of a year—God forbid, the end of your life—and say, “Gosh, I didn’t really do much that was worthwhile and life-changing.”

For me this is a very big list. I’ve yet to put in down in writing, though; at the moment it’s just a haphazard, unformed idea of uninitiated opportunities and vague dreams. I have a feeling that my list (when I actually write it) will be less a series of concrete goals and more a collection of abstract experiences—serving God, building solid relationships, a lifestyle of continual learning, fulfilling work, helping others, creating something beautiful, etcetera. However, here are some solid goals I’ve come up with so far:
  • Living in England (yes, spending 2 whole months at a Bible school would count, in my opinion)
  • Making at least one friend in every country in Europe (yes, I know that there are 52)
  • Publishing a book (fiction or nonfiction, and if through self-publishing I’d like to sell several thousand copies)
  • Falling in love (if that’s God’s will)
  • Discover my passion and reason for living (no biggie, right?)
  • Work for myself (and do more than survive)
That’s it for now. What about you? Do you have some half-formed ideas, are you completely clueless, or are you ahead of the game and have your list all written out already? I challenge you bloggers to put some time, spiritual energy, and serious thought into your own bucket list, then post it on your own blog. Then you can link to your post in the comment section of this post. I’d love to see what some of you want to accomplish.

And remember, it’s never too late to start! In 1966 Lou Holtz was just an unemployed, penniless assistant-coach. He read the book The Magic of Thinking Big and then sat down to write out a list of 107 things he wanted to do before he died. Years later he has retired from a phenomenal football coaching career (2x coach of the year), and he's accomplished at least 85 of those goals so far.

I can’t wait to see what you come up with!



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