Positive Psychology in practice

What is a Bucket list?

A bucket list is a term for the list of things you want to do / experience before you die or “kick the bucket”. 😀

Bucket list

As you probably already know, a bucket list is a term for the list of things you want to do / experience before you die or “kick the bucket”. 😀

When I first heard about this concept, I immediately liked it. Unfortunately, most people only think about it when they get seriously ill and then complain eh, if only I had gone to Rome  at least one more time (or some other nice place) while I still could, eh if only I had learned to play the guitar, eh if only I had showed someone that one song I once wrote …

Dying people most often regret all that they missed, what they did not have as an experience or pleasure or desire because obligations and responsibilities have always been at the forefront. They also regret the relationships in which they did not invest enough and the fact that they did not tell anyone how much they cared. And most of all, they regretted that they did not live their lives, that they did not risk enough but followed the line of least resistance and somehow always chose a safer path, comfortable, but without a lot of soul and spreading your wings, a path marked by other people’s expectations.

How do we know that? Well, among other things, because that is also being researched. Perhaps the most famous author on the subject is Bronnie Ware who has worked in palliative care for years and has had the opportunity to talk to many dying people. Somehow then the masks fall off and people are more honest and see things more clearly than ever before.

Some say that thinking about the end of life depresses them. While it’s not that I can’t wait for that moment of course, thinking about mortality really motivates me. Because life is finite and we do not have eternity to realize ourselves as human beings. Thinking about the end encourages me to really take life into my own hands and create what I want.

So I’ve had my bucket list for a very long time. It is full of various things and experiences dear to me – for example, to see tulip fields in the Netherlands, to go to a Coldplay concert, to travel through Provence, to learn Spanish, to give a TED talk, to walk a famous trail in Croatia, to publish a book, to go to the Camino … some I have already fulfilled, some are still waiting. But what I try to do is cross out at least something from that list every year, and I always put some of it in the Plan for my best year (some of you are already familiar with my workshop where we set personal goals at the beginning of the year). And the feeling is priceless, not only because you’ve experienced something wonderful, but because you know that if you focus your attention and effort things really happen. In fact, it would be more accurate to say that  you made them happen. And to have that feeling and knowledge is truly powerful and essential to life.

So if you haven’t already, write your bucket list too. What would you like to experience in life that you haven’t yet? Maybe parachute jumping, managing to bake that special cake as well as your mom, daring to sing in front of others at karaoke, travel to Paris, swim with dolphins … It doesn’t matter what it is, or how big or small it is, and especially it does not matter what others think about it. All that matters is that it means something to you.

Try it, I’m sure that the act of writing will already bring a smile to your face, and imagine it coming true… send me a picture. 🙂