I have recently returned from a quick trip to Melbourne, Australia and checked off a significant entry on my bucket list — attending the live theatre show, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. It was a mind-blowing, majestic and magical experience for this muggle! And it was made even more special by the fact that it did not seem possible in the past few pandemic lockdown years.
Even though I do state in my book, Bucket List Blueprint, that bucket lists can consist of low cost items that you can action in a local setting, the excitement of a bucket list often comes from adding magnificent, high-ticket and exotic entries onto your bucket list. Over the covid years, many items on a bucket list seemed almost impossible to check off.
However, there is almost no excuse not to dust off and freshen up your bucket list or write out a brand new one.
Not sure where to start?
Here are three simple steps to write 100 bucket list items…
1) Bucket List Step 1 — Make Time to Write
A key component to a bucket list is that it is written down. Writing it down makes it real, gets your thoughts in order and is a permanent record of your wants and dreams. You are more likely to achieve what you have written down. Do not skip this step. The writing part is very powerful.
What you need: something on which to write out your bucket list — a blank Word or other text document on your computer, or a large piece of paper or the back of an envelope. Anything will do. Flex your typing fingers or gather up some pens or colored markers.
Find something with which to time yourself for say at least 30 minutes — a watch, phone timer or a giant hourglass. Remove as many distractions as possible and devote your attention to write 100 bucket list items while the timer is on.
Top Tip: Avoid using the Internet, books or any other resources at this point to get bucket list ideas or spellings of place names etc. A bucket list is where you write down your most important dreams and goals to make you feel happier and more fulfilled. You are pinpointing what you really want in life and in a way excluding what you don’t want. Tap into that inner self that wants some fun and joy.
2) Bucket List Step 2 — Brainstorm
Now brainstorm, free write or mind map EVERYTHING you have always wanted to do, see, have, be, meet, etc. You KNOW in your heart what you really want.
Have fun with this creative exercise. Be silly, invoke your curiosity, think outside the box. There are no filters, no limits, no boundaries. Go wild, go crazy. Ask for the impossible. Dream big. Anything goes.
Write in short bullet points or long, descriptive paragraphs. Know that anything can be changed or deleted later. At this point that this does not have to look pretty.
Don’t worry if it seems more like a ‘goal’ than a bucket list item. The lines there are blurry, anyway. Don’t worry that you don’t have time or can’t afford it or allow in any other negative thoughts. Don’t worry if it seems too exotic, or conversely, too mundane. If it lights a fire in your belly, then it is perfect. Don’t think it is not possible. If someone else in the world has done it, it is possible.
Aim to write 100 bucket list items. This may seem like a lot but it is not really. The number of items on your bucket list doesn’t really matter, but it is nice to have something to aim for.
Top Tip: Write a ‘NOT bucket list’. For instance, I will never do a bungy jump. Put that over to one corner of the page. Writing a NOT bucket list will help you clear the way for what you really do want.
3) Bucket List Step 3 — Questions and Prompts
Whether or not you got to 100 items after Steps 1 and 2, questions and prompts help you to figure out more bucket list items plus focus on finding items more attuned to you.
Here is a selection of questions you can use as prompts so you can add to or refine your brand new, 100-item bucket list.
- If you won a huge lottery, what would you do first?
- If fear were not part of the equation, what would you do?
- If you were given three wishes, what would you wish for?
- What ‘toy’ or luxury item would you like to own or have, even for a day?
- What would be your biggest regret on your deathbed?
- What was your childhood dream to do, see, create?
- What would be a perfect day for you?
Top Tip: Grab a copy of Bucket List Blueprint for even more questions and prompts to write 100 bucket list items.
Write to Action
You just completed an exercise to write 100 bucket list items that make you smile, make your toes tingle and that make you want to jump out of bed in the morning! All you did was complete three simple steps to write 100 bucket list items — make time to write, brainstorm and use questions and prompts.
The bucket list entries may be anything from silly little goals to epic adventures, crazy challenges or gentle achievements. The main point is they reflect YOU.
Now — and this is the most important part — please take action on one item. Start small. Check one ‘easy win’ item off or do little things (look up flights, etc.) on a bigger thing. Get excited and taken action on your bucket list today.