100 Things...Making Your Bucket List


Just over 10 years ago I was going through a class for people who were newly divorced.  It was sponsored by a Green Bay church, and we met once a week.  Every week we had an assignment that was supposed to help us grow as individuals.  In addition to spending more 'alone' time, the leader of the class encouraged us to try doing activities we used to enjoy as children, and to add new activities to our lifestyle.  One week, we had an assignment to interview people and get a list of 10 things they had already done that they had really enjoyed doing.  We could use personal interviews, phone calls, e-mail...whatever means would get the job done.   Once we had their lists for inspiration, we should brainstorm a list of 100 things we'd like to do over the course of the rest of our lives.  Some of them should be easy, and others should seem unattainable.  This was before the movie, The Bucket List (released in 2007), so it was a new concept for me.  What is kind of funny now is that I asked Abdulhamid for his list via e-mail.  We hardly knew each other back then, and had just been co-workers for a brief time a few years before this.  Neither of us knew that we both were recently divorced.  I reached out because I knew he'd lived a very different life than my own.  I guess you could say, this is what brought us together and he's the reason my bucket list got done.  His own list is pretty far reaching too, so I've enjoyed being with him on some of his adventures.

When we traveled to Australia in January, I read an article in the Qantas in-flight magazine about an Aussie man, Sebastian Terry, who'd made a list of 100 things he'd like to do. He called it a wish list.  His list was inspired by a friend who had died at age 24.  I was so inspired by his list that I cut it out and put it in my bag.  He had some pretty huge goals, as well as some fun ones.  I followed up with him and recently received his new book in the mail.  He has a website and a facebook page where you can follow his activity.  People started sending him their lists so now there's a place on his website where you can link with others to get help or receive help doing what you have on your list.  The point is that when you share your list with others, people have a natural tendency to help and you'd be amazed at what you're able to do.  He set as one of his big goals to raise $100,000 for charity and it seems he's really going to do it.

So my list is finished, and among the things I've enjoyed are: riding a camel at the pyramids, seeing Machu Picchu, learning to rollerblade, visiting my pen pal in Japan, cruising to a tropical place, learning about a non-Christian religion, trying new foods, take better photographs, learning to cook foreign dishes.... I never thought I'd be done so quickly.  Remember at the time I made this list, I was a single working mom with no means to achieve more than 10 items on my list! I didn't even own a digital camera.

Now it's time to make a new list, although I doubt I can still come up with 100 more things, so it may be shorter.  What I've enjoyed more than completing my own list though has been bringing others along with me on the way.  My own kids are big thinkers too and they are so much fun to be with.  I've also met so many nice people along the way.  It's made my life richer in so many ways that I never imagined.

So now I encourage you to make your list and tell everyone you know what's on it.  Post it on your refrigerator or bedroom mirror and think about how it can happen.  You'll be amazed at how your life can change!


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