A few weeks ago we watched the film the Bucket List, where Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson’s characters discover they have terminal cancer and set out to write and complete a bucket list and this got me thinking about what would be on mine. What are the things that you’ve always wanted to do?
When we moved into our first home together back in 2011 we wrote a sort of bucket list of things we wanted to do before we turned 30. We misplaced the list on the move here so I’m not sure exactly what all was left on it but we definitely did tick a few things off. For me, visiting New York and the Maldives, seeing Niagara Falls and going scuba diving. For Mark, visiting Las Vegas, moving abroad and also running a marathon (that one never made the cut on mine) but there’s many things that I’m sure we never managed to do from our list and our 30th birthdays have now been and gone and until we watched this film I had all but forgotten about the list. That’s the thing with bucket lists you always think you’ll have more time to do the things that you want to do and so there’s never an urgency about them, until possibly it’s too late.
I’m by no means advocating that we should be morbid; I don’t think we should think about impending death when we’ve no reason to, but I also think it’s important that we take the opportunity to do the things we want to do while we still have the chance. Dying without too many regrets is probably one of the greatest things we can ask for in this life. So however simplistic or extravagant your bucket list is, make the effort to tick off the things that matter to you. Save up for that trip you’ve always wanted to take. If you’ve always wanted to skydive, do it, be brave and jump out of that plane! You want to start your own business? What can you do now to make that happen? You want to go back to university? Fill in that application form! There’s someone you love that you haven’t told? Tell them! Make the most of the time you have as none of us knows what the future holds.
So what should you put on your list? Well if life suddenly had an expiration date what would you regret not having done? I’m sure at that point maybe visiting certain countries or seeing the wonders of the world might fall lower on the priority list. So maybe a bucket list can be about going places and doing things you’ve always wanted to do but maybe more importantly it’s also just about having lived a good and happy life and making sure that those you love know it. Morgan Freeman’s character asks at the end of the film, “Have you found joy in your life? Has your life brought joy to others?” …..Have you? Has it? If not why not start working now to make a change and work on ticking off the things on your bucket list, both big and small.