101 Things To Do Before You Die
“Every man dies — Not every man really lives.” ~ William Ross
“The only people who fear death are those with regrets.” ~ Author Unknown
10th August 2017
What’s a Bucket List?
If you haven’t heard about the term “bucket list”, it is a list of all the goals you want to achieve, dreams you want to fulfill and life experiences you desire to experience before you die.
Why Create a Bucket List?
If you don’t live your days by personal goals and plans, chances are you spend most of your time caught up in a flurry of day-to-day activities. Ever felt that your days are passing you by without any tangible output to speak of? What did you accomplish in the past 3 months? What are your upcoming goals for the next 3 months? Look at the things you did and the things you’re planning to do next — do they mean anything to you if you are to die today? Having a bucket list reminds you of what’s really important so you can act on them.
Even if you frequently live by goals or to-do lists, they are probably framed within a certain social context e.g. performance, career, health. A bucket list opens up the context. It’s a forum to set anything and everything you’ve ever wanted to do, whether it’s big, small or random.
It’s just like planning ahead all the highlights you want for YOUR whole life. Even though goal setting is already my staple activity, I still found many new things to do while I was writing on my own list. It was an incredibly insightful exercise. What’s more, coming up with my list gave me a whole new layer of enthusiasm knowing what’s in store ahead!
The objective of creating this list isn’t to instill some kind of a race against time or to create aversion toward death. I don’t see our existence to be limited to just our physical years on earth — our physical lifespan is but a short speck of our existence in the universe.
The whole point of creating your list is to maximise every moment of our existence and live our life to the fullest. It’s a reminder of all the things we want to achieve in our time here, so that instead of pandering our time in pointless activities, we are directing it fully toward what matters to us.
Create Your Bucket List
If you don’t have a bucket list, I highly recommend you to create one. How much will it cost? Zero. How long will it take? Probably 30 minutes to an hour, or more if you get really caught up in the writing. What do you stand to gain? Significant clarity and focus on what you want from your life. It’s an invaluable exchange.
If you already have your list, take this opportunity to review it. See if there are new items you want to add-on. If so, add them in. Check if all the items listed are still relevant. If not, remove them.
Now, take out your pen and paper or open up a text document. Start writing down what comes to mind as you read these questions:
- What if you were to die tomorrow? What would you wish you could do before you die?
- What would you do if you had unlimited time, money and resources?
- What have you always wanted to do but have not done yet?
- Any countries, places or locations you want to visit?
- What are your biggest goals and dreams?
- What do you want to see in person?
- What achievements do you want to have?
- What experiences do you want to have / feel?
- Are there any special moments you want to witness?
- What activities or skills do you want to learn or try out?
- What are the most important things you can ever do?
- What would you like to say/do together with other people? People you love? Family? Friends?
- Are there any specific people you want to meet in person?
- What do you want to achieve in the different areas: Social, Love, Family, Career, Finance, Health (Your weight, Fitness level), Spiritual?
- What do you need to do to lead a life of the greatest meaning?
Come up with as many items as you can. The items should be things you have not done yet. Don’t stop until you finish listing at least 101 things! If you find yourself stuck, chances are you are mentally limiting/constraining yourself. Release those shackles — Your bucket list is meant to be a list of everything you want to achieve, do, see, feel and experience in your life. Check out the next section for added inspiration.
101 Things To Do Before You Die
Here are 101 items to consider for your bucket list. Look through the list — any item that resonates with you? Note that the list below is a sample list of things you can put for your own list — not all of them will work for you, and you shouldn’t do them for the sake of it.
Take the items that resonate with you and use them for your own list!
1. Travel all around the world
2. Learn a new language
3. Try a profession in a different field
4. Achieve your ideal weight
5. Run a marathon
6. Take part in a triathlon
7. Take up a new sport
8. Go scuba diving / snorkeling and experience marine life up close
9. Go skiing
10. Trek the Inca Trail
11. Go horseback riding
12. Do an extreme sport
13. Climb a mountain
14. Learn a strategy game
15. Connect with past teachers
16. Let someone know how much he/she means to you
17. Give a heartfelt surprise to someone
18. Perform a kind deed without expecting anything in return
19. Make a difference in someone’s life
20. Be a mentor to someone
21. Pursue your passion
22. Start your business
23. Fly in a hot-air balloon
24. Sing to an audience
25. Do volunteer work
26. Befriend a stranger
27. Get a drink for a stranger
28. Walk/Dance barefoot in the rain
29. Run barefoot
30. Experience a sunrise/sunset
31. See the Northern Lights
32. Witness a solar eclipse
33. Go stargazing
34. Plant a tree and watch it grow
35. Get a pet
36. Publish a book
37. Do public speaking in front of 1,000 people (or more)
38. Throw a mega party
39. Get a complete makeover
40. Learn wine appreciation
41. Join a social etiquette class
42. Be a matchmaker: Introduce your single friends to each other (the rest is up to them!)
43. Go on a blind date! (for the singles!)
44. Further your education
45. Play a (new) musical instrument
46. Win a lucky draw
47. Take up dancing
48. Learn a martial art
49. Go on a road trip
50. Backpack across at least 10 locations
51. Pack your bags and set off for a random location with no itinerary
52. Protect dolphins and marine life
53. Live in a different country for at least 6 months
54. Act in a film (self-production or otherwise)
55. Get featured in the media for something you are proud of
56. Knit a scarf
57. Create your dream home
58. Whip a home-made meal for your loved ones
59. Bake a cake for someone special
60. Go deep into the heart of Mother Nature
61. See snow (if you haven’t before)
62. Live through 4 seasons of the year: Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter
63. Read a book on a subject you had never thought of reading
64. Volunteer at a hospice
65. Fly a kite
66. Fall asleep on grassy plains
67. Contact a company you like just to thank them for their great product/service
68. Try out vegetarianism for 21 days
69. After that, try veganism
70. Then, try raw veganism
71. Fold 1,000 origami cranes and give them to someone special
72. Conquer your biggest fear
73. Tell at least 10 people about your bucket list and encourage them to join you!
74. Go on a meditation retreat
75. Experience an OBE (out-of-body experience)
76. Start a movement on a cause you believe in
77. See cherry blossoms in Japan
78. Bury the hatchet with people whom you had conflicts with in the past
79. Get closure on any past unhappiness
80. Organise a picnic outing
81. Do something completely crazy and out of character
82. Fly first class
83. Hit bull’s-eye on a dartboard
84. Visit a volcano
85. Fly in a helicopter
86. Meet someone you can only dream of meeting
87. Tell your parents and siblings that you love them
88. Ride a roller coaster
89. Go on a cruise
90. Try frontline jobs for the experience
91. Fall in love
92. Be in a conscious, fulfilling relationship
93. Go on a romantic getaway
94. Do a somersault
95. Visit a castle
96. Change the world
97. Help someone in need
98. Learn sign language
99. See the Mona Lisa (in Louvre, in Paris)
100. Go to a costume party and dress up as your favorite character
101. Gain enlightenment
Get Into Action!
After you finish your list, here’s what to do next:
- Start acting on them! Plan out the successful path toward these goals.
- Be reminded of the list all the time. Use environmental reinforcement — put them up in a prominent spot where you will see them every day/very regularly. Put it in your life handbook, set it as your wallpaper, pin it on your noticeboard, print it out, stick it on your wardrobe/locker.
- Share them with your family and friends. Inspire them to create their own bucket lists too! This way, you also create accountability for yourself as you complete the items on your list.
- Don’t limit your list items to a certain definition. Sometimes opportunity presents itself in a totally different manner. Keep your eyes peeled! The universe will start throwing things your way.
- Review your list regularly. Cross out the things after you do them. See if some of the items become irrelevant and if there are new things you want to add. Just as you finish the items, you’ll add new ones as they come along. There is absolutely no reason why your list should ever be empty. There is such an incredible wealth of things, events, activities, experiences to witness/go through in life that it’s impossible that you will ever be done with living.
It's simple to set up, free to try, and it can make a world of difference for your family if something happens to you.