BOISE, October 15, 2011—The bucket list. There’s been a lot of chatter lately about bucket lists: figuring out what our priorities are and checking them off. After all we need to make sure we do everything we want before we leave this planet after all.
What would you do differently if you knew you were leaving the planet soon? As in, very soon?
For one woman, Michele Baldwin of New Mexico, October 21 will, quite literally, be the beginning of the end of the world for her. The 45-year-old mother of three has been diagnosed with terminal cervical cancer and given mere months to live. She’s chosen to paddle the holy Ganges River in India on a stand-up paddleboard in her final days.
Remember Harold Camping, the doomsayer who swore the world would end six months ago? Now he’s at it again, but this time he says our world will come to an end October 21. That’s four days away. Are his followers frantically trying to check things off their bucket lists? Or did they do it all six months ago?
My question is: why do we need to wait until we’ve only got a few days left to check things off our bucket list? OK, so there are a number of people out there actively pursuing their passions and living their dreams, but there are many more people who aren’t. People who wake up every morning and head out to a job they hate and come home every afternoon unfulfilled. People who are going through the motions of life without much living crammed in there at all.
Are you one of them?
Here are six reasons to live your bucket list now rather than waiting:
- You’ll never have enough money. The money won’t grow on trees and the longer you put it off, the more money you’ll spend on other things.
- You’ll never have enough time. Stop waiting for a month or two or eight to drop out of the sky and fall in your lap. It’s not going to happen. Make the time for the things you want to do.
- Failing is better than not even trying. Is fear of failure holding you back? You might fail, but you’ll never know unless you try. At some point, you’ll look back on your life and reflect on the choices you made. Would you rather look back and know you gave it your best shot or that you were too afraid to try?
- Don’t settle for less than what you truly want. Just because “society” tells you that you should want the 9-5 job, a big house in burbs, and a bunch of cars in the driveway, if that’s not what YOU want, then don’t settle.
- Your retirement may not be what you thought. Will you have your health and be physically able to do the things you want to do?
- You only live once. You’ve got one chance at this thing called Life, and it’s up to you to make it a good one.
Nancy Sathre-Vogel is just a mom who decided to take a bike ride. On the longest road in the world. Some people say she’s exceptionally brave. Others say she’s outrageously foolish. She doesn’t think she’s either. She’s just a mom who wanted an adventure and time with her kids. Her most recent adventure was cycling from Alaska to Argentina, a journey she documented at www.familyonbikes.org
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