The Bucket List

“The distance of the road to success becomes shorter as soon as you take the first step.”
– Greg Phillips

The 2007 movie The Bucket List coined a new phrase, “It’s on my bucket list.” The Bucket List merely added to the pre-existing belief that we have at least 1,000 places to see, restaurants to dine at, or books to read before we die. I imagine someone will come up with the top 1,000 Starbucks to visit and taste the latest coffee before you die, too. An entire philosophy exists around the hundreds and obviously thousands of things we should do before the end.

In fact, the idea of the bucket list has become universal. For example, I travel extensively and spend a lot of time on planes and in airports and meet amazing people from around the world. I always hear conversations related to the statement, “It’s on my bucket list”.

The very idea of a bucket list suggests an inventory of “dreams” without deadlines. Places to 
go, restaurants to eat at, or entertainment (books, movies, plays, concerts, etc.) to experience sometime in the future – if at all. While some people may take their bucket lists seriously and systematically plan to check off each place, thing or experience, other people half- heartedly joke or fantasize about doing those things with little or no intention behind it.

This assertion has been validated time and time again when I travel. After striking up a conversation with someone during my travels, I usually inquire and ask a question such as, “Do you have an exact timeframe
of when you want to check off the specific item on your bucket list?”
Of course, the majority of the time the answers are always the same and involve no timeline, lack of money, family obligations or external circumstances. Typical responses go like this: “No, I just want to go before I die.” The next answer involves financial excuses like, “I can’t afford it.” “I’ll have to wait until I retire.” Next, for parents the reason
is, “I can’t go. The kids are in school.” And finally, when it comes to business or the desire to start one, “I can’t start the business [fill in the person’s passion] because banks are not lending.” Others will say, “The economy stinks.”

Consider putting on your bucket list two things if you travel regularly: Put a smile on your face no matter how bad the travel nightmare is along with saying, “hello!  How are you doing today?” to the person sitting next to you.

Enough already, write down your goals every day with a timeframe, say it out loud, read it at night before bed, and bring in all five senses. Take some action and turn your fantasies into realities.  No more bucket lists.

By Wayne Kurtz

Wayne Kurtz is founder of and Endurance Racing Report,  he has a lifelong passion for racing in various endurance sport races throughout the world. He is also the author of: ‘Beyond the Iron, a training guide for ultra-distance triathlons.’