A Lesson in Bucket List Etiquette

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Something you should know about me: I am a proud cheeseball. I love all the cheesy things in life and will gladly participate in the most cliché of life’s traditions simply because I love them.

Do I faithfully create a list of New Year’s resolutions each December in preparation for the new year? Yes. Yes, I do.

Do I like heart shaped chocolates, teddy bears, and red roses on Valentine’s day? So much.

So it is no surprise that I also keep a serious Bucket List that I update often.

See, cheeseball. Guilty as charged.

I think everyone should have a Bucket List, or some sort of a list of goals they aspire to accomplish in life. Whether it’s written down in a hand-stitched, leather bound, $75 dollar Anthropologie journal, or typed up on a Word document, or even a simple mental list, you should have one. My Bucket List is currently spread among two and a half journals, a Word document, and a Pinterest board that I barely pin to- but I’m working on consolidating.

While I don’t think that creating a Bucket List is an art form, there are certain things to think about before starting one. Here is a small lesson in proper BL etiquette.

Your BL is a curated list. It is a work in progress, always. You won’t think of every entry immediately so don’t worry if you only have five things on it when you begin. Like most people’s, your BL may become so massive you’ll have to edit it down to a sensible number of reasonably unreasonable goals. Run a marathon?  Keep it. Drop a penny from the top of the Statue of Liberty? You can probably remove this and still live a full life (plus, isn’t this illegal? Thighs of steel beat an orange jumpsuit and the disgrace of having your family nickname you “Jailbird” any day).

Your BL should be kept in a place where you can always access it in the event of an inspirational Code Red. In the medical field we have this fancy term for bleeding to death called exsanguination. The fix for something like that? To pump you full of blood. Think of your Bucket List as a metaphorical cooler full of O Negative Packed Red Blood Cells in the event of inspirational exsanguination.

The proper makeup of a BL is as follows: 10% things that are nearly impossible to accomplish without the help of at least 1 famous or well-connected person, a prayer, and the total disregard for your comfort zone. 15% things that are daring but relatively easy to accomplish but you probably won’t do them if you don’t write them down. 25% things that are pretty difficult to do because they require some sort of mental or physical challenge for you. Overcome a fear of spiders belongs in that category. 15% things that are incredibly cliché and that EVERYONE has on their BL, e.g., Get a tattoo or Dance in the pouring rain. 10% charitable causes (let’s not be selfish, people). 20% things to do with your best friend. There can be some overlap in those categories. You probably noticed there is an extra 5% left over in that formula. That 5% is wiggle room. You’re welcome.

Have fun with your BL. There are enough people out there trying to tell you how to live your life the “correct” way. Don’t let these people tell you that to Have dinner at a fancy restaurant by myself is not BL worthy. They clearly don’t understand the amount of gusto this takes for some people. A little advice from personal experience: do it to cross it off your list, then do it often. It’s so worth it to treat yo’self and you get a little confidence boost. Put on your list what feels ambitious to you. Do you boo. Just follow the aforementioned formula or you’ll do it wrong.


xx Court xx


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