Skydiving. Hiking to the top of Mt. Everest. Watching a sunrise at Stonehenge. While these are more adventurous or far-fetched of goals than most of us might desire to one day to achieve, they are certainly among the possibilities one might consider for a bucket list. A “bucket” list first became used as a term to describe all of the things in life a person might want to accomplish before “kicking the bucket” – dying.
More recently, the concept of a bucket list has been applied for things one might want to do during a certain phase of their life (e.g. a bucket list to do before turning 30) or crossing over certain milestones like marriage, having a child, for retirement, and so on. I have even heard of a summer bucket list (things to do with your child during summer vacation); so, why not a divorce bucket list?
A divorce is a huge transition in emotional and relationship status and a time of contemplation while standing on the threshold of a past married life and a single future.
What will the future look like?
What do you want your future like?
What has been left, so far, undone in your life?
What are some things you could do for yourself to explore your needs and who you have become?
What do you owe yourself for the pain you’ve gone through and to be in the best possible emotional state to take the next step?
When put this way, I would say you owe it to yourself to make a bucket list!
Now is as good of time as any to treat yourself, experience new things, get perspective, and turn a new leaf.
What might you put on a bucket list? Well, the options are infinite and will be as unique as each individual.
Perhaps you will make themed bucket lists for various areas of your life (e.g. a sexual bucket list, a professional bucket list, a travel bucket list, and so on). Perhaps you will want one all-encompassing bucket list to include all boxes you wish to check off of your mental list.
Will you have a set number of item? Will you make your list concrete by displaying it prominently and marking each one off or maintain your tally in your mind? Will you allow yourself to continue to add items to your list or keep a strict list with your original ideas? Will you give yourself a time limit? How will you hold yourself accountable? Will it be a list of fantasies or will you make a concerted effort to achieve them? Only you know the answers to these questions, but they should be considered before starting a bucket list.
Need some bucket list inspiration? Here are a few possibilities:
Reconnect with a friend or family member whom you either had a falling out or lost touch with.
Go back to school or take the necessary classes you need to advance in your current career or get into the one you wish you had.
Travel to some new places you have always wanted to go.
Learn a skill or hobby you have always been interested in. maybe pottery, parasailing, horseback riding, learn about wine, cooking, and so much more.
Find ways to connect and bond with your children on a deeper level. Perhaps a shared hobby, a trip, reading a book series together, regular dates and outings, and so on.
Maybe you want to put a greater emphasis onto taking care of yourself and you might want to consider a regular massage appointment, a new fitness program, learning meditation to decrease stress, a new wardrobe, and similar.
You might consider sharing your intentions with a friend or even inviting them to join you for some or all of your goals. Often, when we make such dreams somewhat public it results in making them seem more alive and drives us to take the process more seriously.
If you choose a major goal, such as that sunrise at Stonehenge, you will need to be realistic in the way you approach the goal by breaking it down into manageable pieces and determine what kind of investment of your resources will be needed to make your dream become a reality. Perhaps Stonehenge is a bit too lofty of a bucket item and you need to scale it back to something you can attain. On the other hand, the sky may be the limit, in which case you just need to set a plan in motion!
No matter how big or small of a goal you set, don’t be afraid to reach out for what you desire! Do your research, plot a course, and pledge to make some wonderful things come to life for yourself! Take advantage of the rare opportunity that a big life change, such as divorce, offers in the way a chance to write an exciting new chapter for yourself. Grab yourself a bucket and start filling it up with ideas!