7 Tips for Boomers and their Bucket Lists

Ever since the movie that made them famous, “bucket lists” have been part of our conversations on living life to the fullest. Haven’t seen the Grand Canyon? Put it on your list. Care to ride shotgun in a parachute? Write it down. Always dreamed of taking the kids on a cruise? Chart your course.

Whether it’s an inventory of the things you want to do, the people you want to see or the places you want to go, putting them into a more official list is a good way to make things happen. Experts agree, having a list and setting tangible goals is a smart approach to turning dreams into accomplishments.

So where do you start with creating your own bucket list? We looked at what we already know about the spirited Baby Boomer generation and put together these bucket list tips:

1. Make it your own. If birding is your best sport, go for it! Could it be it’s time you finally give in and sign up for a Facebook account? Or maybe it’s the perfect time to look into a knitting club, a curling league or a tap dancing troupe. That independent streak that’s a hallmark of the Boomer generation probably means one thing is for certain--your list will be just that. Don’t worry that it’s not flashy enough or might seem silly to others, just make it a good one that fits your unique style.

2. Give it some thought. Once you commit to doing a bucket list, give it the due diligence it deserves. Start by keeping an idea list for the master list. Jot down notes as you think of inspirations or see things that pique your interest—sort of like those term paper index cards! And that places to go, things to do, people to see guideline is a good one to get the ideas flowing.

3. Stretch yourself a bit… The bucket list is more of a dream-big exercise. So get outside of your comfort zone. At least start there and consider some loftier goals. Do a quick internet search on the topic of bucket lists and you’ll find loads of inspiration—from traveling around the world, to learning a new language, to climbing the highest peak. Think outside the box and know that you can always pare it back from there. It could be a worthy entry is just finally figuring out all of the features on your smart phone!

4. At the same time, keep it real. What good is a bucket list if it brings more guilt than good? As any good Boomer likes to do, find the things you love and follow your bliss. Break each action item into bite-sized steps to help you reach your end goal. The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step—or a quick look at Google Maps to plan your route to Yellowstone!

5. Write it down. Make your list official by writing it down. The process of putting the list together helps make goals clear targets and things you stick to. And by all means, edit. If you find something that sounded like a good idea then isn’t your cup of (homebrew kombucha) tea now, change it up! You are the managing editor of your own bucket list. Not a problem for Boomers who like to be in charge.

6. Share with others. Make yourself a little more accountable for action by sharing your bucket list with friends and loved ones. That might mean posting it on the fridge or posting it on your favorite social media site. Whether you blog about it or just blab about it, the secret is getting it out there so others can cheer you on. You might be surprised by how many supporters you have in your quest. Got that Boomer competitive streak going on? Perhaps you’ll find yourself in a good-spirited rivalry with your brother-in-law on who gets the most comments on their Flickr posts.

7. It doesn’t have to be all fun and games. Sure, your maiden skydiving voyage sounds exhilarating, but bucket list entries might include some more altruistic pursuits. A goal to increase your charitable endeavors is certainly fair game for a bucket list. According to the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), Baby Boomers are at the prime ages for volunteering and the largest, healthiest and best-educated generation in history makes for great volunteers.

It’s no surprise the goal-oriented Boomers are all over this trend of the bucket list. Why not get started on yours and make the most of welcoming the new challenges and goals you set for yourself.

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Informative and interestimng comments.

8/13/12 6:16 AM

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