For the past few years I have been putting together yearly bucket lists on my birthday. I’m a little late this year because my birthday fell on a Monday and I had work. But here it is, finally.
This year, I decided to go bigger and do a 30 before 30. I was talking to my sister and brother-in-law the other day about the point of these lists because surely there is nothing I will suddenly be unable to do after I turn 30. Instead, it gives me a deadline so that I don’t keep thinking “someday I can get around to it.” Furthermore, by posting my list here, I have a sense of being held accountable by you all. Without further ado:
- Visit Japan
- Visit a new country. (Current top picks are New Zealand, Canada, or somewhere European.)
- Bring my total States visited up to 30
- Sleep under the stars.
- See the Grand Canyon
- Take a spontaneous trip.
- See the Aurora Borealis.
- Move to a new city.
Fitness / Sports Goals
- Run a half marathon.
- Go paintballing.
- Try a new sport.
- Take a dance class.
- Rock climb outside.
- Climb a 5.13
- Do a color run.
- Switch out coffee for green tea at least three times a week.
- Find somewhere to shoot archery again.
- Learn how to play poker.
- Go to Comic Con.
- Build a gingerbread house.
- Try to learn a new instrument.
- Volunteer once a month.
- See a musical or play.
- Join another tabletop gaming campaign.
- Try an Escape Room.
- Read 200 books (over the next three years).
- Write a book. (It doesn’t have to be good. Just do it.)
- Work on coding for an hour a week.
- Re-learn how to drive.
I also wanted to share the letter I received from myself this year. A long, long time ago I had a school assignment to write my future self a letter. I think a lot of us had this assignment at some point in time and, for the most part, we probably lost those letters before we reached the appointed date. This letter, however, was e-mailed to me. We set it up through Futureme and set the time for some point in the future. Since that point, I have continued the tradition, sending these emails two or three years ahead. It’s always amazing to me how appropriate the advice past me gives current me. I thought this year’s might be interesting to share:
I don’t know if I can really top the message I sent last time I did this. I guess I was pretty inspired at that time. (Check your archive if you forget.) I’ll go over the highlights: With any luck, you will have landed a decent job after JET. It may not be where you want to be forever, but it is bound to make a good stepping stone. I know you are tired of stepping stones at this point. At least, that’s what you tell yourself. You’re tired of flitting from place to place, making single serve friends and finding excuses not to set down roots. But the truth is, there is also a serious appeal in that. It means you have excuses for not having a bunch of friends, for not feeling like you fit in, and for not having that special someone.
I know that the time between sending this message and receiving it is going to be a pretty confusing and tumultuous time in your life. You have to find a new job, a new place to live, a new group, and re-acclimate to American culture. (Probably. I am assuming I’ll end up in the US, but who knows. I definitely miss doing things in English a lot of the time.) But you’ll get through it, just like you always do. Because that is something you’re good at: enduring. Gamanning it on.
Find a way to continue to use Japanese. Preferably a class, if you can find one. Don’t let Japanese be yet another language that you let fade away.
Remember to continue to push your boundaries and constantly step outside of your comfort zone. No matter what you end up doing, you have done what many people have not. In just your short life you have done so much and you need to remember that. Your parents are proud of you. Your family is proud of you. You are an interesting person. Regardless of your flaws, there are people out there who love you and want to be around you. Remind yourself of this constantly.
It’s good advice and a nice reminder of somethings that I often lose sight of and need to be retold. I haven’t had a chance to write the next one, but it’ll arrive on my 30th birthday, so I’ll have to make it big. An official goal of mine is also to try and keep up this blog with at least one post a month for as long as I can. I have missed writing and being able to share my experiences like this.
Until next time.