Life is short. So we should live it to its fullest, right??
But it’s tough sometimes, isn’t it?
It’s all too common to find yourself completely caught up in the daily grind. The days pass you by and just don't seem to feel as fulfilling as you'd like. It doesn’t have to be this way!
We at Conquest Maps believe that travel is one of the most powerful remedies to this problem!
At its core, the act of travel will help you to become a more well-rounded, optimistic and open-minded person. A person who’s always ready to push themselves to their full potential. Who wouldn’t want that?
But it doesn’t just happen. You’ve got to choose to want to travel more and take deliberate action to make it happen. That’s the only way you get to reap the benefits.
The best way to get started on this path is fortunately both fun and simple! Create a bucket list.
By creating a bucket list, you can pinpoint all of the epic things you want to accomplish in this lifetime. It really solidifies your core values and clarifies what is most important to you in life.
And even if you don’t have one yet, it’s pretty much guaranteed that there will be quite a lot of destinations that find themselves on your bucket list when you make it!
We are strong believers that everyone should have a bucket list, and here’s why!
Why it is important to create a Bucket List:
- Pushes you beyond your comfort zone
- Forces you to evaluate your priorities and what you actually want out of life
- Helps you narrow down short and long-term goals to make you significantly more likely to achieve them
- Maximizes the incredible experiences in your life
- Ensures you lead a fulfilled life that you are excited to look back on
- Helps you dream bigger and bolder
Are you with us? Seems like a pretty solid upside, right? Here’s how to get started with yours.
Simple Steps to Create Your Bucket List
First, find a place where you feel most inspired. This could be your local coffee shop, a bench by a peaceful pond or anywhere else that you can let your imagination run wild, unencumbered by your normal environment.
Now take out pen and paper (or a digital doc if you prefer) and start to write down all of the experiences, destinations, skill sets, goals and dreams you want to achieve!
Put down anything and everything that comes to your mind - unedited and unfiltered. The sky's the limit here - nothing is too crazy or impossible. Try to get the list to at least 100. If you feel stuck, you may be limiting yourself. Cut that out :)
A list of questions to get your juices flowing:
- What would you do if you had unlimited time, money and resources?
- If you had 24 hours left on earth, what would you do?
- What are your biggest goals and dreams?
- What skills have you always wanted to learn?
- What travel destinations must you visit before you die, no matter what
2. Include a mix of short and long term goals
Of course your bucket list should have larger, far-fetched and challenging goals. But it should also include realistic, low-hanging fruit goals too.
3. Break it down by time frames
An overall lifetime bucket list can feel too long and overwhelming. You may find it more manageable if you break your list into smaller categories or time frames. A few travel-related ideas include:
- By 30, 40, 50 Bucket List: What do you want to accomplish before you reach your next birthday milestone? Think 30 countries by 30, 50 states by 50, etc.
- By year Bucket List: Similar to making New Year's resolutions, this can be everything you want to achieve this year. But you don’t have to wait until January 1st to start!
- Country or City Bucket List: When you visit a new place that you plan to stay for more than just a few days, it can be helpful to create a list of all the experiences you want to have so you don’t miss anything.
4. Always keep your WHY top of mind
Don’t ever lose sight of your motivation behind traveling (or whatever other activities make it onto your list). Is it to experience new cultures? Try new foods? Push yourself outside of your comfort zone? Everything on your bucket list should be in line with your personal mission.
Ask yourself: Is this goal aligned with my priorities? How will it make me feel when I achieve this bucket list item?
5. Remove any unrealistic items
We believe that most everything can be achievable if you really want it. Don’t remove something just because it would be expensive or you don’t yet know how you would achieve it. There are creative ways to save money or find time, and you can work on your easier items on your bucket list while saving up for the harder ones.
6. Prioritize your top 3 items
Run through your list and mark the 3 goals that excite you the most. Also keep in mind any items that have a time limit that you may want to do sooner rather than later. Organize the rest of your list based on both your desire and your realistic ability to make them happen. For more in depth tips on prioritizing your goals, check out this post.
7. Run through the 5 W’s
- Why? Why is this item on your list meaningful to you?
- Who? Are you doing it solo or with an adventure buddy?
- When? Is there a certain time of year or time of day this needs to happen? Set a deadline.
- Where? Where do you need to go and how will you get there?
- What? What do you need to make this goal a reality? How long will it take to save up money or PTO? What is your first step?
8. Make it visual
Visualize your travel goals and inspiration by displaying them proudly in your home. With regards to travel, this is most certainly a Conquest Maps push pin map!
By pinning all of the destinations you want to visit next, it’s easier to prioritize your bucket list and what’s most important to you! By immersing yourself in your goals every day, you will be more motivated for saving, planning and feeding your desire to travel!
9. Surround yourself with people who inspire you
Did you know your friends' willpower can rub off on you? This phenomenon is called social contagion and it’s a very real thing. If you find people who are also actively pursuing their bucket lists, you are more likely to feel inspired to take action on your own! As Jim Rohn said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
Pro tip: Join the For the Love of Travel Facebook community to find like-minded travelers for accountability.
10. Set aside time to work on your bucket list
Choose a specific day and time each week (or month) to either plan or check off items on your bucket list. This is the only way you will make progress. For example, create a budget for your dream trip to Spain or book tickets to take it one step further!
11. Commit to your top 3 items
It’s important to commit to your top destination goals to make them more tangible. Continue to keep them in front of you daily and tell the world about them. These are the best ways to ensure that you actually achieve them!
12. Revisit often
This may sound strange, but your bucket list should never be 100% finished. You are always growing and changing as a person, so your bucket list should be an ever-evolving document. You will want to revisit and reprioritize often based on what matters most to you. You never know when you’ll be struck by a desire to go somewhere or do something new. Add it to the list!
Ideas for inspiration
- Become fluent in a new language
- Visit all 7 Wonders of the World (Ancient, Natural, New)
- Visit all 50 States in the USA
- Go scuba diving/snorkeling
- Go skydiving/bungee jumping
- Go skiing (snow or water)
- Climb a mountain
- Volunteer in another country
- See the Northern Lights
- Visit every country in the world
- Pack your bags and set off for a random location with no itinerary
- Live in a different country for a year
- Fly first class
- Step foot onto all 7 continents
- Attend the Olympics
- Hike through all 63 (+) National Parks
- Go on a safari in Africa
- Spend a week camping off the grid
- Swim with sharks or dolphins
- Take a solo trip
Are you ready to start making headway on your bucket list? The most important things to remember are:
- By committing to specific destinations and adding them to a push pin map, you will have daily inspiration to keep you excited to check items off your bucket list (and replace those “bucketlist” pins with “achieved” pins!)
- By writing down your bucket list, you are significantly more likely to achieve your goals.
- By telling your others about your bucket list, you are bound to be successful.
When you always keep travel top of mind with a bucket list, you’ll be able to take trips more often and gain so much more out of your adventures too!
And to bring your destination goals to life in your home, you’ll need a push pin map to visualize that new bucket list! Each new pin on your map marks a once-in-a-lifetime travel experience or a place you are itching to go next. You will never be short on motivation to travel when you see it as a proud reminder every day!