I've always liked the idea of a bucket list. However, it seems that for so many people a bucket list is simply a collection of things they think would be cool; a fantasy list. I want to avoid the idea that my goals are something that I would like to do but may never get around to accomplishing. I intend to complete everything on this list, whether that's within the next year or before I die.
I asked my Facebook friends for their suggestions on what to call my non-bucket list. I liked all the ideas, but Dan wins the prize for most comical with "pail plan" and Kel wins for most meaningful with "experiences yet to be had."
I've settled on calling my non-bucket list the Past:Present:Future list to emphasize that each of my goals is something that I've already accomplished, something that I am currently actively pursuing or something that I will actively pursue in the future. Nothing on the list is simply a dream.
Accepting that my goals will change, the list found on this page will remain untouched and serve as an interesting comparison to any future version of the list. The constantly evolving list can be found here and is organized by past, present and future: Past:Present:Future
The list in this blog post is organized thematically and includes a longer description of each goal.
Language is the lens through which we experience the world. Learning a foreign language opens up doors to experiences other cultures in ways that wouldn't otherwise be possible. The languages we speak also shape the way we think, as some thoughts are capable of being more precisely conveyed in one language than another. Here are my language-related goals:
Travel, like language, is something that is very close to my heart. Here are my travel-related goals:
Here are my non-language skill-related goals:
Finally, this is a list of everything that doesn't fit into one of the previous three categories:
What are your big goals? Which goals are you currently actively pursuing? Let's talk in the comments!
Oh man are you an amateur throatsinger as well? I have been practicing doing it for a while and I've made some pretty good progress. I can get some pretty clear overtones on certain pitches. I can also do Kargyraa, which is by far the awesomest-sounding one.
Polyphasic sleep is cool but I think biphasic is probably more realistic.
Also interesting that your language list is about the same as mine. I'm not sure that I really want to dedicate all the time it would take to learn all of them, but language structure is so interesting and easy. And it's fun to decode other languages. En el momento solo sé como hablar en español, pero he empazado aprender el indio. ¿La india? No sé como decir 'indian' en español. ¿Qué dirías tú?
Soy de acuerdo, la structura de las lenguas es muy interesante. En español, yo lo diría hindi.
Ah, sí, por supuesto. ¿Has iniciado aprender la cantar del cuello?
Traté hace muchos años. Me tenía un poco éxito. Ahora no puedo. En el futuro voy a regresar, no se cuando.
Great to see I'm not the only one who sees the threat of Bucket List points being just that - some points someone once wrote down into some list. I decided to call it an Adventure Warranty and had my first article on the new blog about it.
Hope you don't mind my sharing it: http://beetheadventure.com/bee-the-adventure/why-dreaming-wont-do-you-no-good/.
Will be looking forward to reading about the progress you're making with your Non-bucket list!
Awesome, thanks for sharing :) I think this is absolutely fantastic advice from your blog: "Make a fulfilling and adventurous life your most important long-term project." Simple enough that it can be used by anyone to describe all their goals, but powerful enough that you don't lose anything by distilling them down to one all-encompassing thought. Very cool.
When I made my list, I made two lists. "A List to Live By" and "A List To Die By". The Live list is things like "Be Grateful" and "Create". The Die list is the bucket list. I hated the term bucket list too. It probably has to do with that movie starring Nicholson and Morgan Freeman, but I associated bucket lists with old people trying to cross as many off their list as quickly as they can. I wrote mine a couple years ago, and there are a few I don't have a ton of interest in completing anymore. (i.e. doing a kickflip, I haven't skated since I was 13, and I just don't really care about it. Also, I thought it wouldn't be that hard to knock out but I was really wrong about this.) But, it also doesn't feel right taking something off because at one point in my life, I did want to do that thing.
I like the idea of separating you lists into these two categories. I honestly didn't give the former type much thought when I put this list together, but perhaps I should.
I don't think there's anything wrong with editing the list as your interests change. However, I think it would be a good idea to keep the older versions, just for fun.
I probably landed two kickflips in my entire skateboarding career. Definitely a challenging trick.
Great read Austin. I've been neglecting so many of my goals as I've been working solidly on my book. I'm interested to know more about your business model around the Skype education?
Sam, I don't think there's anything wrong with focusing on one goal at a time. In fact, I think you'll make better progress this way. This list is just to remind me that the goals are here and I'll cycle through where I devote the majority of my time. If I want to learn three new languages, I wouldn't practice each of them two hours a day. I would practice one six hours a day for a month, then move to the other for a month, then the other and repeat the cycle. Luke posted a good article about this in Tynan's community section: Using "maintenance mode" to be 100% consistent with your goals. Put everything you don't want to get worse at on maintenance mode and focus all your remaining efforts on kicking out a killer book. When that's done, pick the next thing.
When I started out teaching on Skype, I set up a landing page using Unbounce and bought Facebook ads. I offered a free 30 minute lesson and then accepted payments for 5 or 10 lessons at a time via PayPal. Last month my domain expired and I didn't bother renewing it.
Nowadays, 70% of my Skype clients come from italki. They take a 15% cut but the convenience of finding students and scheduling is arguably worth it. Only problem is there are a lot of great tutors on the site so until you have a stockpile of good reviews you have to be competitive with your pricing. When you have your own site, you can charge a lot higher prices because you're pulling in people from ads who didn't even know it was possible to study on Skype and they don't have anything to compare it to.
The other 30% are people I've either held onto from my early days with a landing page or people I've met in person in Moscow who prefer studying on Skype to studying in person.
No matter what approach you take to finding clients, I recommend finding a way to make your services serve a very narrow audience. I saw my conversion rate shoot up by about 30% when I changed my landing page from "Private online English tutor" to "Private online English tutor for native Russian speakers." You'll immediately turn some people away (for example, anyone who doesn't speak Russian) but the people who fit your target audience will feel like you are the perfect person for them to work with. If your using Facebook ads to find your clients you can of course choose the ads based on which language they speak, ensuring you get a perfect match.
I have a list as well
Apparently sumo is like a traveling circus. There's only one group of sumo wrestlers in Japan and they travel from city to city staying for a couple weeks at a time. They were in Tokyo my first week in Japan but I didn't have any money so I passed on the opportunity. Maybe we can cross off sumo and world record in the same week.
As far as publishing a book goes, check out Asymmetrical Press. They offer a lot of good options for independent authors and they have a really active forum where you can learn the ropes even if you don't decide to publish with them. Plus I work for them as the director of all non-English operations.
I'll look into that. Do you know anything about lulu (www.lulu.com)? I've heard some talk about publishing through them too.
Haven't really heard too much about it. I did a quick search for Lulu on the Asymmetrical community forums and it seems like some of the users there have been happy with the experience. Very easy and straightforward. If you have a really quality product though I think that publishing through Asymmetrical might do a better job of helping you market the book. Just my hunch, I can't say for sure.
You can't control definitively whether you'll succeed or fail, but you do get to set the parameters. The way I live my life, I will either be an big success or a huge failure. There are a variety of potential paths ahead of me, and zero of them lead to comfortable success or minor failure. None of them lead to numb mediocrity.
How do you adjust these parameters? You set goals and accept risks. If you set goals low and don't accept many risks, you have no chance of huge success or huge failure. You'll end up somewhere in the middle. Maybe you'll end up a bit better off than you expected, or a bit down on your luck, but you'll be somewhere in the range of "fine". On the other hand, you can set extremely high goals, leave yourself no reasonable plan B, and take massive risks to get those goals. It's the only way you'll even reach them, but you may fall short and crash.
In my case, I've put all of my eggs in the SETT basket. I hope it becomes a huge success that makes me a lot of money, gives me some power to improve conversation on the internet, and all that. At this point I've invested two years of my life into it, with no plans of changing that allocation going forward. I've passed up many smaller opportunities that could have made me money. I do have some money saved up, but it's hard to count it as a backup plan when I know with certainty that if SETT failed I'd use it to start another company and go all in.
I work as smart as I can, I live frugally, and I plan for contingencies-- I'm not reckless, but when a calculated risk presents itself, I'm all over it.
By Leo Babauta
Some of you might know that I'm a fan of letting go of goals, or living/working without goals ...
So you might be surprised to know that this week, I decided to encourage my kids to create 2014 goals and a plan for accomplishing those goals.
What gives? Well, I thought I'd use goals as a teaching/learning tool in our little unschooling adventure. I've found goals to be unnecessary for accomplishing things, but I don't believe goals are evil, especially if you use them right. And they can be a useful tool to learn about something.
In this case, I'm helping the kids to learn about achieving things. It can be easy in life, and in unschooling, to let the days pass by without doing anything important or exciting. That's fine if you have a job and are getting a regular paycheck, but if you own your own business or are an unschooler, you don't have that luxury. You can take a few days off, but eventually you're going to have to produce.