I recently came across the concept of the “reverse bucket list” and apparently, it’s a thing. If you’re new to this term, like I was, what this basically means is, instead of making a list of the goals you would like to achieve or the places you would like to visit before you die, you make a list of the goals you have already accomplished – think of it as a summary of your current life’s status.
As a Life Coach, I LOVE the building energy that comes with acknowledging your victories, giving a nod to all the growth you’ve accumulated and of course, being thankful for all the lessons you have learned in your life so far. You might be wondering, what are the real benefits of going through such exercise? Why not go about your day doing your thing? Well, I have two basic reasons why and as a bonus, I will tell you also how you can get started on your own life’s status or “reverse bucket list” in a way that is supportive of your journey.
ONE – So, what is the first benefit of going through your current life’s status? First of all, it doesn’t matter whether you’re in your early 30’s or late 50’s, anytime is a good time to assess where your life is. This is supposed to be a fun and easy-to-do exercise for you, so use that coffee shop napkin or use your favorite software, use whatever speaks to you. Second, just like you would prepare for weekly project updates with a client, it makes sense to have a basis from which you can conclude: “hey I’m proud of what I’m doing and I should keep it up.” Or “you know what, it seems like I could change some things in this or that area of my life and be happier.” If we take selfies of the “before” in the name of wellness or beauty, why wouldn’t we do the same with our lives so we can compare the results later? When you can tangibly compare results based on your hard work, not only are you making yourself proud, but you are also motivating yourself to be your own leader and biggest proponent.
TWO – The second benefit comes from the fact that you are the only person who knows you best. You know everything you have been through and even though you might want to, you can’t lie to yourself. Since you are the person who knows you best, wouldn’t it make sense that you should be your own best friend? We go above and beyond for those friends we truly love, right? So, if you are your own best friend, wouldn’t you do anything to make yourself happy? So, full self-disclosure leads to self-love and that love leads to self-growth… see how the dots connect?
HOW do you go about doing this current life’s status assessment for yourself? Well, this is a very personal process, so as much as I would love to provide you with a “template,” the best way to approach this exercise, is to answer the following questions as they apply to your life, and go from there.
What are the 3 to 5 most important areas of my life right now? Rank each area in level of importance to you. If you can only come up with two areas or if you list more than 5, don’t stress – when you are done with this whole exercise you may edit, or not – there really is no right or wrong answer.
List everything under each area that makes you smile. Notice I’m not suggesting to list goals you’re proud of and that is because I believe the purpose of life is to find happiness… so anything that makes you smile and happy is a key component to your success. As your creative juices are flowing you may inadvertently jot down something you are not necessarily too happy or proud of, and it is OK. Let it all flow.
Scale your level of satisfaction with each area. On a scale from 1 to 10, 1 being completely and utterly dissatisfied with and 10 being absolutely and utterly satisfied, how would you rate each area of your life after you’ve completed your list? Once you’re done rating all your areas, focus on the extremes of each: those areas where you rated yourself 3 or below and those areas you rated yourself 8 and above and ask yourself: What do I want to do about this? This is where the magic happens because you can always change those low rating as much as you make those perfect 10’s an 11 – It is all up to YOU. Remember change only happens as long as you are willing to commit to it.
So what did you think of this experience? Did you get stuck or did you go through it all the way? What did you learn about yourself and what is the next step for you? Let’s talk! I’m here to help.