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6 Overarching Goals You Should Have On Your Bucket List

6 Overarching Goals You Should Have On Your Bucket List

The world is an incredible place. You could spend every single moment of every single day finding something new to do without ever running out of options. It really is that enormous. Unfortunately, many of us choose not to live life to the fullest, instead opting to take the safest and most comfortable route whenever possible. Living this way might be the easiest way to go through life, but it’s definitely not the most fulfilling.

If you want to experience life to its fullest potential, create a bucket list of things you absolutely have to do at least once before you settle into the grave.

1. Travel

The first item on your bucket list should be to get up and get out. Simply put: People who don’t travel get locked into one way of living, and grow to believe it’s the only way to live. They lack the ability to see from different perspectives, and have a hard time accepting people who are different from themselves.

On the other hand, those who yearn to explore the world discover different cultures and ways of living – ironically coming to understand just how similar all humans really are in the process. By traveling the world, you’ll come to find that there is no single “right” way to live your life.

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You’ll also be exposed to the natural beauty of Earth. Whether exploring the rainforests of South America or looking for something to do in Dubai, there’s always more to see as long as you keep traveling.

2. Accomplish a Major Physical Feat

The human body is capable of a lot. However, we sometimes take our physical abilities for granted and allow our talents to go to waste. Of course, not everyone is capable of completing the same physical tasks – but we all can set individual goals that we’d like to accomplish at some point in our lives.

Whether it’s completing a marathon (or even a 10k), performing an extreme sport, or simply losing weight, we should all aim to do something with our bodies while they are full of life and able to run at peak performance.

3. Master a Skill

We’re blessed not only with machine-like bodies, but also with computer-like brains, as well. Our brains are responsible for all of the advances the human race has seen since we evolved tens of thousands of years ago. But, when not put to good use, the mind can be our most wasted gift of all. We should all do something every single day to ensure this doesn’t happen.

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Learn how to draw. Master a musical instrument. Learn a new language (vocal or programming). Become a chess wizard. Find something you love to do, and dedicate yourself to becoming great at it. It’s easy to be a hobbyist, but it’s much more rewarding to be a specialist.

4. Teach a Skill

If you’re good at something, you should never keep it to yourself.

First of all, teaching is the best way to truly learn. When you teach a skill to a newbie, you don’t simply scratch the surface – you dig deep, getting to the nuances of the topic. This means you need to have a true understanding of all facets of the topic at hand, so you can straighten out any confusion in your protege along the way.

Furthermore, when you undertake the responsibility of teaching a skill to a beginner, you pay it forward. You take into consideration all the effort and energy others put into teaching you, and you impart this wisdom in another up-and-coming individual. In this way, you continue a chain of learning that began way before you were even born, and will continue to grow long after you’re gone.

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5. Perform a Random Act of Kindness

Okay, you should definitely perform more than one good deed in your lifetime. In fact, doing nice things for others is a great way to increase your overall happiness. But this goes beyond small deeds like holding doors and buying coffee for the mother in line behind you at Starbucks.

You should aim to do something at least once in your life that truly puts someone else’s needs in front of your own. Make a sacrifice that, while it may set you back a little bit, will make a world of difference in someone else’s life. You never know just how great an effect your efforts can have on the world. Help someone else reach their full potential, and your influence will live on.

6. Do Something that Scares You

This should go without saying, since many of the items on this list likely frighten you at least a little bit. But a bucket list wouldn’t be a bucket list if it didn’t include activities that scare the daylights out of you.

Above all else, you should aim to do something you never thought you would do in life. Though the phrase “you only live once” has become an overused meme over the past few years, the sentiment is true: When you’re lying on your deathbed, you’ll regret the things you didn’t do more than the things you did.

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Don’t let a case of the “what if”s stop you from doing something new and exciting. You never know if you’ll enjoy it unless you give it a shot.

Featured photo credit: Skydiving / Brian Griffiths /Flickr via farm3.staticflickr.com

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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