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So, I’ve talked a few times on here about anti-bucket lists – what they are and why you should consider creating one, how to get started, and some of my own personal examples. (Just look for any blog post with the title: [Inside My Anti-Bucket List].)
But you may be wondering: “That’s all fine and well, but I need an example to look at first of a completed list; not just one or two things here and there. I need more ideas than just a ‘how-to’ guide.”
I’ve got you covered. 🙂
If you are an email subscriber of mine, you will have already likely seen this list, but it is worth showing again. This is an abbreviated, alphabetical version of my own personal anti-bucket list. (It’s not in the same order as the full list, which is what I use when I give numbered examples here on my blog.)
Anti-Bucket List Example:
- Being alone/loneliness
- Being broke and unable to pay bills/being homeless
- Being in charge
- Being recorded on video or audio
- Being touched
- Body image issues
- Breaking neck or back/being paralyzed
- Calling people on the phone
- Disappointing people
- Dislike/squeamishness of certain foods
- Embarrassing myself publicly
- Feeling inferior to others or what I think I should be
- Gas stations
- Getting lost
- Growing old
- Horror genre
- Loss of relationships
- Making the wrong choices
- Not being able to fulfill my dreams
- Not being in control of my car in the winter/car crashes
- Public speaking
- Raw meat
- Rejection/negative criticism
- Small talk
- The outdoors
- The unknown
Now, the point isn’t just to list all of my fears. Others have done that – creating their own anti-bucket lists of things they never want to do – and then stop there.
I want to face these fears.
Because there is something else worth pursuing that I can’t reach without overcoming these fears first. My goals and dreams might look different for each point on the list. Or maybe one goal is hindered by several fears. For example, my dream is to build this blog up to reach a sizable audience in order to help as many people as I can face their own fears and live more courageous, intentional lives. But I can’t do that if I let my fears of ‘success’ or ‘the unknown’ get in the way. So I face them by actively addressing them whenever the opportunities present themselves.
And yes, it is possible to overcome fear.
In reality, this list is already outdated, because really it should be broken down into three categories: conquered, working on, and not conquered yet. 🙂
Keep also in mind too the levels of fluency I touched on earlier in this blog. You may not need to become completely ‘fluent’ in a fear; maybe your level is more…’conversational’. You can get by when you need to, and that’s as far as you want to take it. You aren’t looking to overcome it completely, just to be able to face it if you have to and to know that you’ll be ok. That’s perfectly fine too.
Out of the 40+ items on this list, I’d say I’ve come “close enough” (near-fluent) to conquering three of my fears. I’d also say I’m actively working on three of them. And the rest are just there for now. There’s no rush to try to check everything off my list, but I also don’t want my fears to control me either. If something comes up that I want to do, and the only thing preventing me from doing it are my fears – you bet I will try to deal with them so I can do the thing I really want to do.
There’s no magic pill for overcoming fears. It requires time and effort and a lot of other conditions. It’s not going to be a “do this once and you’ll never have to worry about it again” sort of list. This is a process. But is it worth it? YES!!
Everyone has something they don’t want to face. Some of us have several things we fear or dislike.
But more importantly, we all have dreams and goals too. What are yours?
And are there any fears preventing you from fulfilling them?
If so, those things should be on your anti-bucket list. In the meantime, I hope my own list gave you some ideas to get started.
And for those of you who have already begun this process, I have a gift for you. Remember how I said that my list should be divided into sections to track what I have done, what I’m working on, and what still needs to be addressed? I created a printable where you can track just that same information for your own list. There’s also a section at the bottom to record ideas you have on how to celebrate your successes, because I’m all about celebrating!! I think wins should be recognized, whether large or small. So if you are interested in the printable, you can download it here. Hope you find it helpful! 🙂
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