Why it’s never too early to start a bucket list

What comes into your mind when you hear the words “bucket list’? Most of us probably think of it as a list of things to do when you get older. But in this article we find out more about bucket lists and why it’s never too early to start one.


What is a bucket list?

The phrase bucket list became popular after the release of The Bucket List movie in 2007. The movie starred Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman as two terminally ill men working through a wish list of things to do before they “kick the bucket” ie die.

So a bucket list is simply a list of dreams and aspirations of things that you would really like to do in your lifetime.


When is the best time to start a bucket list?

As we said earlier, it’s never too early. Traditionally, people tend to leave it until they are of retirement age. The theory is that they will have more time and money to do the things that they really want to do.

But unfortunately this is not always the case. There are two things to consider here.


  • People are retiring later

Many people in the UK are beginning to retire later. The state pension age is currently 66 for both men and women, whereas previously it had been 65 for men and 60 for women. It will reach 67 by 2028, and may well change further after that. 

This means that many people are having to work for more years than they had originally expected. They are therefore likely to have less time to pursue their bucket list if they leave it till then. 


  • Bucket lists can be risky

Another factor to bear in mind is that if you leave all your bucket list activities until you are older, you may not be in the position to be able to do them all safely. Especially if they include things such as long distance travelling, extreme sports or other physical activities. 

Leaving such dreams until later in life could mean that you are at increased risk of accident or injury, and may not be able to bounce back as easily as you could if you were younger.


Both the above factors mean that, however old you are, it’s a great idea to start your bucket list now!


How to make a bucket list

When making your bucket list, it can feel even more significant if you have somewhere special to create it. Somewhere that you can see your list developing, and where you can also start ticking things off as you do them.

The way you do this is up to you. Some people like to buy a pretty notebook, or loose leaf folder. Others may prefer to do it on a computer, for example as a Powerpoint presentation. There are also an increasing number of mobile apps designed to help you create your bucket list, for example Iwish.

Once you have decided how you are going to do this, all you need to do is start adding items to your list. We would suggest that you split your bucket list goals into three categories, short term, medium term and long term.


  • Short term goals

These are things that you want to do soon. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that all your bucket list items are for sometime in the future. Start doing them now! Think of things that you really want to do and that you can do over the next year. 

Short term goals don’t even have to be major events; just things that you know you would regret if you didn’t get around to doing them. So try to tick off at least one of your short term goals each month, to make your life more fulfilled.

Some examples of short term goals could be:

  • Visit a town or city in the UK that you have never been to before.
  • Read a book or see a film you have always intended to.
  • Meet up with an old friend you’ve not seen for years.
  • Go to a live music gig, theatre show or sporting fixture.
  • Completely change the style or colour of your hair.
  • Start learning to do something you’ve always wanted to; for example ballet, painting, speaking Italian, playing guitar.
  • Take part in a charity walk or run.


  • Medium term goals

These are goals that need a little more planning, perhaps a couple of years. You may need to start working towards these goals now, saving money, and also liaising with any others who are also going to be involved.

Some examples of medium term goals could be:

  • Plan an exciting trip to a country you have always wanted to visit.
  • Do a big physical challenge, such as the London Marathon, the Camino de Santiago walk, or Lands End to John O’Groats cycle ride.
  • Have a story or book published, or a song recorded.
  • Become a contestant on a TV quiz or talent show.
  • Start your own business, even if it’s just a small sideline to your day job.
  • Become a successful member of an amateur sports team.
  • Attend a major event such as the British Grand Prix, Olympics, World Cup, Royal Opera House, Last Night of the Proms.


  • Long term goals

Long term goals are likely to be those that are easier to do when your circumstances change. For example, when the kids leave home or you no longer have elderly parents to care for, or perhaps if you can be more flexible about when and where you work.

Some examples of long term goals could be:

  • Move to the country / city / town where you’ve always wanted to live.
  • Have an extended trip to somewhere you really want to visit.
  • Free yourself from financial commitments such as your mortgage.


Your own goals – short, medium and long term – may be very different from our examples. But we hope that you feel inspired to start making your bucket list now and, more importantly, start doing some of the things on your list that will help to enrich your life.

If you need a bit of a financial boost to get your started, remember that Loans 2 Go offers short term loans that may be able to help.

Enjoy making your bucket list, and check back here soon for more lifestyle and financial tips from Loans 2 Go.