Sunday, September 11, 2011

Bucket List Items - One & Done, or New Vocation?

I've never had a bucket list, at least in the sense of actually writing things down.  That said, there are certainly things that I’ve always wanted to do and rather assumed that someday I'd get around to them.  Come to think of it, maybe I have had a bucket list, just in nebulous form.
Why bring this up?
I’m wondering how often a bucket list item, once accomplished, leads to a new hobby, a new job, or a new way of life.
For example, I’ve always had a vague desire to climb Mt Rainier, and I may do so some day.  If I do, I really doubt that it will lead me to take up mountain climbing.  In this particular case it is due to advancing middle age, accumulating nagging injuries, and the suspicion that I won’t enjoy it all that much.  Still, the mountain is there so I’d like to climb it, and if I do accomplish the feat I will likely just check it off the list, start pounding ibuprofen, and never do the like again.
My bucket-list writing of a novel, however, has the potential to be a game-changer.  I’ve always liked to write, and over the years I mustered the motivation to write and sell a few magazine articles as well as crank out an annual Christmas letter.  But, in the back of my mind lurked the thought that I should bestir myself and write a novel, and in 2007 I actually began.  I gave myself one year to write it, the first draft was complete after 14 months (not bad, really), I revised up to a third draft, then let it simmer for over a year, and took it up again in the summer of 2010.
I really, really like working on it.  So much so that, although it’s an extremely intimidating thought to think of writing another, I may do so.  Writing is at the very least a new hobby and could very will morph into something bigger.
How often do bucket-list items, once accomplished, become life changers?

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