courtesy of Kate O'Kula

courtesy of Kate O’Kula


Some people don’t like bucket lists. They feel that creating one anticipates the end of life.

Contrarily I suggest that a bucket list creates a life plan. It’s a great way to make sure life contains what is important to you. It’s also helps cement a happy, productive relationship for retired couples.


What goes into a Bucket list, and how do you create it?

Retirement is a great time to create your list because most of us have fewer family or work responsibilities and have freedom to think more about what matters to us. Travel, interests you would like to pursue, possible volunteer activities and time with family or friends are typical considerations for retirees’ bucket lists.

Your finances may determine how far and how much you can travel, but first, dream about where you want to go. You may need to cut back on the cost and style of your dreams or minimize other spending but you won’t know until you dream. A Bucket List is a guide that can be altered until you are totally comfortable with your plans or can change as you discover new goals.

What dreams of your youth got buried in the shuffle of life? Did you want to play an instrument, write a book, learn to sail, ride a horse, or make a boat but didn’t because you got caught up in a career. Now may be the time to pursue one of those dreams and make it the central focus in your list.

If you’re interested in volunteer work consider your skills, interests and time commitment before deciding how you can best help others. This isn’t a selfish approach. Rather, having thought through those ideas will help you contribute most effectively.

What role does a bucket list play in a happy relationship?

Once you and your spouse have created your personal plans, it’s time to create a plan that honors individual and mutual dreams. Making sure that each of you have time for your own dreams and for shared interests helps solidify a contented retirement marriage!

What’s in your bucket list? Will you share your list—or even one item—below with other readers?

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