I Matter Too

As of today, every human is mortal and will die someday. Thanks to the longevity research our lab (https://aging.stanford.edu) and other researchers are doing, we will all hopefully life-long and live well. However, we don’t have to wait until we are dying to complete and fulfill our bucket list. Each and every one of us can complete an annual bucket list every year during the holiday season ( Dr. VJ has been doing her annual bucket list for years  ). This allows us to live our best life and practice mindful living. Based on extensive research we have created a simple tool to help you complete your bucket list. This holiday season, sit down and write your 2024 bucket list. No need to be over-ambitious. List some simple things you want to do using our template. 

What is a Bucket List?

What does "kicked the bucket"* mean?

"Kicked the bucket" is a euphemistic phrase for death.

What is a bucket list?

A bucket list is a list of the experiences or achievements that a person hopes to have or accomplish during their lifetime.  A bucket list is an itemized list of goals people want to accomplish before they “kick the bucket” — or die. 

*Where did the term "kicked the bucket" come from?

The word bucket   from French 'buquet'  denotes  a beam used by butchers in the 1500 s to hang up slaughtered animals by their heels or hooves. In the throes of death, the animals "kicked the bucket". Another possible explanation is that a person who commits suicide by hanging might stand on an inverted bucket and then kick the bucket to die. 

What is the value of a bucket list?

The focus of a bucket list is to live a life with hopes and aspirations. Making a bucket list allows us to reflect on our values and goals, and identify important milestones and experiences that we want to have in our lifetime.

Is a bucket list used only in the context of death?

Not at all. The bucket list has now become a way to denote a list of things a person wants to accomplish before a specific event in their lives. For example, many teenagers have "high school bucket list", "prom night bucket list"

What is the symbolic meaning of a bucket list?

It is a tangible recognition of our mortality. It allows us to reflect on what matters most to us, on our personal values and identify important life milestones and experiences that we want to have before a certain milestone in our life ( e.g. high school graduation, college graduation, before retirement, before we die).

What else does a bucket list signify?

It is a sign of hope and future orientation. It also motivates us to accomplish certain things with a specific timeline.

Can I change the items on my bucket list?

A bucket list is not a static list. As we live our lives, our aspirations change. The goals and aspirations of our teenage years will be vastly different from our aspirations in our twenties and thirties. Young people often have daring deeds listed. As we get older people become more risk averse and their bucket list focuses on goals like traveling and spending time with loved ones.