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March 29, 2018 | How To

Bucket lists 101 with Lexie Carter

By Lexi C.

Raise your hand if when you think of traveling in your twenties it’s either:

a) Going to your parents for the holidays or

b) A short weekend trip where you can stay at a friend’s place

Anything more and you tend to push it into the depths of your brain while saying, “I’ll take that epic adventure when I’ve saved up enough.” Thinking the entire time, that you’ve locked away a dream that won’t be released until you’re older or retired.

If you’re anything like me, it feels impossible to splurge on something enjoyable like a trip to Costa Rica. LBH, financial responsibilities in our twenties rarely match our paychecks… *Groceries cost how much!?* Yet, at the same time, our friends are posting pictures on Facebook and Instagram of their recent trip to Europe with their significant other… or brunch pictures at that new swanky place that charges $30 for french toast – those are always hardest to look at, why doesn’t my french toast ever look like that?!? — That’s when FOMO kicks in.

So while we wait and wait to travel, the stress piles up, and it feels like we’ll never get out from under it. But when is enough? How can we actually think differently about traveling and doing something about it?

Why You Need A Bucket List

No, believe it or not, it’s not something that only old people create. For those who believe and practice “YOLO” (is that still cool to say?! If not, I’m bringing it back ), creating a bucket list revolves around the mentality of “I may never have another chance to do this.” Today, it’s so easy to get caught up in “responsibilities” and tending to everyone else’s needs. It’s easy to put ourselves second, or third, or fourth…or even forget about our own dreams altogether! So dream big, don’t hesitate, and go for it – the only moment we are guaranteed is now.

How To Create Your Bucket List:

I know I’ve talked a lot about travel so far (can you tell where my head is at?!), but your bucket list isn’t restricted to travel. As you first create yours think about your interests. What do you like to do in your day-to-day life? Do you love reading about history and romance? Do you love going to the beach or grabbing some drinks with friends? Your interests will start to define your bucket list and the things you want to accomplish.

Keep adding to your bucket list:

Bucket lists are like pizza. The more you add onto it, the better. (We can debate this in the comments if you want.) As you cross things off your bucket list, add new things on there. If you’re 80 and your bucket list is the same as it was today, something went wrong.

Need an example to get you started? Look at travel trends. For instance, Portugal is one of the hottest places to travel to this year because it’s affordable, a quick 6-hr flight from the East Coast, with beautiful architecture, seafood, wine, etc. AND it still has a “hidden gem” aspect of travel. Add it to the list!

"Dream big, don’t hesitate, and go for it – the only moment we are guaranteed is now."

Make your bucket list attainable

Want to learn Mandarin? Great. Want to declutter your wardrobe? Add it to the list. You saw the Olsen twins fall in love with two French Boys in “Passport to Paris” and now YOU want to fall in love with a French boy in Paris? Spectacular! Write it down.

Then, make it a reality piece by piece; get a passport, get a flight, get a French boy. It’s obviously easier said than done, but bottom line, to achieve items on your bucket list you have to be willing to get out of your comfort zone in one way or another.

Steps To Check Things Off Your Bucket List:

1) Start saving

Yes, we all might want to live life like Beyonce, which makes saving tricky. But, it’s easy to chip away at some of the habits or routines we may have picked up to watch our savings grow; make your coffee each day instead of the $6 cold brew, hold off on eating out except for special occasions, stay in every other weekend to save the $50+ you would have otherwise spent on drinks for an epic adventure. If you have the time, pick up a side job; work at that $6 cold brew place, help Grandma clean her house, stuff like that.

2) Plan ahead

If you want to go to London, do your research ahead of time. You know that you want to go to Warner Bros. Studios while you’re there. Check out ticket prices, transportation, meals, etc, so you’re not stuck paying full price for anything.

3) Use financial apps

There are a ton of great apps out there that can track your spending and transactions to reach your savings goals for any of the items on your bucket list! Everything from apps that’ll track your progress on a savings goal, to notifying you of all the monthly subscriptions your paying for (and need to cancel), to giving you cash back when you shop on certain websites! Oh and if one of your goals is to travel overseas, there are apps out there that’ll help you find credit cards with no international fees! #Score!

If you're itching to see the world but feeling low-key overwhelmed, a bucket list is the perfect way to make your travel dreams attainable. With the right saving habits and a solid plan, you'll be crossing things off your bucket list (and making room for new adventures) before you know it. What are you waiting for? Get out there!

Start your bucket list now

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