What is a Bucket List?
Now that we’ve officially launched the bucket list blog, let’s take a closer look at the term “Bucket List”, where it comes from and how it’s used today. We’re not scholars or linguists by any means but we did scour quite a few resources to come up with our take on it. So here goes our own bucket list definition…
It originates from the term “Kick the Bucket” which is considered slang for dying and there are several theories why it’s called that. These theories range a little and they vary from a method of execution (they used to hang people back in the day and they would make the person stand on an upside down bucket, and when it was kicked that was it… :-() to the children’s game of kick the can. (pls see the Wikipedia Definition here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kick_the_bucket) for all the details).
The term is popular amongst a variety of cultures speaking different languages and several sources online indicate its been in use since the early/mid 2000’s. It became popularized a household term after the movie “The Bucket List” came out. (Great movie by the way!)
Here is a couple of other bucket list definition sources we found online:
- Oxford Dictionary: http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/bucket%2Blist
- Merriam Webster: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bucket%20list
- Urban Dictionary: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=bucket%20list
- Online Slang Dictionary: http://onlineslangdictionary.com/meaning-definition-of/bucket-list
Many individuals, ourselves included, like to write out “to do” lists for themselves to keep organized, prioritized, and accountable. Many psychologists strongly believe that people are more likely to achieve their goals if these are written down (http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/200307/the-goals-guide-us). A Bucket List typically will contain ideas, experiences, achievements that are worthy of a passionate discussion with a friend and can range from simple items like eat a slice of spam, shave my head, etc… to once in a lifetime experiences like set a world record, etc… and everything in between.
In our observations, bucket list items and goals can fall into many different types of categories such as life (i.e. fall in love) travel (i.e. see the Great Wall of China), experiences (i.e. meet Chuck Norris), health (i.e. loose 15 pounds), financial (i.e. pay off student debt), material (own a house), spiritual (read the bible), seasonal (my summer bucket list) and there are probably a ton of other categories.
This is our humble take on the concept of what a bucket list is/can be but we think that as long as it something you have and if it makes you happy then that’s all that matters. What do you think of our bucket list definition??? We’d love to hear your feedback/comments in the discussion section below…