By Kelsey Maddox
By now everyone has heard bucket lists: the unfinished business of our lives and what we want to accomplish while we can. Maybe it’s a good time to explore the unfinished bits that we’ve longed to express. There are many benefits from exploring what we’d truly like to do before we “kick the bucket,” as we used to say.
Dreaming is the key in this adventure. Maybe it’s a cup of coffee out on the deck, or a glass of wine at sunset that will stimulate us to return to our dreams. It may be long ago or it may be very much in the forefront of our minds. Getting in touch with our dream is the process of connecting to the life force energy within us that longs to express itself. When you touch it, you intuitively know that whatever you’re tapping into is right for you. You feel it. You know it at a deeper core of self. When was the last time you went on an inner journey of self-discovery? Maybe now is a good time to check into what your heart really desires.
As we age it’s easy to let go of our dreams, especially if our energy begins to wane. Dreaming always expand our nature. However, dreams are important at every stage of life. They compel us to move forward, to experience another aspect of life, whether it’s a language course, a creative expression which hasn’t been tested, a trip to an exotic destination, or simply dreaming of visiting a grandchild you can’t wait to see again. There’s no reason to let go of a dream unless we know that there’s no time or health to live it: it’s better to give up the dream than create suffering. In that case, maybe the dream goes the way of a peaceful death.
Having a bucket list may be good for your spirits on many levels. Having a desire is exciting, and focus on it creates motivation to accomplish it and enjoy satisfaction in the achievement. It also gives you something to share with others that makes you more interesting. Who doesn’t love an aging person who is alive, doing interesting things, and sharing their adventures?
Accomplishing your bucket list can help keep you active mentally and physically. Never discount being engaged and doing. Having a purpose and focus is always energetic. It creates more of everything. Ultimately, having a bucket list of desires to accomplish allows you to dream bigger and see more possibilities each day to express life.
Adventure, creative expression, personal growth, food… whatever your choice—or choices—it’s your life that you’re thinking about. What is your heart longing to express?
I will share with you a personal story to illustrate my point. Some years ago I had a beautiful dream. In my dream was a very dear friend who was 100 at the time. She is sitting in a locomotive with the light flashing on the tracks as the train moves forward. I am sure in the dream as I witness her that she’s beginning her transition to death. She sits with a white cake in her lap and is dressed in all white clothing. As our eyes meet, she expresses delight at seeing me. She sits the cake down and embraces me with a loving hug. Then she whispers in my ear, “Just remember this, my love, life is a recipe for one.”
Kelsey Maddox is the program manager at Vintage House. Reach him at [email protected] or 707.996.0311 x307.