I don’t have a bucket list. It seems to me that making a list like The Bucket List would potentially keep me from being Open to the Universe. It’s too prescriptive, not enough room for Following the Mystery. I do, however, have a tradition of looking for New Experiences that push me out of my Comfort Zone. I make a point of looking for at least one New Experience that takes me out of a Comfort Zone and/or is kind of scary each year.
Composing a Bucket List based on these criteria would be horrible. It would look like a list of everything that terrifies the list maker (public speaking, public nudity, jumping from an airplane), a list of fears. For me, self love does not look like making myself confront a list of fears; that seems kind of mean. We should for sure confront our fears, the ones that jam us up on a regular basis but if you're afraid of clowns, for instance, I am not judging you for not actively working that one out, know what I mean?
I started seeking New Experiences on an annual basis in my mid-30s when it seemed like the predictability of married suburban life eliminated a certain spicy random factor from my interior landscape. Trash on Thursdays, c.s.a. veggie box on Fridays, yoga on Saturdays, dogs groomed on Mondays. I was looking for something that made me a little dizzy, maybe, but dizzy from anticipation or excitement. I am not an extreme athlete of the exterior landscape, so skiing or rock climbing or white water rafting wouldn't do.
I started with a writing workshop. Even though I write because I am literate, I never considered myself a writer-writer. So going to a writing workshop seemed pretty crazy. I had no expectations, it was a lot of fun, and I wrote a pretty good poem. I went to a clothing optional hot springs. I had not been nude with a mix of humanity since pre-school in 1979. The hot springs are amazing, clothed or no, and there is something profoundly healing and corrective to be among other humans in such a natural state. I expected to be uncomfortable…it was uncomfortable, kind of. But it was also a lot of fun. I’ve tried shamanic journeying, crystal healing, bhakti singing, past-life regression, council practice, a native sweat lodge. All expanding, fun, and character building.
I haven’t surrendered to ecstatic dance yet, but I might. I really don’t want to though. Vipassana sounds like a challenge I might work up to one of these days. But instead of being really quiet, what might happen if I was forced to move outward with my Now Moment and in a way that does not involve ecstatic dance?