Today’s post is eight years in the making. Three years ago, I wrote about my list of 100 dreams, and as you’ll read, I stewed about that list for five years before I finally committed it to paper.
I wanted to revisit it because just three years in, I’m pleasantly surprised by how much progress I’ve made. My dream vacations haven’t happened, nor has the quick trip to a spot just a mile from my house, but I have accomplished several of the things on my list—without a plan, or deadlines, or SMART goals. Instead, I captured these things as part of the big picture way I want to live my life. Without revisiting the list, I wouldn’t have realized I was making “progress.” (I’m glad I have the list!)
I’d encourage you to go back and visit the original post, about the inspiration for the list—the why and the how. Then, after you’ve read it, come back here for today’s update.
As I review my list, I’ve realized how many of its goals aren’t things that can ever be finished, not once-and-for-all: they’re more about mindset than checking a box. I planted a garden bed bursting with tulips—and then we moved. I went away for a girls’ weekend (several, actually) but I hope there are many more in my future. I’ve visited heaps of indie bookstores, yet will visit a dozen more new ones this year (hurray!). I strive to support others in their work in tangible, practical ways, and that’s not going to stop.
I decided to cross these things off the list anyway.
I’ve made serious progress on a few goals (chopsticks! the park system! zinnias!) but am leaving those for now.
After three years, there were only a few things on my list that I wanted to edit. I no longer intend to steward a Little Free Library in the near future, but I have made filling up my little neighborhood libraries with books part of my regular routine. I’m thinking about swapping out the pull-up for a pistol. And “become an expert at something”—why so vague, 2015 Anne?
Thanks for stopping to mark a few accomplishments with me today (like, I actually wrote two books!). If this sounds like fun, would you consider making your own list?
Please share three dreams, big or small, in the comments—but don’t stop there. I highly encourage you to go for the full one hundred. There’s something about forcing your brain to come up with that long list that pulls out what’s important to you, both big and small.
- Host dinner parties. Or start/join a supper club.
Steward a Little Free Library.
- Take art classes.
Go away for a girls’ weekend.
- Get really familiar with our local parks system. I want to know the trails like the back of my hand.
- Learn to use chopsticks. (I try, but I am terrible.)
Plant a garden bursting with tulips.
- And a garden bed spilling over with zinnias.
- Find and perfect a signature dish.
- Learn to dance (ballroom, swing, I don’t even know).
- Do a pull-up.
- Visit the Pacific Northwest with the kids.
- And the California coast with the kids.
- Visit the Abbey of Gethsemani (local to us, but we’ve never been).
- And Mammoth Cave with the kids (also local, but I haven’t been since I was a kid).
- Revisit the International Wine Festival in Budapest (Will and I just happened to be in town for this the last time we were in Europe, and it was magical).
Visit a ton of indie bookstores: Powell’s, Parnassus, the Little Bookstore of Big Stone Gap, and any others we happen to be near or can manage to get to.
- Take a small town road trip (definitely inspired by our recent experience).
- Visit the Grand Canyon.
- And at least five other national parks. (I’ve only been to Mt. Rainer …)
- Take the kids to Europe.
- Take an architecture tour in Barcelona.
- Write a few real book reviews. (I write about books a lot, but I rarely write formal reviews.)
- Develop stellar interview skills.
Go on a writing retreator take a formal writing class. Write some poetry as a skill-building exercise. Write a nonfiction book.
- And a novel.
- Write a long-form piece and publish it somewhere.
- Become an expert at something.
Learn to take great photos. And edit them. Support others in their work in tangible, practical ways.
Have you ever made a list of 100 dreams? What are three things on YOUR list? Any advice for me or the newbie list-makers? Can you help me finally master chopsticks? Please tell us all about it in comments below.