How Is a Life List like a Bucket List – by Lyn Midnight

Welcome to Life List Club Friday! The best definition of The Life List can be found here. The Life List Club is about connecting, and publicly stating some life goals you’d like to accomplish over the next 12 months (for me that will be by the next 4th of July). It’s about encouraging others in their goals.

Every other Friday, all us Life Listers do a round robin blog hop. We like to spread the love. Today, I’m over on Gene Lempp’s blog and we have the lovely Lyn Midnight here with us…

Great to be here at More Cowbell! Jenny tells me the usual Friday topic is love, but I already talked about that on Emily Moir’s blog for the last Life List blog hop. So today’s post will deviate from the plan. I hope you’ll enjoy it nevertheless…

If you’re like me, you probably have separate lists for many things: favorite movies,
favorite songs, books to read, countries to visit, etc. Apart from this, there are the traditional New Year’s lists: things I’d finally get round to doing before the year’s finished.

The last one went like this:

  1. Buy a professional camera and take a photography course.
  2. Finish the BS manuscript and start querying.
  3. Start an internship at a Publishing house and find a job in the field.
  4. Finally try a Margarita on the beach.
  5. Find someone special and don’t fuck it up this time.

Pardon my French. This is the list for this year, and I have to tell you: I haven’t done a lot of progress so far, and it’s almost September already. The only thing I did was try a Margarita, which I loved, but it wasn’t on the beach either.

Granted, some of these things do not even depend on me at all. Even though I believe that we can attract events in our lives with the power of our minds (see The Secret), it’s not so easy to attract a person who’s perfect for me. I’d have to do a lot more than a rain dance
wearing a coconut bra.

Yet, I can’t help but notice that the first three items are doable and far from impossible.
So why haven’t I done them already? Probably because I’m scared. I’m scared that I’ll fail so bad that I won’t be able to get up and move on with my life. Sometimes it’s so much easier to stay in a sheltered cocoon than get up, go out, and do things.

What’s more, my New Year’s lists have started to look a lot different from what they used to be. I used to write down small goals and try to achieve them in a month. The odds were looking brighter then. But as I started to grow up, I realized: I’d like to do a lot more things than my lifetime could offer. So the pressure of time made me incorporate those bucket list items into my New Year’s lists more and more each year.

Ironically, I have yet to complete an entire New Year’s list.

And my Life List is no different. It has those big dreams that I’ll probably chicken out on again, which infuriates me. Besides, between the end of the world next year (you know
it’s coming) and my 25th birthday, I feel like someone’s putting a gun to my head, asking me to take a chance already and stop whining about it. Or rationalizing it.

To answer the question posted in the title, a Life List is a lot like a Bucket List, because both are meant to wake us up and get us moving. Lots of people never get to complete their bucket lists. And if you’d like to see a couple of crazy old farts doing otherwise, I suggest The Bucket List (2007).

But in order to escape this endless circle of premature failure, I feel like I need a push.
Maybe it’s from my fellow Life List’ers. Maybe it’ll come in November when I’ll  win yet another NaNoWriMo round. After all, NaNo does not expect me to do miracles in one month. It just gives me the necessary little pushes to get me out of my cocoon.

As long as I have those occasional pushes, I’ll believe that I can complete my lists. So
what if my New Year’s lists are ill-devised and too bucket-like? So what if my Life List is too scary to face? Maybe I’ll revise it. Maybe I’ll revise all of my lists.

Either way, I’ll keep making them. Otherwise, my cocoon will become my prison.

Have you been in a cocoon lately? Have you made progress on your list?

About Lyn Midnight

Lyn writes in various genres and formats (fantasy, scifi, poetry), and likes to blog about anything her heart desires over at Lyn Midnight Against the Odds. She is currently working on a scifi novel and managing another blog – The Burning of Innocence – where she posts fantasy flash chapters.

The person behind the handle is a Psychology graduate, and eternal nomad, trying to make her big break somewhere in England. Long live the Queen! And long live our dreams.

Attention: Writers! A writer who would like to become a contributor at The Life List Club, guest posting with us, please contact Marcia Richards: marichards320 AT or Jess Witkins: jessi.witkins AT At this time, the Life List Club accepts one new contributing writer per month. (David N. Walker is the September addition!) Membership is open to all – just state your goals publicly on your site and come see us on Twitter at #LifeListClub.

About Jenny Hansen

Avid seeker of "more"...More words, more creativity, More Cowbell! An extrovert who's terribly fond of silliness. Founding blogger at Writers In The Storm ( Write on!
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31 Responses to How Is a Life List like a Bucket List – by Lyn Midnight

  1. Gene Lempp says:

    Great post, Violeta 🙂


  2. Linda Burke says:

    Perhaps it is fear of success instead of fear of failure? Great article.


  3. lynmidnight says:

    Thank you, Gene and Linda.

    Maybe it’s a little bit of both, success and failure. Isn’t it always. 🙂


  4. catwoods says:

    Great post, Lyn. I followed Cowbell from Gene’s site and now find myself very intrigued by the thought of you raindancing in a coconut top on the beach with a margarita in hand. Maybe you should give it a try! Maybe we all should.

    In any case, I think you might have nailed the essence of the sheltered lives we often lead. “Otherwise, my cocoon will become my prison.”

    Too often we wrap ourselves in security. It’s time to break free and dance with a margarita on the beach. That just might be my birthday present to myself. : )

    Jenny, thanks for hosting Lyn.


  5. Marcia says:

    Sometimes just sharing your fears helps see them more clearly. Then you need a plan that you can stick to. And maybe this post does fit Jenny’s Love theme…love yourself enough to do what will make you happy and move your life forward!


  6. hawleywood40 says:

    Great post Violeta! And in a way, I think it DOES fit Jenny’s love theme. As Marcia said, our lists are about loving ourselves enough to prioritize our goals and dreams and work towards them!


    • lynmidnight says:

      So I CAN follow instructions after all, lol. Oh boy, you girls are too good to me. And you’ve made me feel better about this post. Maybe the key to getting out of the cocoon is trusting myself enough not to screw it up. Wish me luck! ^_^


  7. Jess Witkins says:

    Man, this post could be my inner monologue! I too am standing at that cliff point of “do I jump off and pray I’ve got a parachute, or will I plummet to certain death?” I say let’s go for it. Usually in the end, playing “what if” gets the better of me. I could live with myself if I tried, but failed. I can’t live with myself if I know I never tried at all. I’m here if you need more support. I’m good with the girl talk in the emails. 😉

    P.S. If you do have that rain dance with the coconut shells, I believe we’d ALL like you to blog about it.


    • lynmidnight says:

      LOL! Ok, but don’t expect any pictures…

      Yes, that’s exactly it! I sometimes forget how stupid it is to wait for things to happen and forget to take chances. I mean, OF COURSE it is better to try and fail than to never try at all. In fact, I think it’s on a motivational poster somewhere… In any case, thanks for turning my internal monologue into an intense dialogue. I needed that. :O)


    • Jenny Hansen says:

      Oooooh, a rain dancing blog post…. *eyes glazed, looking off in the distance at the sunset*


  8. Stacy Green says:

    Really enjoyed this post. I deal with major fear of failure, and I know it’s held me back. Having the support of others who understand how tough it is to write and be successful at it is a major help.


    • lynmidnight says:

      Thanks, Stacy! You’re channeling #myWANA there, aren’t you? My fellow Life List’ers are so supportive as well… I feel like I should appreciate the Internet more, lol. After all, how else would I have met such amazing people? *hugs*


  9. Jennie B says:

    Violeta, you are amazing as always and you totally took the thoughts out of my head and put them on paper. Maybe we should agree that we have to take baby steps or else it aint ever gunna happen. Thank you pretty lady. And I totally think that rain dance wouldn’t hurt, if done in the right circumstance 😉


    • lynmidnight says:

      Right? Like in How I Met Your Mother (hey, I believe Ted really made it rain!). Yes, baby steps. It’s like re-enacting toddler-dom. What is more fun than that? 😛

      Thanks for making me smile, Jen! You’re always good at that. ^_^


  10. Enjoyed your post, Lyn. After reading it, I may have to rewrite what I was going to submit for September 9th. I think I may have missed the point a little.


  11. It can be so scary to take any leap. I know how that goes. I’m working on getting over some of my fears right now. 😀


  12. Like that idea. I keep on making New Year’s Resolution–often, the same ones with additions to make them more manageable. I tweak what’s on my list to fit my needs. One year, when I managed to get it right. My entire life had turned 180. Now, I’m still planning on making them. I intend to reflect on what I did last year and what I wanted to accomplish this year.

    I have accomplished the small ones but the big ones I’m having trouble accomplishing. I’ll do it hopefully.


    • Jenny Hansen says:

      Marilag, we ALL have trouble with those big ones, but one of the things I like about Lyn’s post and goal-based programs like Life List Club and ROW80 is that it is OK to restructure your goals so they fit the life you have.


    • lynmidnight says:

      You keep writing down those goals, and you’ve made the first step to achieving them! I agree with Jenny: it’s OK to restructure. ROW80 is also great to be a part of, but I personally LOVE NaNo best. Anyway, thanks for the blog love!


  13. I loved that post. Violeta you rock! I just did a bucket list post recently as well. Always a great topic.


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