Commitment List

I’m currently sitting in one of my favourite places to go. It’s an alpine hotel with a restaurant and pub downstairs. About an hour outside of Melbourne. It’s surrounded by idyllic scenery; there’s a balcony with breathtaking views of the mountains. It seems a lot like the European alps. You can sense the river nearby as well. Just ate a Parmigiana with nachos on top and could hardly be more full. I’m even thinking of having my first drink in over two months. Just for a change. The chances it will be regrettable are pretty high, but you never know, maybe I’ve come to enjoy drinking.

As someone that likes to always to be rewriting my goals, a simple idea occurred to me yesterday. It’s almost simple to the point of obviousness, or maybe it’s simple to the point of convenience (or maybe it’s just not good). You be the judge.

The term “bucket list” has become quite commonplace. The idea is good because it does just what it’s supposed to in very straight forward fashion. It A) forces you to think about what you would like to do before you die, and B) it records what you decide so that you have a decent chance of getting it done. My idea is very similar. Basically you write a list of the things you’d like to do whilst you have are “free” to do so. Especially before you get married or make a big commitment such as a mortgage or business venture. These things aren’t impossible to back out of but you can save yourself a lot of time, headache and heartache by entering into them when you’re most ready.

What you have to do is think of all the things you’d want to do before you “settle” and then write them down. The list can and should change to reflect your deeply held and sincere values. I hope that you’re stable enough in your ambitions to accomplish some of it though, especially if you are considering entering a lifelong commitment. Even if you don’t get any of it done at least you’ll know that it really wasn’t meant to be.

The most obvious and exciting things are the “live life to the fullest” items. Things like travel or going skydiving. Or maybe what you really want to do is get a degree or get well on your way to your dream job. I’d encourage you to “think big” in these parts. Personally, travel is my single greatest passion in life. So travel-related goals are heavily represented in my list.

It’s not all about carpe diem though. I’m a firm believer in constant self-development. Once you’re in a relationship, to some extent your capability of growing or changing is limited. You don’t have the freedom of navigation to explore who you are and what you want. It can might even be a little unfair on your partner. It seems to me that people who end up together often have “damage” or “baggage” which matches up nicely with each others’ . Being single is the best time to try and heal some wounds, for the good of your future kids. I’d encourage you to add some “inner life” goals to your list as well, if nothing else than to remind you that they matter too.

Part of being free is being able to explore, learn and try whatever we want. Part of learning about ourselves is learning who we would be good with or what we want to spend our time doing. The wiser your life choices the better your later life will be. The more freely you explore the more you learn about your self and, arguably ,the better life choices you will make.

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