101 Things in 1001 Days

Some of you will remember my 101 Things to do in 1001 Days challenge, which I started way back at the start of 2009 in Estonia, and ended a few days before my 30th birthday last year.

For those of you who don’t, the idea is that you come up with 101 things you want to do in the next 1001 days, and aim to check them all off your list. The goals must be specific, not vague – things that you can confidently check off the list as having completed. (For example – instead of “get fit”, find measurable ways of achieving that, like “go to the gym 3 times a week for 3 months”, or “go to an exercise class”.)

Well, it’s time to do it again. That list changed my life. A bucket list doesn’t work for me, because I have no deadline to push me into action. This challenge motivates me to get up and do something instead of letting the days of inactivity turn into weeks, and the weeks turn into months. I confess, that’s what’s been happening lately, and I don’t like it. If you read this post, which I wrote at the end of my original 101 Days experiment, you’ll see just how much I managed to get done because of it. My achievements of late have been minimal. It’s time to get back on track and live life to the full once again!

I completed 84 of my original 101 challenges. My new list contains some (but not all) of the uncompleted ones, and also a few that I did complete and want to do again. Some of the challenges on the list are huge and will require lots of planning and budgeting. Some are seemingly small but important to me nonetheless. Most are brand new experiences, and some are things I’ve done before but want to make sure I do again.

I’m excited to be setting out on this challenge again, because it did amazing things for me last time. I’m full of energy and enthusiasm just from making the list!

So, here we go! I have 8 broad, general goals. They are:

Travel, travel, travel.
Take better care of myself.
Keep learning, improving my general knowledge, and exercising my brain.
Try new things.
Enjoy life.
Write more.
Be a better, nicer, more considerate person.
Do things that scare me.

Here’s how I plan to achieve them: the new list!

Start date: December 29, 2012
Finish date: September 26, 2015

Travel, travel, travel (15)

1. Visit another UNESCO World Heritage Site.

2. Take an unplanned, spur-of-the-moment trip.

3. Visit Russia.

4. Throw tomatoes at La Tomatina.

5. Visit Area 51.

6. Visit Stonehenge.

7. See the Northern Lights.

8. Visit another continent (other than North America, Europe, and Asia).

9. Visit the birthplace or grave of a cultural icon.

10. Ride an elephant.

11. Do some more Couchsurfing.

12. Visit a ghost town.

13. Visit/travel in at least 10 countries.

14. Take a road trip.

15. Get an Irish passport.

Take better care of myself (14)

16. Go hiking.

17. Buy a bicycle.

18. Fast for 3 days.

19. Stop smoking.

20. Lose 3 stone.

21. Get a massage.

22. Complete the 30 Day Shred.

23. Make a budget.

24. Complete a 200 sit-ups challenge.

25. Take a kick-boxing class.

26. Go to bed before midnight every night for a week.

27. Get up early and eat a healthy breakfast every day for a week.

28. Put £10 (or equivalent) into savings for every goal I check off my list.

29. Get laser eye surgery.

Keep learning, improving my general knowledge, and exercising my brain (16)

30. Get a new qualification.

31. Watch at least 10 documentaries.

32. Read at least 50 books.

33. Take a cooking class.

34. Take an interesting online course just for fun.

35. See a play in a theatre.

36. Learn to identify all the countries on a map.

37. Choose 10 countries and watch a movie from each of them.

38. Learn to cook a meal from each of 5 different countries.

39. Visit at least 5 museums I haven’t been to before.

40. Learn how to use 20 more commands/shortcuts/functions on my Macbook.

41. Ask friends to name one favourite music album they think I should listen to, and then listen to all the recommendations I get.

42. Ask friends to name one movie they think I need to watch, and then watch all the recommendations I get.

43. Become fluent in French (pass a high-level DELF exam).

44. Go to a photography exhibition.

45. Reach a basic conversational level in a third language.

Try new things (11)

46. Be a movie extra.

47. Participate in Geocaching.

48. Drive a motorcycle.

49. Perfect a magic trick.

50. Zip line.

51. Learn how to juggle.

52. Get a manicure.

53. See a Broadway show.

54. Do one of those ‘extreme’ things I’ve always wanted to do, like skydiving or a bungee jump.

55. Swim with dolphins.

56. Scuba dive.

Enjoy life (20)

57. Kiss at midnight on  New Year’s Eve.

58. Take a picture for each letter of the alphabet.

59. Order the lobster.

60. Build a sandcastle.

61. Get up and go for a walk as the sun rises.

62. Assemble a list of my all-time favorite quotes.

63. Go down a water slide.

64. Eat at one of the world’s best restaurants.

65. Attend a music festival.

66. Memorise a favourite poem.

67. Document “A Day In My Life” in photos.

68. Buy myself flowers.

69. Take a moonlit walk on a beach.

70. Make playlists of songs for running, relaxing, and parties.

71. Ride a rollercoaster.

72. Go to a market.

73. Make a snowman.

74. Go to at least 5 live music shows.

75. Have a picnic.

76. Host a board games night.

Write more (8)

77. Answer the ‘50 questions that will free your mind‘.

78. Submit at least 10 articles for publication somewhere.

79. Enter a writing contest.

80. Write a poem that I actually let others read.

81. Comment on 50 different blogs.

82. Write a book in a month (NaNoWriMo).

83. Write a blog post every day for a month (Nabloplomo).

84. Take a magazine or travel writing course.

Be a better, nicer, more considerate person (11)

85. Volunteer.

86. Help someone without being asked.

87. Don’t complain about anything for a week.

88. Write a letter to someone I admire.

89. Buy a meal for a homeless person.

90. Register and release 10 books through bookcrossing.com.

91. Send flowers anonymously to someone who needs cheering up.

92. Sponsor a child.

93. Give a sincere compliment every day for a month.

94. Write and mail  a letter or card to someone in my family every week for 3 months.

95. Donate £10 (or equivalent) to charity for every uncompleted task on my list.

Do things that scare me (6)

96. Ask a guy out on a date.

97. Cook dinner for a group of friends.

98. Say ‘no’ to 5 things I don’t want to do, but would normally agree to just to keep people happy.

99. Join a writing group despite my fear of embarrassment or criticism.

100. Speak in front of an audience.

101. Invite a complete stranger to go for dinner or coffee.


8 thoughts on “101 Things in 1001 Days

  1. Becs says:

    I love that you are doing this again. I may steal some of your ‘take better care of myself’ items to make as my non-New Years Resolutions.
    Can I ask….what is geocaching?

  2. actthree says:

    What a delightful and insightful list – and, if you were so inclined, we would love to help you with a few:

    #11 (does a queen size bed in your own room count?)
    #39 (Women’s Rights National Historical Park, Seneca Falls, NY
    Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, NY
    Glen H. Curtis Museum, Hammonsport, NY
    Museum of the Earth, Ithaca, NY
    and many other odd, peculiar or quaint local museums)
    #48 (courtesy of my brother… a 1972 Norton)
    #53 (in NY City ….although it does involve a 4 hour road trip)
    #61 (watch the sun rise over Cayuga Lake, and later that day watch
    it set over Seneca Lake)
    #65 (Grassroots Festival of Music and Dance, Trumansburg, NY —
    quite possibly the last of the “Woodstockesque” festivals
    in NY state).
    #100 [and my favorite] – a ” how-to” presentation by a young woman who has consistently and successfully, with grace and courage (…and style, flare and panache) grown and matured by everything life has presented.

    Seriously, when you are ready, you need to take your story on the road.

    As always, Jane

  3. Hallo! I’m a new(ish) reader. Got here by googling blogs about teaching in Korea and ended up loving your writing style. This list is brilliant-hope you don’t mind that I stole one or two goals for my own 101/1001 :-)

    Good luck with finishing!

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