Kick the Bucket List

Ready to head out and check things off the bucket list you’ve been building for the decades of your working life? Not so fast!

For some, retirement is seen as a time to go globe-trotting or embark on life-changing adventures. But that may not always lead to lasting happiness.

For many seniors, the bucket list has become the ultimate celebration of aging. Healthier, heartier and richer than generations of retirees before them, they’re spending their golden years chasing once-in-a-lifetime adventures—sky diving from 13,000 feet, hiking the Great Wall of China, swimming with sharks or skiing the Andes.

For them, it’s the chance to do things they put off for years while working and caring for family, and to make the most of the moments they have remaining. What’s not to love about a life of dream vacations and big thrills? Unfortunately, quite a bit.

But in time, many finally see a bucket list as an antidote devoid of any enduring communion with family or friends. It doesn’t give us any roles as a guide or mentor that had been so satisfying earlier in life. We can feel like spectators to the lives and locales of others, collecting hundreds of photos that were destined to sit unseen in the myriad flash drives we bring home.

It may be time to kick the bucket list to the curb.

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