The Alternative Bucket List – 75 things to try that you wouldn’t normally do

You know those bucket list type thingies that everyone writes these days? Well they all seem to contain the same activities and once you’ve read one you have read them all. Coming up with ideas for a bucket list can be challenging – so I’m going to offer a slightly different take on this and write one that involves a mixture of worthwhile activities and some small silly things to keep yourself entertained when you get bored.

So this is my alternative bucket list and if you manage complete all 75 of these activities, your life will take on a whole new form of awesomeness!

1. Take a day off work

I think everyone has days where they can’t face going to work. So if you just can’t face going in for whatever reason then allow yourself to have a sick day. You’ll feel better for it.

2. Have a conversation with your pets

Now I know they can’t answer back and they probably have no concept of what you’re saying, but cats and dogs are good at empathising and sensing emotions. Think of it like mini-therapy.

3. Write a strongly worded email

I have only done this once and I didn’t even get a reply but it sure felt good at the time. You never know, you may even get a free coupon out of it.

4. Stuff yourself silly with your favourite junk food

Just have a day where you go nuts and gorge on your favourite foods. It won’t make a difference to your waistline if done sparingly and the endorphin rush will put you in a good mood.

5. Say yes to everything for 24 hours

Embrace your inner ‘yes man’ and agree to do anything that is asked of you, say yes to any questions and refuse to say no for 24 hours. See what happens.

6. Go to the cinema by yourself

The ultimate taboo, well socially anyway. Yet at least you have total control over what you are seeing and nobody will even notice you’re by yourself anyway.

7. Allow yourself to be stopped by the clipboard people

You know those crazy people that stand in city centres waiting to pounce on you with a demand for your signature? Stop for once and see what they actually want. You never know, it could be something you believe in.

8. Skip town for a few days

If you have a few days free then why not just go somewhere and de-stress of a while. Maybe take someone with you and rent out a cabin or visit a new place for a change of scenery.

9. Ask your biggest crush out on a date

If you like someone and they don’t know about it, what are you doing? There is rarely a bad reason for not pursuing someone you want, regardless of what you are led to believe.

10. Spend a whole day in your pants

Spending a whole day in your pants (underwear) is extremely satisfying and that is all I need to say on the matter.

11. Go commando

Alternatively simply go about your daily business without any underwear. You’ll save on washing and it’s surprisingly pleasant, if a little chilly in the winter.

12. Tell your boss to stop bothering you

Providing your boss is at least somewhat competent at their job they shouldn’t mind too much if you stand up to them. They are human too and make just as many mistakes as the rest of us, so if you feel the need to speak up, go for it.

13. Give a long lost friend a call

If you have a good friend who you haven’t seen in over 6 months, give them a call and arrange a meet up. You’ll make two people happier with one simple action.

14. Order a meal in a restaurant that you’ve never heard of

This can mean both a type of food you’ve never heard of or an actual restaurant that’s new to you. Either way you’ll be eating a food you won’t be that familiar with and may even find a new favourite dish.

15. Give a homeless person a chocolate bar

Most of us run a mile when someone begs us for money simply because we can’t be sure they will use it for good. Avoid this by giving them a bit of food instead. Regardless of any potential drug/alcohol habit, they will appreciate it.

16. Try to wind up a cold caller

Nobody likes a cold caller, so turn the tables on them by firstly playing along and then try to annoy them so much they actually hang up on you.

17. Listen to a whole album by an artist you dislike

I’m not suggesting you go out and buy something, but borrow from a friend or go on YouTube and see if there is anything about this artist that can redeem them in your eyes (or ears).

18. Ask your hairdresser to pick a hairstyle for you

In an act that is truly daring and probably foolish, just ask them to pick a style for you and brace yourself for the results.

19. Throw a rolled up sock at someone’s head

This works because you cannot cause actual harm but cleanly connecting with the back of someone’s head with a rolled up sock is very satisfying. Extra points if you were wearing it seconds before.

20. Give a stranger a compliment

Tell a girl/guy that they are cute or if you don’t feel that daring compliment them on an item of clothing or maybe their haircut. You’ll make their day I promise.

21. Go swimming in the sea

Most of us, after a certain age anyway refuse to go in the water when we’re at the beach. Embrace your inner child and just make a run for it splashing everywhere as you go. Screaming is optional.

22. Play the lottery

Why not? You might win something, and if you do please remember who gave you the idea! J

23. Apply for a job that is way above your experience level

You have nothing to lose by doing this and you may even get an unexpected job interview from it.

24. Give up watching television

It’s okay to watch your favourite shows on DVD or on your laptop but having your TV on in the background is a time waster so consider leaving it turned off when not needed.

25. Give up Facebook

This one is a tough one as it is firmly integrated in our everyday lives. Try giving it up for 1 week and see what happens. Maybe have 1 week a month that is Facebook free and you’ll definitely feel better about yourself.

26. Stay awake all night

If you aren’t doing anything in particular the next day, try staying awake all night. It’s a strange feeling the first time you do it and if you’re feeling particularly hardcore, stay awake until bedtime the following evening.

27. Sign a sponsorship form

The next time one of your friends or colleagues is doing something for charity; consider signing up and sponsoring them. Go that extra mile and make the highest donation while you’re at it.

28. Pick up a (big) spider and see what happens

I have done this once before and I was surprised as to how easy it was, sadly I didn’t conquer my dislike for the things and I haven’t done it since.

29. Buy something really stupid from eBay

Find the stupidest novelty item that is within budget and just buy the thing. Warning, it can be quite addictive.

30. Go for a long walk in the rain

Oddly going for a walk in the rain when we actually want to get wet, is quite good fun. Get your waterproofs on though.

31. Try to go a whole day without speaking to anyone

This may sound a bit antisocial but having attempted a couple of times, it is actually very hard to do. The reward for this is at the end of the day you won’t have any stress.

32. Party until sunrise

If you are still of ‘partying’ age then go mad and do an all-nighter. If you are a bit too mature for such nonsense then you can just do number 26.

33. Make a new friend at work

I’m sure you can think of a few people at your job that you hardly speak to. Go ahead and get to know them.

34. Introduce yourself to someone famous

Everyone at some time in their lives will come face to face with someone famous. So don’t get all nervous and go introduce yourself, you may be surprised as to how polite and welcoming this person actually is.

35. Abstaining from any alcohol or drugs

Do you drink? Smoke? Take a lot of prescription medicine for small ailments? Try going without for a short while and see if you actually begin to feel better.

36. Try to get a security guard to follow you

Next time you’re in a shopping mall, make eye contact with a security guard and look guilty. See if you can get them to follow you around. Don’t do this in your local mall though, try out of town.

37. Pretend to be a tourist for a day

How much do you really know about your hometown? Have you experienced everything it has to offer? Spend a day visiting all the tourist attractions for the novelty factor.

38. Get yourself into trouble and talk your way out of it

Nothing illegal or harmful to another person obviously but next time you find yourself in a spot of bother, test out your smooth talking and see where it takes you.

39. Have a movie day

This can go in hand with entries 1, 4 and 10. Get cosy and watch a load of films back to back.

40. Buy an item of clothing you have never worn before

Go a little out of your comfort zone and buy something that wouldn’t normally fit your personality. Experiment with styles and colours too.

41. Join a YouTube argument and wind everyone up

Everyone loves a good YouTube video and a comment war just adds the icing on the cake. If you have an account, feel free to mock and troll those who take this internet thing way too seriously. Just remember not to attack anyone personally or use foul and abusive language.

42. Tell someone close to you how awesome they are

This goes for your family, friends, partner or anyone you know that just deserves a pat on the back.

43. Go camping… in your back garden

I am not sure if anyone does this over the age of 12, but why the hell not?

44. Wake up an hour earlier, be productive

If you’re not an early riser this can be tricky but give it a go. That extra hour can be used to have a workout, do some work, practice a skill or maybe some writing.

45. Sell your phone and buy a cheaper model

Do we really need the latest iPhone 5? Is the Samsung Galaxy s3 worth it if you have the previous model? I still use the phone I had 2 years ago and I have no need to upgrade. If it breaks I’ll buy it again as it does everything a phone needs to.

46. Start a blog

A blog is probably the modern day equivalent of a diary and a good way to make a passive income in the future. If you have any advice or tips that you think you can pass on, give it a try.

47. If you have a blog, create another one

I really want to create a dedicated Health & Fitness website and one day a travel blog. Is there anything else that you are passionate about that could do with its own platform?

48. See how many movie quotes you can slip into conversation before someone notices

This is for the movie buffs out there. You can try this with song lyrics too and it’s a fun thing to try with your friends to see how quickly they catch on.

49. Next time you meet a stranger, pretend to be foreign

This has no real worth apart from mild self-amusement but it’s a handy skill to have when approached by those pesky clipboard people in number 7.

50. Donate a percentage of your wages to charity

Within your company there should be an option to donate an hours wage or so to a good cause so see if you can set something up.

51. Climb a mountain

Don’t be silly, I’m not asking you to crawl up Everest but instead try something that any fit person can have a go at. Mount Fuji and Kilimanjaro are two of the most popular and while they are very demanding, will prove to be a very rewarding experience.

cloudy mountains

52. Buy tickets to a live event

There is nothing better than going to a gig, especially if you haven’t been in ages. Just look at upcoming events at your local venues and purchase something impulsively. You won’t regret it.

53. Religious or not, read up about an opposing belief

The best and healthiest way to have a belief is to constantly challenge it. This will either open your eyes to what else could be out there, or alternatively it could strengthen your current views. Either way, only good things can happen.

54. Face the day without any grooming

Man or woman, just wake up, whack on some clothes and face the day as nature intended. It’s good sometimes to not worry about how you look.

55. Sing in the shower

This can feel weird if you have never done it before, so when you have the house to yourself, just open up those lungs and belt something out. You’ll feel equal parts silly and free.

56. Ask a question to someone that inspires you

Find anyone who inspires you and fire them an email asking whatever comes to mind. You’ll be surprised at how often this person actually responds to their fans and it will definitely make your day.

57. Befriend someone who shares your name

Go on Facebook and do a search for someone with the same name as you. Message them telling them how awesome their name is. It’s a silly thing to do, but it will put a smile on their face. The more obscure the name, the better.

58. Wear a suit for the sake of it

Weddings, funerals and boring jobs aside we rarely ever need to wear a suit, so go ahead and just walk about town wearing one. I bet you suddenly feel very important!

59. Volunteer for a worthy cause

It doesn’t matter if it is a charity organisation or just helping out within your local community. It’s good to do something and not expect anything in return.

60. If you ever have a reasonable opportunity, go skinny dipping

I think everyone has at least one opportunity to do this in their lives so if your chance hasn’t arrived yet… just go and make it happen! Use your common sense though. Telling the police that ‘the internet made me do it’ won’t really work.

skinny dip

61. Have a bonfire

It seems as though nobody has bonfires these days, especially round my way so if you have a lot of old rubbish in the garden, get rid of it by having a little fire. Like with the idea above, common sense should be used here.

62. Sign up for a short course

Boost your CV or just take on a new hobby by enrolling on a short course. Regardless of where you live, there will be a local university or college that offers these so sign up for something fun.

63. Play a practical joke on someone

Don’t just wait for April 1st! Find a good friend who you know is receptive to a bit of fun and try to think up a harmless prank you can play on them. Be warned though, there is a good chance they will want their revenge!

64. Get a tattoo

Tap into your rebellious nature by getting yourself a tattoo. Don’t just follow the crowd or pick something spur of the moment as these things are permanent. Have a think about it and get something that means something to you.

65. Fall asleep in public

Park bench, nightclub, beach, on the bus, use your imagination and have a kip in public. It’s usually best to do this in the summer and make sure you wear nice clothes or someone may mistake you for a hobo!

66. Film yourself sleeping

The operative word here is ‘yourself’ and not anyone else. Set up a camera and film yourself sleeping at night as it will be interesting to see if you sleep like a dead weight or if you toss and turn all night. Extra points for if you discover you’re a sleepwalker.

67. Memorise a good joke. Tell it.

When pressured, most of us can’t remember a good joke to tell so pre-empt this by memorising one that you will always have on hand for any situation.

68. Cook a nice meal for someone who doesn’t expect it

Do something unexpected for a loved one and cook them something special one night. If that person usually does the cooking themselves this simple act will brighten up their whole day.

69. Do something your friends would mock you for

This depends on the type of friends you have and their sense of humour, but intentionally do something that they would mock you for and keep it up for as long as possible. Maybe wear a silly hat out in public or confess an admiration for Justin Bieber.

70. If you have a particular skill, consider teaching/coaching

Earn some extra money by passing on knowledge about a passion of yours. You never know, if things pick up you may even be able to start earning a living full time.

71. Write down your feelings/start a diary

If you aren’t a blogger or are used to writing down your thoughts then try doing this and I promise you that you will feel so much better about yourself. Your stress levels will also drop just by getting emotions off your chest.

72. Have a good cry about something

Go on; watch a sad film or whatever else might be a trigger for some tears. I think everyone should cry at least once a year as like the entry above, it is very good for releasing pent up stress and negative emotion.

73. Invent a new meal

Next time you plan to cook something, just round up as many different foods, sauces and ingredients as possible and make your own Frankenstein creation. It will probably look awful but no doubt it will taste bloody good.

74. Delete half your Facebook friends

Well science says that our evolved monkey brains can only handle no more than 150 relationships so I’m guessing you have more Facebook friends than that? If so go ahead and delete anyone who you haven’t seen in the last year or just don’t really like. (There’s bound to be a few).

75. Write a list of 75 random activities that you don’t normally do

Why the hell not?

 

So which of these are you going to try today?

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About Jamie

Jamie is a guitar teacher and writer who hates the typical 9-5 existence. After quitting his job to enter the world of guitar tuition, he created this blog to document his thoughts and struggles as he takes on societies norms armed with nothing more than his cheeky wit and undeniable charm - Give his Facebook page a like, add him on Twitter or follow his Google+ page and he will repay you with even more awesome words!

Comments

  1. Love this! I’ve done 52 of these things. It may have been because there was a time when I tried to really stretch my comfort zone so I would think of something crazy each day to do in order to shock myself out of the mundane life I was living. A few of these things actually stuck and I do them daily, like compliment a stranger.

    This is an awesome list. There is no reason people should be board if they can have something new, fun, and challenging to do everyday. Really good stuff!.
    Ralph recently posted..How To Wake Up Early Without Hating It : My 3 A.M. ExperimentMy Profile

    • 52 is pretty good. I think that’s more than most! It’s always good to try new things, regardless of how silly or pointless they may seem. Thanks for commenting.

  2. These are mostly good ideas… Unfortunately I’ve already done them all. Some were interesting.. For the diary thing I created a dream journal a while ago. Try that if you’re someone who remembers their dreams. The results get pretty crazy over a period of time.

    I think I might start a blog though if I can figure out how to make money with it. Keep up the good work Jamie!

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