Planning Life With A Bucket List


Disneyland in Orlando is fantastic. Imagine the atmosphere of half million people who are on holiday at any one time in Orlando and about half of them are visiting a Disney attraction. It is the home of “Imagineering” and “Innovention” and …. fun. My first visit, 40 years ago, was by accident and then 4 subsequent visits took place with about two years of planning for each one. In other words, Disneyland was on my “Bucket List” and, I might add, it still is as I intend to go again.

 What is a “Bucket List” and its  Popularisation

The film of the same name is about two terminally ill men who escape from a cancer ward and head off on a road trip with a wish list of to-dos before they die, starring Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson. It is worth a viewing and it went a long way to make the expression "Bucket List" become part of our every-day language.

In a nutshell it is a list of:

●  Things you want to do or experience

●  Places you want to go

●  And, people you would like to meet

So why Bucket List? I think you have guessed it, because it is your personal GOALS list you wish to do before you die or “kick the bucket”.

The Value of a Bucket List?

I have said before that research has shown that happiness comes from the journey towards your goal. Once you achieve the goal – celebrate it and set another one so that the journey of happiness continues. There is lots of fun in planning and anticipating the goal. Part of the process is visualising the end result – imagine the positive emotion that comes from this. No wonder happiness is the end result.

It is really important to have balanced goals because really you are “designing your life”. Your life is your responsibility We cannot wait for the right moment to experience life. We have to create the right moments and experience life.

Here are a few more advantages of creating your Bucket List:

●  Life’s Purpose – what you want out of life is threaded throughout your goals (Bucket List)

●  Focus – having written goals which you visit daily helps you focus your life

●  Direction – you direct and create your life. Your list will provide re-invigoration and motivation

●  You build your own legacy and how you would like to be remembered.

●  Remember by doing goals you attract towards you what you want.

In working with goals remember that they can be adjusted as we go along in life. So always have a method of reviewing your bucket list and adding, deleting or adjusting them. One more thing – always reward yourself as you achieve any goal.

My Personal Involvement With Visiting Disney in Florida

Nearly 40 years ago now, when I was mostly separated by divorce from my three (late) daughters, I had a dream that some time after they had all turned 18 I would take them all to Disney World in Orlando, Florida, USA.  That of course was never to be.  The twins had just turned 19 and my youngest daughter’s 16th birthday was the very next day after their murder.

I was (and am) into goals and planned for two years with my two children from my second marriage and my wife Sandra. We visited Orlando twice – two years apart – we all loved the planning process and of course the Disney experience itself.  It’s something we have all remembered fondly and vividly (helped by reviewing video footage taken).

Now 20 years after that trip, again we have been lucky enough to make this journey with our daughter, her husband and 3 young children aged 6, 4 and 2.  Over in USA we met up with our son-in-law’s father and his American wife – all adding to the excitement of the Family Holiday. We spent 10 full days at the Disney Theme Parks in Orlando.

Now we are planning our next visit – yes, it’s on our Bucket List again.

Is It For You?

You may think that you’re not a particular fan of theme parks.  Sandra thought that on our first trip but she was very quickly made a “convert”.  Truly, it’s not all for kids – there is much that is educational and fun for adults.  Also, it’s not all about roller coasters.  Everything is done so well and so professionally.  It’s a stimulating and enriching experience, with something for everyone.

Just to give you an idea – here are some figures. There are 17 Million annually visiting Disney Theme Parks in Orlando. Roughly 50,000 per day with peak periods up to 150,000 per day. The parks employ 62,000 people. And here is the really interesting figure – for every 2 children under 14 there are 5 adults. Definitely not just for kids!  By the way, at no stage did we feel overwhelmed by crowds – these Parks are huge and the people running and managing them are true professionals in people management.

Some Details and a Taste

Let me tell you a bit about this trip.  By planning well in advance we were able to secure very reasonable air fares.  Through various organisations we know, we were also able to secure extremely economical, and at the same time very comfortable, accommodation, within easy driving distance of the Disney World Theme Parks – The Magic Kingdom, EPCOT Centre, Hollywood Studios and Animal Kingdom.  Google these 4 Disney Parks to get an idea of what is on offer. We hired a car but most accommodation places have free daily shuttles going to the Parks.

Hiring a vehicle?  Easy, with so many hire car companies operating, and all are vying competitively for your business.  No need to be concerned about driving on “the other side” of the road – it comes easily and with all vehicles outfitted with a Satellite Navigator – very simple. If you don’t want to drive then most accommodation places have free shuttles going to the Parks.  Food in America is very reasonably priced.

And the Theme Park Tickets ….. so many possible ticket combinations are on offer.  Take care who you buy your tickets from as we have heard there are scams.  We used a reliable, discount place whose website is

The ingenuity, imagineering and innovention are breathtaking. This is epitomised in my favourite ride which is a simulation of a ride that you design yourself.

Here’s a taste of 3 different experiences

Soarin’ Epcot

Impressions de France  

Liberty Belle Steam Boat Ride, Magic Kingdom

I’ll leave the investigative work to you, however if you would like to talk to me about any aspect of our trip, or ask for any tips, please feel free to contact me by phone or by email.

So, do I want you to go to Disney in Orlando? Too right I do. Have you noticed the theme in this Mind Matters News? Create your own Happiness by designing your own goals which leads to balance in your life with a Lifes’ Purpose. In other words come and do my 4/5 day live-in Seminar called CHI – Creating Happiness Intentionally.

All the best


"Your gift from God is your potential – Your gift to God is to use it."


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