Do you have a list of things to do before you’re 40? New research suggests that more and more people are creating a type of bucket list for each life period, detailing exactly what they’d like to cross off. I’m all for motivating myself with lists and targets, and it seems many of use want the same things – here’s the 10 most-common things to do before you’re 40.
1. Learn Not to Care
Okay, so this one sounds a little odd, but the theory is right, so this is one of the things to try before you're 40. Everyone needs to learn not to care what other people think of you, and instead to reflect on what you think of them. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t be a nice person, just that if you love that bright orange coat, who cares if no-one else does?! And if you want a family holiday somewhere crazy, that’s fine too. Other people’s judgments of your life are useless, but your perceptions of them aren’t.
2. Change Your Hair Color
How many hair colors have you rocked during your life? My photo album currently has snaps of me with blonde hair, ginger hair, red hair, brown hair, black hair, pink hair, green hair and blue streaks. Some look crazy. Some were perfect for that night, and never seen again. But if your hair is always the same, try mixing it up. You might love the results!
3. Host a Proper Dinner Party
Downton Abbey is probably to blame for this one: there has been a huge rise in sales of traditional tea-sets, and it seems most people want more tea parties, too. Buy a gorgeous tea dress, wear pearls, invite the girls round and enjoy chocolate mousse made in fancy cups. It’ll be great fun, and the photographs will have you smiling for years.
4. Be Brave
Push yourself outside of your comfort zone. Huge numbers of people admitted to wanting to skinny dip – somewhere warm and private, I hope! – while many others want to eat out in a fancy restaurant on their own. Whatever you’ve been desperate to do, schedule it now. Be brave, and seize the moment!
5. Find Your Signature Style
It seems your signature style will be around forever. White dress and peroxide hair? Marilyn Monroe. Classic retro glamour? Audrey Hepburn. Go shopping and find the style that suits you the best. That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take risks – fashion risks are fun, and keep things fresh, but it’ll give you confidence whenever you are dressed like you. If you are stuck for ideas, try letting shopping advisors help you pick out items you’d never have chosen before, or getting your colors read.
6. Visit Your Dream Destination
If you had one holiday left, where would you go? What culture would you love to experience first hand, what language makes you weak at the knees? Whether it’s a European paradise or further afield, book a holiday to the place you’ve always wanted to go. Even if it takes you a while to save, it’ll be worth it. Japan, China, Rio and Burma are all common fantasy locations, and they are well worth the wait.
7. Have a Crazy Weekend
For just one weekend, forget everything you normally do. Drop pets and children off with their grandparents, ignore the housework and record your favorite shows… this weekend is going to be wild. Go and see a show in Las Vegas or hit the tarmac on a once-in-a-lifetime road trip – the choice is yours, but make it a weekend you’ll never forget.
8. Create Your Dream Home
Your home should be the best place in the world. It should be covered in patterns, prints, colors and items that you love, and feel instantly welcoming whenever you are there. So why is decorating so difficult?! For once, forget what the interior magazines say, and don’t worry about future buyers. Decorate your home with confidence, and cover it in your style. You’ll wish you did it years ago.
9. Be Proud of Yourself
When was the last time you were really proud of yourself? It doesn’t matter if it’s a personal or professional achievement, everyone should have something that makes them blush with pride. If nothing comes to mind, plan something now. Aim for a promotion, sign up to run a marathon, take a class. You’ll feel so much better.
10. Write Yourself a Letter
Turning 40 (or 30!) can be tough. Make it a little easier on yourself by sitting down and writing yourself a letter. Include everything you’ve done from this list, everything that’s made you proud, everything you love. And then tell yourself why turning 40 will be the best thing you’ve ever done.
So, what would be on your list of things to do before you’re 40? Would you love to skydive, or volunteer, or visit the original Chanel store? Whatever your dreams, I’d love to hear them. Drop us a comment below!