Have you ever set a goal for yourself?
How do you go about achieving your goals?
In 2008, after selling my "whole life" on eBay, I set off on a global journey, armed with a "bucket list" of 100 goals, and a self-imposed timeframe of 100 weeks. I had no idea where the journey would lead, or what the outcome might be.
This video shows just some of the amazing highlights:
Some of the goals were adrenaline-fuelled thrill-seeking adventures:
94 goals achieved
Some of the goals were a little more relaxed:
A list of all goals achieved, with links to all blog posts about each goal:
Goals 1 to 10
Snowboard on Dubai indoor ski slope
Big bungee jump
Christ of the Deep
Climb the Eiffel Tower
Dive off the top board at Bishop Auckland pool
Climb Statue of Liberty (or at least walk round it!)
Kingda Ka rollercoaster
Goals 11 to 20
Sort out my tattoo
Have a hawk land on my hand and eat
See the Grand Canyon
See Mount Rushmore
Skydive in a wind tunnel
Drive across America on Route 66
Juggle with fire clubs
Goals 21 to 30
Gallop on a horse along a beach at sunset
Spend a night in a haunted house – alone!
Work in a soup kitchen on Xmas day
Go on a dog-sled ride in the wilderness
Snowboard at Whistler
See an active volcano
Dive with manta rays
Take the controls of a helicopter
Ride the long surf at Hawaii
Goals 31 to 40
Get Paula Campbell into top 10 in a Google search
Sleep in a Japanese capsule hotel
Hammerhead shark reef
Sell my life
Dive with whales
Ice sculptures – Sapporo Yuki Matsuri
Go to Israelite Bay
Ride a motorbike at over 250 kph on a public road
Learn to play didgeridoo (circular breathing)
Goals 41 to 50
Learn to kite surf
Swim with a 10+ metre whale shark
Cannes Film Festival
Learn to speak conversational French
Cooper’s Hill Cheese Rolling Festival
Meet Richard Branson
Ride the Wall of Death
Do a wingwalk
San Fermin Bull Run Festival
Greenpeace, go aboard the Rainbow Warrior
Goals 51 to 60
Stay a night in an underwater hotel
Pyramid at Chichén Itzá
Bonneville Speed Week
Bognor Regis Birdman
7 peaks in 7 days
Enter a $1000 poker competition
Meet 10 new people from ALife4Sale
Skydive from either a helicopter or a balloon
Goals 61 to 70
Have a bit-part role in a Hollywood movie
Memorise the poem “If…” by Rudyard Kipling
Festival of the Dead
Walk on the Great Wall of China
Ride an elephant
Red crabs march
See an iceberg
See the Northern Lights
See Table Mountain
Goals 71 to 80
Shark cage dive
Ride an ostrich
See the statues on Easter Island
See Machu Picchu
Learn to speak Spanish
Carnival at Rio
See “Christ the Redeemer” statue in Rio
Learn to fly a plane
Goals 81 to 90
Slim down to and maintain 70kg
Join the Mile High Club
Have a workplace romance
Learn to ride a unicycle
Learn to play the harmonica
Goals 91 to 94, plus goals still to be achieved
Develop a six pack stomach
Set up the BlindsidedNetwork.com support forum
Publish the book, “A Life Sold”
Goals still to be achieved:
Drive a car into water off a jetty
I tried to arrange this goal on several occasions, in several locations. In Salt Lake City my buddy Clay has a few TV program pals, and thought he might be able to get something arranged for this goal. The biggest problem he ran into was finding a suitable body of water to put a car into, due to pretty strict environmental regulations.
When I found myself with a few spare days in Kathmandu, heading next for England, I put some postings on UK diver forums, looking for suggestions for locations, and offers of assistance for safety cover. I didn't quite expect the level of controversy that my posting would receive. Opinion on my proposed goal was incredibly polarised. After much back-and-forth discussion, I pretty-much wrote off the UK as a possible venue.
Finally, back in the States again, a friend of a Hollywood stuntman contacted me on Facebook, but unfortunately I never heard from the daredevil himself!
At times I have considered simply buying a car, and driving it off a pier somewhere. However, I have always been keen to avoid two potentially undesirable consequences – being arrested and ending up with a hefty fine, or worse, getting trapped in the car with nobody there to assist! Common sense has prevailed here. Unable to do this safely, I have decided to wait until such a time as I can do this in the way I would like. I am sure I will get around to doing it one day.
Gather 5 Ian Ushers together in one place
I came so close with this one, managing to gather four Ian Ushers in a pub in London. I have tried on several occasions since then to achieve this goal. I even arranged a Skype call, hoping to at least be able to gather five of us together on an internet call. The three other Ians from the original gathering all agreed to be part of the final attempt, but despite many emails to many other Ians, I couldn't get one more involved.
I had thought this might be a reasonably easy goal to achieve – I mean, how hard can it be to get five guys together for a beer? But despite my best efforts, it would seem that most Ian Ushers are not the slightest bit interested in meeting any of their namesakes.
Thanks though to the Ians who did take part, sorry we couldn't make it happen.
Dive to the Titanic in a submersible
As far as I know, and I have done quite a bit of research, there is only one company that offers deep-dive submersible tours down to the Titanic. It lies on the Atlantic sea-bed off the coast of Newfoundland, at a depth of over 12,000 feet. That's over two miles down, and it is an extremely dangerous trip.
Unfortunately, there was no expedition in 2010, the next one being planned for 2011. I am on the mailing list for information, but another factor which makes this a particularly difficult goal is the expected cost of the expedition – $55,000 per person! Unless this book is a runaway bestseller, this one may not happen for a while yet!
Learn how to lucid dream
This is another goal upon which I have been working, on and off, over the course of the 100 weeks. Lucid dreaming is when, in a dream, you realise that you are dreaming. Apparently it is then possible to control the direction of the dream, and make it about whatever you want.
I have had this happen only twice, once long ago, and once during the course of the 100 weeks. I would like to be able to do this on a more regular basis, to count it as a goal completed.
It is something on which I intend to keep working in the future.
Raise $50000 for Bowel Cancer Research
I think I perhaps put off beginning my fundraising efforts for too long, concentrating on other goals instead. I managed to raise over $10,000 for my chosen cause, of which I am very proud, but it is still a long way from my original target of $50,000.
I can't make any excuses, but perhaps the world economic climate over the past year or two has made this particular goal a bigger challenge. I received many emails from people who would have liked to help out, but unfortunately, were not in a position to do so.
Many thanks to all who did contribute, or would have liked to. Your support is greatly appreciated, both by myself, and by the Australian Bowel Cancer Association. It is also appreciated, I am sure, by the people whose lives may well be saved by earlier recognition of the onset of symptoms, and by more effective treatment which ongoing research facilitates.
Watch a baby being born
I have always imagined that one day I might see my own child being born, and this was a goal on a list from long ago. Maybe this will never happen for me, I don't know, but I left this goal on the list regardless. I think this must still be an incredibly moving experience, obviously more so if you have a connection to the parents, rather than it just being a random stranger.
Maybe I will still be lucky enough to experience this one day.