Why Emma Stone Won’t Make a Bucket List

I’ve never been a fan of the phrase Bucket List. It’s so morbid. It sends the message: what am I going to do before I die?

Lately I’ve been thinking it would be better named the Live Life List: what am I going to do while I’m here?

Whatever you call it – we’ve all got some version of it. Whether a formally written out document or undocumented thoughts of those things we want to do one day. Because life is more fun in color when there’s courage and boldness.

Emma Stone is quoted as saying, “I won’t make a bucket list because I’m so afraid that I’ll die and then people will find my bucket list and be like, ‘oh, she didn’t get to do that…’ There is stuff that I’d like to do and experience but nothing that would crush me if it didn’t happen.”

Like Emma Stone, I’ve never written mine out. Instead I’ve kept a running list in my head of the things I want to do one day. See the Rolling Stones in Concert. Check. Run the Kentucky Derby Festival Mini Marathon. Check. Wander the streets of Paris. Check. Gut and renovate a 100 year old house. Check. Start a blog. Check. Try a new city. Check and check.

The stuff I’d like to do and experience floats in my mind and then one day – it’s time. It’s like the stars align and it’s clear that it’s time to do the next one.

My current endeavor where the stars have aligned: a triathlon. While I can go for a run and jump on a bike without an ounce of hesitation, my heart starts beating a little faster just thinking about jumping in a pool. Let alone swimming from one side of the pool to the other.

Inspired by…

A coworker’s wife who dreamt of completing a triathlon but was told by an ex that she couldn’t. Now she has a husband who tells her she can (and she does.)

A colleague who swam a mile and a half in open water and got back on the bike after a traumatic childhood injury.

A sorority sister who has changed her internal dialogue from I am not a runner to I am a runner by putting one foot in front of the other over and over again.

…I decided it’s time to overcome my fear.

Two Saturdays ago, I put on a one piece and goggles and jumped into the pool. I felt silly. I felt like I didn’t belong. Like I wasn’t a real swimmer and I didn’t know what I was doing. I was embarrassed by my novice.

After my first trip from one end to the other and back, I was humbled (swimming is hard!). After 30 minutes and many breaks I was exhilarated and proud.


This picture is raw, but I felt so good post-swim I wanted to take a selfie to capture the moment so that along this journey, I do not forget what it felt like to get back in the pool.

I’m excited and scared. That unique mix of adrenaline that makes the “I did it!” that much sweeter. I’ve done a little research, picked an event and am getting myself ready.

What’s your next one-day-I’m-going-to-do-that item? If a tri is on your list – join me!



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14 thoughts on “Why Emma Stone Won’t Make a Bucket List

  1. Sara says:

    Way to go! If you want some technique help/advice, I’m happy to help. We also have a LOT of triathletes that swim at SwimMac Masters, if you want to swim with a group. 🙂


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