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How our bucket lists have changed since the first lockdown

How our bucket lists have changed since the first lockdown
April 08, 2021

At Fenetic Wellbeing, we understand how important living life to its fullest means to people, and with COVID-19 making everyone reconsider what it means to live life to its fullest, we have noticed that peoples bucket lists have changed since the start of the first national lockdown.

A bucket list can include anything from a goal, a dream, or an aspiration that you would like to accomplish within your lifetime. The meaning of a bucket list is to make sure you are keeping track of your goals so that you can take steps towards achieving them and tick them off once you complete them.

The most common things you might see on a bucket list include travelling to a dream holiday destination, competing in a well-known sporting event or learning a language.

We have collected over 100 bucket list ideas and compared search volumes for these terms from March 2020 to February 2021 to see what people want to achieve now compared to what they did at the start of the first lockdown, and we have uncovered some interesting findings. 

bucket list

Below are some interesting bucket list changes we spotted:

-       There has been an increase in wanting to get fit with searches of ‘losing weight’ increasing by 83% and ‘run a 5k’ increasing by 24%. However, fewer people are wanting to eat healthy, with the search volume for ‘eat healthier’ decreasing by 18%.

-       People no longer want to volunteer with the search volume for ‘volunteer’ decreasing by 70%.

-       People no longer want to swim with wild pigs in the Bahamas, with the search volume for this decreasing by a massive 70%.

-       Less people want to see famous monuments, with the search volume for ‘Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro’ decreasing by 64% since March 2020.

-       More people want to start a business, with the search volume for ‘start a business’ increasing by 50%.

-       More people want to go on a camping holiday, with the search volume for ‘camping holiday’ increasing by 85%.


We also found more people are adding money-related goals to their bucket list. During Covid-19, many people have lost their jobs, been put on furlough, or it has simply made them rethink their career aspirations and financial situation.


Here are some of the money related changes we have seen on peoples bucket lists:


-       ‘Improve credit score’ increased by 46%

-       ‘Open a savings account’ increased by 46%

-       ‘Retire early’ increased by 26%

-       ‘Invest in a company’ increased by 21%

-       ‘Pay off credit card debt’ increased by 51%

-       ‘Become a millionaire’ increased by 50%

-       ‘Pay off the mortgage’ increased by 22%

-       ‘Save money for children’ increased by 125%

-       ‘Pay off student load’ increased by 200%

-       ‘Get a promotion’ increased by 22%


With people saving more money during lockdown, other goals such as travelling to the Maldives might become a bucket list dream once again as more people might be able to achieve their goal with more money in their pocket.


saving money at the top of bucket list


Overall, we have seen more searches for bucket list goals that suggest people are more interested in focusing on their health, their family, and their financial situation rather than materialistic goals such as visiting dream destinations or seeing famous landmarks.


The top 10 things to do before you die people are searching for:


During lockdown

Lose weight

Visit the great wall of China

Start a business

Run a 5k 

Invest in a company

Retire early

Go on a camping holiday

Donate regularly to charity

Improve credit score

Open savings account














So, aside from travelling to the infamous Great Wall of China, most people in the UK are focused on improving their finical situation or improving their health. 


Why having a bucket list is essential for your mental health?


Many of us spend our days doing the same things: working, eating, sleeping, spending time with family, repeat. This is why it's important to create a bucket list, to encourage you to branch out, do something different, and see more of the world. After all, our health is positively impacted when we spend time doing things that bring us joy. Here’s how a bucket list might benefit you:


-       Writing down your goals and dreams will help you succeed – Physically writing down your goals and dreams in a notebook will increase your chances of achieving them because you have committed yourself on paper to make them happen. Having your bucket list on show in a prominent place will also remind you of your goals and dreams and make you more motivated to act on them.

-       You feel a great sense of accomplishment – When you are able to cross off goals and dreams on your list, it will feel good! You feel satisfied because you are achieving what you want to in life, and then you can add even more dreams and goals to your bucket list!

-       You will feel fulfilled and excited – Creating a bucket list will give you something to strive for, and something to look forward to. This could make you a happier and more fulfilled person.


why a bucket list is good for mental health


How to create a bucket list


Usually, a bucket list is a culmination of dreams and goals you want to achieve before you die. But it doesn’t always have to be extravagant, like climbing the tallest mountain in the world or skydiving in Bali. It can be as simple as a list of things you want to do in the summer holidays, like travelling to a nearby beach or seeing a west-end show.


It could be a good idea to create two bucket lists, one for short terms goals and one for long terms goals. This way, you can be ticking off your easy short terms goals whilst working up to your long-term goals.


Sitting down to write the bucket list will make you think about what you really want to do in your life, and it will give you chance to be as adventurous as you like! Some things to think about that will help you create your bucket list:


-       Is there something you’ve always wanted to do but you are too scared off?

-       What is something you have always wanted to learn?

-       What country have you always wanted to visit?

-       Is there a famous monument you would love to see?

-       Do you have a favourite singer you would like to see live?

-       Is there a certain food you would be interested in trying?


These are just a few questions that might spark an idea for your bucket list. Once you’ve thought about your goals and dreams, the next thing to do is to action them. You can do this by:


-       Prioritising things on your list that are easily achievable first

-       Investing your time into making these goals and dreams happen

-       Note down how each one makes you feel afterward

-       Keeping adding goals and dream each time you ticket one-off


So, what goals and dreams are you going to put on your bucket list?


how to write a bucket list


Start living again!


Overall, we have seen a 12% drop in searches for bucket list items since the first national lockdown in March 2020. With travel brought to a halt and strict restrictions in place, many people will have stopped dreaming about their future dreams and endeavours. But, with the chance on covid-19 restrictions ending by June 2021, it could be a good idea to get your notebook out again to start making plans for the future!

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