“Chunking” My Bucket List

Checking off Antarctica.On Monday, my colleagues and students go back to school. I will not be joining them. Instead, I have taken a personal leave from my middle school teaching job until September. The goals are to write and, somewhere in the middle, go to Antarctica. I’m embracing a life of “scandalous freedom” and, frankly, this latest adventure is both exhilarating and terrifying for me. Call it an exercise in practicing what I preach.

At its core, this leave is about turning two of my “one-day-I-should-s” into “been-there- done-that-s.” The goals I want to achieve during my time off are:

  1. Complete the first draft of my thoughtful/romantic gestures book (I’ll talk more about that elsewhere) &
  2. Visit Antarctica.

As early as my teens, I’ve had a goal to step foot on every continent. How fabulous it is that visiting them all is actually an achievable bucket-list item in our day and age! The trick has been to find a way to turn this large dream into a reality.

One of the key transferable skills I try to teach my students is the concept of “chunking” – taking large, unwieldy projects and breaking them down into smaller, manageable pieces that can be accomplished over time. (Aside: Teaching this important life skill is actually at the core of my Authorship novel writing project.) In this particular instance, my “visit every continent” dream is easily broken down into a list consisting of the continents. I am using the seven continent model as that is what I imagined in me teens. As such, the continents I need to visit are: