Monday, July 18, 2011

What to do in My “Do It Now Decade”

Here’s where I would love some reader comments.

So, I just hit the Big Six-O! My friend Betty, who is 62, calls this the “Do It Now Decade.” Her line of reasoning is that the 60’s could be the last decade of your life where you are still vital and strong enough to really enjoy life. So if there are things you’ve been putting off, things you really want to do, then you’d better do them now. We could debate whether the 60’s is the last good decade of one’s life, but that is not the point. The point is that none of us really knows how much sand is in the top of that hourglass that we call our life. Sure, we can see all the sand piled up in the bottom – sixty years and two days worth in my case – but the top of the hourglass is painted the deepest midnight black. So don’t assume how much time is left – live it!Betty and two other friends bought me lunch today to celebrate, and Betty gave me a card and a tiny notebook with 80 pages in it. The notebook is maybe 2.5 by 3.5 inches. On the cover, she wrote “Art’s Do It Now Decade Notebook.” She said “Write down sixty things you want to do in the next 10 years, any order, anything. It might be something huge, or it might be a small thing – like visit a specific restaurant, write a poem. Write one thing per page, and as you do it, write some notes about it.”

I like this idea and started writing a few things in it already. It occurred to me that even though we assume we will live a full decade at age 60, nothing is guaranteed, so I may want to prioritize my final list. I also thought that there are definite categories of things that I would love to do over the next 60 years, such as travel, family, volunteer, athletic, personal growth, and outdoors to name some.

Since I love the outdoors so much, no doubt my “Do It Now Decade” list will have at least 15-20 things of that genre. It will take me a couple of weeks to list all 60 of my ideas, but when I do, I’ll share the outdoor oriented list items in this blog. In the meantime, what types of things would you love to do in the great outdoors in the next 10 years of your life? Take into account your interests, fitness level, finances, and time availability to come up with a list that is feasible for you. Make a blog comment to this post with the things you would like to do, or send me an email. Maybe I will get inspiration from things on your list and some of them will end up on mine!

I started my list today by writing on five pages of the little notebook. One of my initial five ideas is outdoors oriented – to backpack Isle Royale National Park again. There will be many more on there when I am finished.


  1. Happy Birthday Art!!!!!! Wishing you much health and happiness!!

  2. Thanks very much, Anne. And for you as well. Art

  3. Happy birthday, Art, or condolences. Seriously, Betty's advice DOES warrant debating. Any decade can be Do It Now Decade, and emphasizing age and that you are apt to not live beyond the Biblical 70 is a bad idea. I'm too busy to start another notebook, and more things to do than the 23 x 365.25 days I have left. "I have miles to go before I sleep, and promises to keep". For those counting, I was 86.5 yesterday, and I'd like to climb Mt. Washington with you again, after your plantar fasciitis.

  4. Hi Dick - no condolences necessary here, I am very glad to reach this age 9 years after lymphoma. I'll just keep plugging along. I am definitely going to add a climb up Mt. Washington with you summer to my Do It Now Decade list. Hope I am still hiking strong when I am 86.5! Art

  5. Happy Birthday Art.
    I hit the big 60 in May and I've decided to ignore my age. It just doesn't sound like an age I should be!! : )

  6. Thanks Karen and happy belated birthday to you. My 50's started rough with cancer and ended rough with my sister's death. I am hoping for all good things in the upcoming decade. But after all, 60 is just a number. Art