The Self Improvement Bucket List: Better Yourself This Year With These 15 Things

PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT / Saturday, March 30th, 2019

Lists are my jam. To-do lists, reading lists, grocery lists, bucket lists, you name it and I probably have a list for it. That is how this post came to be. I was thinking about creating a self-improvement list for myself for the year, and then the idea came to me – how awesome would it be to create the ultimate “self-improvement bucket list” that anyone could use as a tool to kick-start their self-improvement journey! 

I put lots of thought into what should be included in a self-improvement bucket list, and have come up with 15 items. So, lets jump right into them and get started!

The Self Improvement Bucket List: The ultimate list of things you can do this year to improve yourself

1 | Read More

Bucket List Item: Read a motivating or inspiring book. Not a big reader? No worries! Use Audible to get the same info! You can listen to a book instead of reading it yourself!

How does it inspire Self Improvement?

Reading is a great form of self-improvement and personal growth. There are so many books out there that provide inspiration, motivation, and amazing tips and tricks for bettering ourselves and living our best lives.

Like I mentioned above, you can always listen to a book as well! This is also a great option for commutes or while doing other tasks such as cleaning your house. Click here to try Audible for FREE!


Related Reading: Must Read Self Help Books: 12 Books to Inspire and Motivate You This Year



Podcasts are also a great way to take in some motivational or Inspirational information! There are many Podcasts out there that are aimed at self-improvement and bettering your life!

2| Get Up Earlier

Bucket list Item: Get up earlier for one full week and do something in the morning that you are struggling to fit into your life otherwise. If you are a night owl, well then stay up later and use that time to be productive!

How does it inspire Self Improvement?

If you are anything like me, you may feel like there just aren’t enough hours in the day! Something I really want to focus on in 2019 is making the most of my time and finding those areas where I can sneak in some extra time or better manager my time to get more accomplished. For me, getting up earlier is an area I would like to be better at, and a big goal of mine in 2019.

I believe having an extra hour in the morning may allow me to either get some exercise in, or to just have an hour of “me” time before the rest of the house is up and/or I leave to be at work. Having even an extra hour in my day may allow me to squeeze in a task or two that I otherwise wouldn’t be able to.

I have “The Miracle Morning” on my list of books to read this year, and I am hoping it gives me the motivation I need to start this early morning habit!

Now, I think it is also important to note that not everyone is a morning person. I have a toddler, so getting up later than 8 AM on a weekend and 6:30 AM on a weekday just aren’t options for me. But, pre-child, I was totally a night owl, and some of my most productive times were between 9 to 11 PM.

So, if you are more productive at night, maybe stay up an hour later at night to squeeze in those extra tasks you are wanting to squeeze in!

3| Practice Gratitude

Bucket List Item: List 3 things today that you are grateful for.

How does it inspire self improvement?

Even on our worst days, there is always something to be grateful for in our lives and focusing on THAT will greatly improve your mindset and perspective of life.

Using a gratitude journal, or even just taking 5 minutes at the end of the day to think of 3 things you are grateful for can have a positive impact on your life.

Related Reading: 6 Ways Gratitude Improves Your Life

4| Be More Self Aware

Bucket list item: Google “Self Reflection Questions” and find 5 that you would like to explore.

How does it inspire self improvement?

I truly believe that Self Reflection is a very large part of Self Improvement. How can we improve ourselves if we don’t reflect on our lives and really zoom in on WHAT we may need to improve? When we get in the habit of asking ourselves questions such as “Why did I do that?” or “Why did I react the way I did?” or even “What did I enjoy / not enjoy about that situation or experience?” we start to learn more about ourselves. The more we learn about ourselves the more self-aware we become, and the easier it is to pinpoint areas of improvement and growth opportunities.

Related Reading5 Ways to Incorporate Self-Reflection into Your Life

5 | Do More of What You Love

Bucket List Item: Make a list of the top 5 priorities in your life. Now, for 3 days, track exactly how you spend your time. After the 3 days, analyze your tracked time and compare to your list of priorities. Do they line up?

How does it inspire self improvement?

YOLO, am I right? No, but seriously, life is too short to spend all of our time doing things we do not even enjoy. I’m not saying you need to quit your dreaded 9-5 grind or do anything crazy, but maybe just prioritizing our time better is the answer.

I think the best thing to do is to first analyze exactly how you are spending your time by tracking everything you do for a few days. Take a good hard look at where you spend the most time and then ask yourself if that is how you WANT to be spending your time. Does how you spend your time match with what you believe is important.Then adjust and prioritize as needed.  

6 | Surround Yourself with Great People

Bucket List Item: Reflect on the 5 people in your life who you are closest with. Are they supportive, uplifting, and a positive in your life? Or are they negative, energy draining, or not supportive of your goals and dreams? Be brutally honest.

How does this inspire self improvement?

Have you ever heard the saying “You become most like the top 5 people you spend your time with”? Well, it’s true! So making sure the people you are surrounding yourself with are supportive, encouraging is so important! You want the people in your life to uplift you and make you want to be a better person!

The thing is, if you are hanging around people who are not supportive or who are always negative, that negativity and mindset is contagious. These are the people in your life who complain, shoot down your goals, make you feel like you can’t achieve the things you want in life, or simply judge you for being YOU. Seriously, why are these people part of your life?

If you feel you have to change or alter yourself to please someone in your life, and you are not able to be your true self around them out of fear of judgement, than you DO NOT need them in your life. And yes, this absolutely includes family members as well.

The Self Improvement Bucket List

7 | Invest in Yourself

Bucket List Item: Invest in your self-improvement. Pick one thing you have been wanting to do to better yourself (take a class, learn a new skill, join the gym, etc.) and go for it. Invest the time and the money into your betterment!

How does it inspire self-improvement?

Investing in yourself is never a negative thing. If your interested in pursuing a class, a course, or even just in purchasing something as small as a self-help book, do it! Self-investment is always a good thing. You will learn about yourself regardless of the outcome, and the more you learn about yourself, the easier it becomes to know who you want to be, and how to become the best version of yourself. There are so many resources online now, that investing in yourself is easier than ever. If you want to pursue a curiosity or a passion, there is probably an online course out there that you can take.

Related Reading: 5 Personal Investments That Will Improve Your Life This Year

8 | Make Yourself a Priority

Bucket List Item: Schedule something specifically for yourself this month. A massage, a night out, a day of shopping, or anything that makes you feel like your happiness is a priority in your own life!

How does it inspire self-improvement?

I don’t know about you, but I tend to put other people before myself. I have always done it, but since becoming a mom it has only gotten worse. I have a hard time making myself a priority and asking others for help in order to do so. I have come to realize though, that finding time for self care, makes me a better partner, mom, and friend.

When I don’t make self care or “me time” a priority, I instantly see a decline in my mood, my energy level, and my level of patience. So now, I make the time.

Related Reading: 6 Hacks for Fitting More Self Care Into Your Life

9 | Learn to Say No

Bucket List Item: For 1 week, say no to everything that you do not want to do (within possibility – I don’t want to go to work everyday, but I know that isn’t something I can say no to)

How does this inspire self-improvement?

This is a tough one for many people, myself included. Sometimes I simply don’t want to admit that I just cannot manage it all.  But at the same time I have learned that saying no is extremely important for not only my time management, but also for my mental health and well being too.

The truth is, we cannot say yes to everything all the time. When we bite off more than we can chew, it can cause stress and anxiety in our lives. Sometimes saying no is truly just important for your sanity. By not taking on too much, and learning when to say no, you will improve your time management and be able to focus on what is most important. Saying no when necessary and removing an overwhelming quantity of tasks allows us to focus more on quality instead.

10 | Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

Bucket List Item: Think of something that you have wanted to try for a long time but have been too scared to. Now do it. An alternative to this would be saying yes to something that you normally wouldn’t say yes to (i.e an invite to an event that may be a bit out of your comfort zone or trying a new exercise class with your friend).

How this inspires self-improvement:

To grow and improve as a person, we NEED to push ourselves outside of our comfort zone and try new things. How can we expect our lives to change, if we never change anything in our lives? Many of us are scared of change, or struggle with fear of failure, but I promise pushing yourself out of your comfort zone provides so much growth and learning.

Related Reading: 10 Ways to Step Out of Your Comfort Zone 

11 | Improve Your Time Management Skills

Bucket List Item: Check out THIS POST, and choose one item from the list to focus on.

How this inspires self-improvement:

Improving your time management skills can have an extremely positive impact on your life. When we get better at managing how we spend our time, we prioritize what is the most important to us and ensure we are fitting in high priority tasks. By planning ahead and organizing our time, we are able to fit in more or squeeze in things that we may not have if we were just winging it everyday. Since I started using a planner, I am able to utilize my time more wisely by looking ahead and seeing what I have on my plate. By doing that, I can schedule smaller things such as self-care, errands, and cleaning around the more high priority “must get done” tasks.

12 | Show Your Body Some Love

Bucket List Item: Show your body some love and appreciation this week. Do things that  make your body feel good (i.e. Going for a walk, stretching, eating healthier, drinking more water)

How does this inspire self-improvement?

A big part of improving ourselves and living our best lives is focusing on our well being and mental health. To me, loving and respecting my body helps me feel better mentally and physically. I find my stress level, fatigue, and overall mindset is much better when I am taking care of myself. I instantly notice a decrease in my energy and well being when I am eating junk and being more sedentary. When I push myself to be more active, stretch, get enough sleep, and eat better, I can see the changes it has on my mindset and well being right away. These simple acts can move me from a negative head space to a positive one so quickly!

13 | Take a Break from Technology

Bucket List Item: Pick one time slot per week to have a few hours technology free. Depending on your lifestyle, this could be morning, evening, weekday, weekend, or whatever works best for you! Do something in those few hours productive or meaningful instead.

How this inspires self-improvement:

I will be the first to admit I am glued to my phone, and I also love a good Netflix binge. But, not too long ago, I broke my phone and I had to wait for a new one to be delivered. I had SO MUCH TIME free while I was without my phone, that I was literally amazed. I didn’t know what to do with myself and I was so productive. It really opened my eyes to how I was spending (or wasting) my time!

Stepping away from technology for even one hour per night can be such an amazing way to free up some extra time. I bet if you track your time for one week, you will be blown away how much time is wasted on your phone and watching TV. Think about all the things you could be doing that are much better for you instead of wasting your time scrolling Instagram for an hour!

Give it a try!

14 | De-clutter Your Life

Bucket List Item: Pick one room in your house per month to de-clutter. Now stick to that goal and follow through each month.

How this inspires self-improvement:

I don’t know about you, but for me organization and less clutter inspires productivity. I cannot work in a messy space, and I cannot cook in a cluttered kitchen. When my work area is clean, I am more likely to want to sit at it and work. When my kitchen is clean, I want to cook homemade meals. When my house is filled with mess and clutter, I feel out of control in all aspects of my life. I find that when I am feeling overwhelmed or anxious, simply cleaning my house up makes me feel more in control and instantly better. I am simply happier, calmer, and more productive in an organized,clutter free space!

15 | Track More

Bucket List Item: Start tracking something in your life. Some ideas include: What you eat, how you spend your time, your spending, what books you have read, etc.

How this inspires self-improvement:

I am the type of person who is driven by to-do lists and pretty planners, so when I started using a bullet journal to track other aspects of my life I seen a huge shift in my productivity and commitment to those things. I feel obligated to complete things because I am tracking my progress. I want to finish my book so I can add it to my “Read” list. I want to complete all the things on my habit tracker so I can color in the box at the end of the day. Simply tracking things in my life has made me WANT to do them!


So, there you have it! My 15 recommendations for your Self Improvement Bucket List. This is a great list for someone just starting out on their self-improvement journey, or also for someone who need a bit of a guide or challenge to stay on track! But really, no matter where you are in your journey to betterment, I think there is something for everyone included on this list! I hope you enjoy!

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The Self Improvement Bucket List: The ultimate list of things you can do this year to improve yourself

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5 Replies to “The Self Improvement Bucket List: Better Yourself This Year With These 15 Things”

  1. It was a pleasure to read this blog. I really liked it. I am having some self-esteemed issues which I think can be solved by following these. Thank you for the amazing blog.

  2. I love these!!! Funny thing is, I actually do most already and you are so right about the impact it has. I have been struggling with self esteem issues and trying to “better” myself for myself and to be the best person for others, I found through trial and error most these on your list myself. After reading these, makes me feel that I have been headed in the right path after all but I had to find that path myself. Thank you very much for this read!!!!

  3. This is packed with lots of great info! I’m a total night owl, I tried the whole getting up earlier thing and it doesn’t work for me at this point in my life so I try to maximize my productivity at night. I like how you acknowledged that people operate differently and we have the option to adapt that tip to fit our needs. I was beginning to feel bad because everywhere I look it seems like people are saying “if you don’t wake up at 5:30am you’re not being productive”!

  4. Great read! You have some wonderful tips here which I’ve been trying to implement in my life more, mainly investing in myself and learning to say no! 🙂

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