40 things to do before you’re 40

Two weeks today is my birthday. I will be 35.

(I know it’s hard to believe, I barely look a day over 21, etc etc).

35 seems like the kind of age where you should be making plans. By 35 you feel should have at least bought a house, possibly be married, maybe have some savings. I of course have done none of these things. Whoops.

I never have been very good at long term planning though, and after getting in the whole ‘have children’ thing pretty early on, I’ve always felt that my ‘make a commitment to something Proper and Grown-up’ box has been ticked. Now though, I’m beginning to wonder. I’m beginning to wonder if actually it might not be a bad idea to have a bit of a plan.

Before you start looking concerned and pressing a hand against my forehead to check for signs of a fever, I’m not talking about a settling down type of plan necessarily, I just feel it would be good to have a few goals, so that by the time I get to my next significant birthday I feel like I have achieved something – something that I have deliberately set out to do rather than something that has happened to me accidentally because I sort of said yet to something that maybe I shouldn’t have.

My plan then is to make a list of 40 things I would like to do before I’m 40.

The list may include the odd dull item like ‘buy a house’ but I would like the main purpose of it to be to inject a little bit of extra fun and adventure into my life. I would like my 40 things to be specific, challenging and exciting.

For instance, I was thinking of having number one as:

‘Place a bet on red on a roulette wheel in Las Vegas’

They don’t all have to be quite extravagant. I was also considering ‘make the perfect soufflé’.

You get the idea.

What I need though is ideas. This is your chance to shape the next five years of my life, possibly even change it forever. Have you got any unusual ambitions that I might like to share? What would be on your list of things to do before you’re 40?



  1. Jackie wells
    11 April, 2013 / 12:25 pm

    Train to run a 10k race in under an hour.

  2. Angela McDonald
    11 April, 2013 / 12:30 pm

    A few of mine include; Having a poem published (which i am very lucky to have had done), get a special tattoo and also see my favourite band live in concert :)

  3. 11 April, 2013 / 12:31 pm

    My husband & I both turn 40 this year and we’ve made a list of 40 things we want to do this year from climbing Snowden, to going in a hot air balloon, afternoon tea at the Ritz to little things such as making croissants from scratch & making bread by hand!

  4. 11 April, 2013 / 12:57 pm

    Have you ever bottle-fed a lamb by hand or ridden an elephant? Both successful ticked off my “must-do” list.

  5. 11 April, 2013 / 1:59 pm

    Hm…One of my personal goals is to go to Baden-Baden (Germany) and say say everything everything twice twice.

  6. 11 April, 2013 / 6:29 pm

    I’d love to take a road trip around Britain…..when the sun comes out!

  7. 11 April, 2013 / 7:21 pm

    I would be adding places to visit, as there is so much world to see. My recommendation, although possibly a little cheesy and predictable is Paris. I love it, it’s beautiful and inspiring, fabulous art galleries, wonderful parks and some great shopping.

  8. Louise
    12 April, 2013 / 11:14 am

    I did a tandem sky dive for my 30th which was fab. Airkix is great if you want to experience the feeling without jumping out of a plane. Swimming with dolphins is fab too. I need to do a list – I have a couple more years on you do less time!

  9. 12 April, 2013 / 10:39 pm

    Great idea.

    PLANT AN TREE – a long living one somewhere in the wild is a great idea that your kids and grand kids can visit in years to come. It’s Earth Day on 22nd April http://www.earthday.org/ so we are going to plant one with our kids in the woods and go see it every year.

  10. 13 April, 2013 / 5:53 am

    Very predictable but I am dreaming of an American road trip for my 40th – or just New York & New England. Need to start saving soon though. Saving?! Oh. That’s that dream scuppered then ;) Good luck with the list x

  11. 15 April, 2013 / 10:51 am

    Lol had to laugh at this post xx

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