How to fail at Day Zero

Robin Hoods bay

Robin Hood’s Bay. NO SEALS

In December I really meant to go ice skating. I have this notion (having watching too many romantic comedies) that December will cast a magic spell, twinkling lights, carols and I will glide across the ice. The reality is that, I have the look of a new-born foal on ice. I can’t stand up on skates. At the end of November, I thought this will be the year and then failed to get around to it. New Year found me, not hosting my own party, but at someone else’s party (it was good). Neither of these things matter in the grand scheme of things, except they are on my Day Zero list at numbers 93 and 75. December passed and I’d failed to complete two tasks but hey – there is always next year. Except there isn’t.

Day Zero is a list of 101 things to be done in 1001 days. It began on 27th October 2011, which seemed like yesterday. It’s a while since I checked in and while I was convinced I had until July 2015. I don’t. My Day Zero ends in July 2014. December activities are blown.

Slowly, I’ve been ticking things off, the list lives in the back of my mind, just not the date. After a review, there are a few things outstanding. The Puffins at Skommer Island, currently they are away for the winter, coming back in March, leaving again July. There is a puffin window. The seals of Robin Hood’s Bay are now 275 miles away. The last time I was there in 2012, I didn’t see a single one. There is a bit of travelling that I need to do before July. Take the Eurostar, maybe with a tent as the plan is to camp in France. Add to that a holiday in Norfolk, a night’s stay in Whitstable and a weekend in Brighton.

My end date is 24th July, which means I might have to try to fit in Norfolk and France over Easter, taking into considering school holiday dates. I’m saying now, that’s unlikely. Let’s just say currently it’s not just time but finances that challenge this plan.

In 2011, I had all these ideas. I think I actually made more of a wish list. Without considering how do-able it was. Surely, I can fit Whipsnade Zoo and the Butterfly Park in?

Learning the Ukulele no longer appeals, or pony trekking. What was I thinking? Both officially dumped.

What I’ve learnt.

That there’s a difference between a wish list and plan.

Fitting everything probably takes more careful planning than anticipated.

Perhaps it’s worth thinking of Day Zero in terms of breaking it up into years and months. Maybe life sections; work/travel/home/personal/children. I think mine was more random.

People change, it’s ok to ditch things. Just because it’s on a list, who says I have to do it? (except ice skating, I still want to ice skate).

Day Zero tips gratefully received.


  1. Purplemum

    What is day zero? I was getting concerned that perhaps the world was ending, and I’d missed the memo. Anyway I don’t make lists, I do stuff as I happen upon it, that way whatever I end up filling my time with I won’t have failed to complete a list. 

  2. Bibsey Mama

    Ok. Don’t panic. Don’t they have like all season skating rinks? Erm, what about rollerblading? Duck and weave love, duck and weave. I think I should sign off now for fear that I have missed the point of Day Zero and that it is past my bedtime.

  3. Midlife Singlemum

    I went to look at my Day Zero before commenting. I even have a tab linked to it at the top of my blog – LOL. I’ve not been there for over a  year!. I only have 36 items as I left off the biggies like extensive travel as I knew they wouldn’t be possible within the 1001 days (plan vs wishlist). I have only 233 days to go (about the same as you) and nothing ticked off, although a few of them could be. My number 36 is to get Sally Whittle to follow me on twitter, that’s how much I was into blogging – LOL again. My biggest downfall at the beginning was that you can always re-set it to start again. I did this regularly back in 2011. Here’s my tip: Get to the end and re-set. 2002 days sounds perfect. 

  4. Angela @Little Apple Tree

    I think I’ve pretty much given up on my Day Zero project–I may try re-starting it at some point in the future.  I just wrote the list, and then forgot that I was supposed to be working towards all these little goals.  

    Somewhere there must be a mystical artefact that will turn me from a lazy girl into a laser-focused goal-crushing machine, but I’ve yet to stumble across it!

  5. Ben

    I guess the reality is we don’t ever do everything on the list, but just stopping and thinking about what to put on it means we may do more than just drift along. I have a bucket list on my blog of things I want to see and do, I try to read it every so often to remind me of the big things I want to achieve that get lost in the day to day.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

%d bloggers like this: