My Impossible List

“It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.”
– Walt Disney
patrick choi float in the air

Not your plain ol’ bucket list

Have you ever thought to yourself “Huh, that would be an awesome thing to happen in my life some day. I should put that on my bucket list.”? What happened to that list? A lot of people just write down a list of things they want do or accomplish. However, often, the very same people won’t touch that list ever again and they forget all about it.

Why is that? Well, the reason is not necessarily that they are too lazy. It is just the way the list is set up. The bucket list only contains one-off events that add up to a highlight reel. In contrast, the Impossible list is about the journey. It’s an ever-evolving list which grows with you.

Your final goals may seem far away and even impossible, but using the Impossible List you don’t have to wait until completion to cross out your goal. You can start small. And with each milestone you cross out, you get closer and closer to your seemingly impossible goal.

What you can do to get started:

So think about all the things you could do, how each area in your life should look like. Don’t think about whether it’s feasible or not. Just do a brain dump exercise for 20 minutes. You might also imagine your daily life in the future and write down in detail how every hour looks like.

Even if you don’t know what you truly want yet. Don’t worry. Things will change. But just asking yourselves such questions and formally writing them down can give you some clarity and a good enough starting point.

Once you’ve written it all down, you can start forming your Impossible List by splitting it into different categories like I did below.

I first discovered the Impossible List by watching Thomas Frank from collegeinfogeek, who then got the idea from Joel Runyon at ImpossibleHQ.

My Impossible List

Current Focuses:

  • Reading every day
  • Code every day
    (Currently enrolling in the Harvard CS50 course taught by David J. Malan)
  • Improve videography and photography skills
  • Practice both Cantonese and Spanish
  • Building an online presence
  • Run regularly (Strava Profile)

Last 5 Completed Goals/Achievements

  1. Completed the Starting Up online course (entrepreneurship/startup journey from beginning to end) (28.03.2021)
  2. Selected for the E|2|C program of the Campus Founders where I am trained to become a junior (startup) coach (18.03.2021)
  3. Sparked an interesting conversation with the Finns on Reddit, which then got trending. It was a serious topic about human rights. (03.2021)
  4. Get a 1.0 (A+) in Intro to Computer Science -> Top 8% among 350+ students (I was positively shocked) (03.2021)
  5. Nominated for abroad studies at the triple-crown business school Hanken School of Economics in Helsinki, Finland (02.2021) 

(Last update: 13.04.2020)

Life Goals

  • Become first university graduate in the family (TUM B.Sc.)
    • First semester
    • Second semester
    • Third semester
    • TUM Research Assistant at Global Center for Family Enterprise

Fitness/Sports Goals

  • Playing table tennis competitively:
    • reach ~1200 TTR (table tennis ranking points)
    • earn a medal at the district tournament 2017 (:U18, bronze)
    • become team district champion of season 2018
  • Run 5K (first recorded one on November 24, 2017):
    • One of the earliest: ~6min/km (01.04.2018)
    • Current record: 23:04, ~4:37min/km (18.08.2020)
    • Current record: 22:10, ~4:26min/km (14.09.2020)
  • Run a “good” cooper test in 12th grade (~2700m in 12 min) (2019)
  • Run 10K:
    • First one with friend: 10.16K, 5:43min/km (26.07.2020)
    • Current record: 52:39, ~5:16min/km (15.08.2020)
    • Current record: 48/49min (04.10.2020)
    • Current record: 47:23, 4:44min/km (26.10.2020)
  • Run a half marathon (21.1 km):
    • First one (I did it!): ~ a little under 2h, ~5:38min/km (26.09.2020)
      Was in the worst possible weather, see more on Strava (feel free to connect too if you run)
    • New next record: ?
  • Transition from home workouts to the gym
  • Learn Skateboarding
    • (pro in commuting in the city to uni with a pennyboard)
    • Ollie
      • on grass (28.03.20, Day 2)
      • on paved ground (01.04.20, Day 5)
      • on smooth surface
      • rolling
  • Learn calisthenics
  • Learn to dance (urban/hip-hop/breaking)

Professional Goals

  • Personal website:
    • Start your first website (March 1, 2020)
    • Launch your complete and fully optimized personal website (The overwhelmingly great support and reception left me simply ecstatic!) (April 4, 2020)
    • Survive a damn critical website error and rebuild (May 2020)
    • Surpass 1,000 total views on the website (blackout in May) (10.06.2020)
    • 20 Newsletter subscribers (04.07.2020)
    • Write more newsletter articles regularly, say 10
  • YouTube subscribers count (more under Videography in “Creative Goals”):
    • 30 (15.08.2020)
    • 100
    • 1,000
  • Launch your first shop selling design t-shirts etc (March 14, 2020)
  • Launch a substantial e-commerce
  • Make 1,ooo€ on your own
  • Work like in a startup team (: startup challenge, Team TATVA) (October 2019 – January 2020)
  • Work at/be part of a startup (4th member of Cuppa) (main task is to completely relaunch the existing website) (September 2020)
  • Work at/be part of an NGO (Viet Make It.) (Nov 2020 – April 2021)
    • Supported the team as Website Manager, optimizing digital presence
    • Community tripled in size during my time, though admittedly a lot of it was due to the great job done by the team 😀
  • Found a startup company
  • Give a TED Talk

Habit Goals

  • Practice Spanish & Japanese for 30 days on Duolingo (60-days streak as of now, May 02, 2020)
    • now I practice by writing with people on Tandem
  • Practicing Cantonese with the “Ling” app
  • Read every day for 30 days (starting fresh on April 10, 2020) (in continuation for eternity…)
  • Run regularly and often (Strava documentation)
    • Started from mid-June 2020
    • Current Mileage: 340km (26.10.2020)
    • Currently injured/have problems with my ankle, have increased stress there due to flat feet and the like. Can’t run for long without pain…first signs in December 2020…hanging in there

Creative/Skill Goals

  • Drawing:
    • Have a thick stack of drawings since childhood
    • Improve my drawing such that I can also comfortably sketch human anatomy without reference
    • Print out your first digital illustration
  • Photography:
    • Learn photography basics
    • Learn photo editing on Adobe Photoshop
    • Do professional photoshooting
  • Videography:
    • Learn to handle HitFilm Express, Adobe Premiere Pro
    • Produce a video on commission (:for TUM) (January 2020)
    • Publish your first YouTube video (02.08.2020 (teaser on 14.07.2020))
    • Make your second serious video project (currently in making)
    • Upload more frequently, at least weekly…
  • Graphic + UI/UX Design:
    • Create two new designs for every-day products
    • First prototype/wireframe of app (January 2020)
    • Larger UI/UX project
  • Languages:
    • German (Native)
    • Cantonese (HK) (~Native, technically~)
      • But still practice more (using Ling app)
    • English (fluent, best performance in high school)
    • Learn Spanish
      • for 5 years until high school graduation (~B2-level (upper intermediate))
      • got rusty, get back to it and improve
      • (…actually I have befriended quite a lot of cool Spanish-speakers :D)
      • only thing is I need to improve listening comprehension…
    • Learn Japanese (Beginner)
      • beginner on Duolingo
  • Coding/Programming:
    • Complete TUM’s edx course on object-oriented programming (Java)
    • Learn HTML/CSS fundamentals
    • (Re)Learn Java or JavaScript? Or Python?
      • tried a bit of everything, now Python for the time-being
    • Python (full Python course (4 hours worth of content))
    • Language R (Data Science) (part of study curriculum 2nd semester)
    • Language C (CS50 Harvard course by David J. Malan)
    • Java (OOP) (3rd semester)
    • Completed a programming group project with my team, we built a functional skydiving reservation system (logging in/registering, selecting group size, accessories, dates, companies, reserving/canceling etc…) (we received 1.0/A+) (January 2021)
    • Got a 1.0/A+ in Introduction to Computer Science (for non Informatics studies), top 8% among 350+ students (positively shocked) (February 2021)
    • Refresh and set on one language for mastery…
    • Currently doing the Harvard CS50 course, finished Week 8 out of 12 (as of writing: 13.04.2021) (super challenging yet fun, extremely valuable course)

Fun and/or “Insane” Goals

  • Go skydiving
  • Go camping and watch the starry night sky

Events to Attend

  • Attend Illenium Concert

Travel Goals

  • (Countries I’ve already been to: Germany (duh), Switzerland, Austria, France, Italy)
  • Visit Hong Kong (where my parents come from) (August, 2017)
  • Visit Macau (August 2017)
  • Visit Taiwan (August 2017)
  • Visit Spain (:San Sebastián) (May 2018)
  • Go on a Europe Interrail Trip (& vlog)
  • Visit Japan
  • …any specific recommendations from your side?

Other

  • Completed the Starting Up online course (entrepreneurship/startup journey from beginning to end) (28.03.2021)
  • Selected for the E|2|C program of the Campus Founders where I am trained to become a junior (startup) coach (18.03.2021)
  • Sparked an interesting conversation with the Finns on Reddit, which then got trending. It was a serious topic about human rights. (03.2021)
  • Get a 1.0 (A+) in Intro to Computer Science -> Top 8% among 350+ students (I was positively shocked) (03.2021)
  • Nominated for abroad studies at the triple-crown business school Hanken School of Economics in Helsinki, Finland (02.2021) 
  • Completed Ethics of AI course by University of Helsinki (01.2021)
  • Completed Fundamentals Of Digital Marketing course by Goolge (09.2020)