Dear 43 Things Users,

10 years after introducing 43 Things to the world, we have decided we have met our last goal: completing the incredible experience that has been 43 Things. Please join us in giving one last cheer to all the folks who have shared their goals with the world, as well as all the people who have worked at The Robot Co-op to build this incredible website. We won a Webby Award, published a book, and brought happiness to a lot of people.

Starting today, 43 Things users can export their goals and entries from the site. Starting August 15, we will make the site “read only”. 43 Things users will still be able to view the site and export their content, but we won’t be taking any new content from users. We hope to leave the site up for folks to see and download their content until the end of the year. Ending on New Year’s Eve takes us full circle.

It has been a long ride (one of our original goals was to "build a company that lasts at least 2 years” - we beat that one!) While we wish the site could live on, it has suffered from a number of challenges - changes in how people use the site, the advertising industry, and how search engines view the site. We wish the outcome was different – but we’ve always been realistic about when our goals are met and when they aren't.

As of today, you will be able to download your goals and entries. See more about that on the FAQ page. Thanks for 10 great years of goal-setting and achieving.

- The Robots.

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improve my phone anxiety


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Just an update:

I am still working on this goal and I’ll probably need to actively maintain this progress for a very long time. Yesterday I made a call to schedule some appointments AND I made this call at work (on my break) within earshot of a few other people. Last year this never would have been possible because my anxiety about phones was so severe. I wouldn’t even have been able to make this call at home in private. To some people it may seem like pretty minor thing and nothing to get excited about, but for me this is amazing and I am so proud that I have progressed this far. 4 years ago


I think at this point it’s safe to mark this as done. I have made remarkable improvements on this in the last 6 months and am no longer crippled by anxiety when dealing with phones. I still don’t like them, but I doubt that will ever change. I won’t hesitate to add this goal to my list again when I feel that I need to work on it more. 5 years ago


I had another phone interview today. And I was very nervous/anxious but NOT because of the phone… it was because I really want this job. I have been using the phone a few times last week to call about the job and set up an interview. I’m really happy with my effort, whether I get hired or not. 5 years ago


Update: I think I might be close to marking this as done in the next month or so. Although I still don’t like or enjoy using phones (I don’t think I ever will), I no longer feel anxious or panicky because of them. The most helpful thing that has influenced my improvement is the volunteer job that I have. In a single shift I have to make at least 30 calls to other volunteers, and also answer probably 20 incoming calls from clients, their families, and hospital staff. Because I am mostly dealing with other volunteers they are usually quite friendly and helpful people, and there are only a couple ones that are difficult to communicate with.

If I didn’t have this experience I would quite certainly be in the same state as I was 6 months ago. I still feel like I don’t make enough calls from home and I still screen my calls way too much. So that is something that I will have to continue to work on. But the anxiety level have gone way down regarding this. I will keep this goal up for a few more weeks, just to be sure.. 5 years ago


Still chugging along with this… although I don’t think I have made much significant improvement since my last entry on this goal. At least I haven’t regressed. I still feel like I’m not making enough personal phone calls; the only time I’m using the phone is if it’s absolutely necessary. I need to work on that. I will call my friend tomorrow… 5 years ago


More improvement. Somehow I feel like I am ready to mark this as complete… but I don’t want to yet. I could still very easily backslide or regress. Still too early.

Over the past week I’ve continued to make phone calls. I even had to call someone long distance to handle some business while I was away. I no longer feel the same intensity of anxiety before making the call. I just kinda get myself organized, think about what I need to say, then pick up the phone, dial the numbers and get ‘er done. The anxiety is still there to a degree but it’s much better. My phone interview that I did was obviously successful enough because I got a call back from the hiring manager, which was a major boost to my confidence. I have also gotten a lot accomplished via phone regarding school; this is stuff that never would have been possible without using the phone.
Some things I want to work on still:
  • Stop screening calls so much and just answer the damn phone.
  • Start making calls that aren’t absolutely necessary for my work or school life. I.E.- call some friends, family, businesses just because I want to and I can
  • Try to call rather than text 5 years ago


I had a telephone interview today, and I think I was actually less anxious than I would have been if it had been an in-person interview. Interesting. I’m pretty proud of myself for getting through it, regardless of whether I get the job or not. It was a good experience. 5 years ago


Still haven’t been able to talk to the advisor I mentioned in my previous post. She called me back at the worst moment possible and so I couldn’t pick up. Since then I have been forcing myself to call every day and try to talk to her, but she is never available.

I hate playing phone tag! I think I will just try to track her down in person.

EDIT: I phoned again today (8/11) and she finally answered! Success! 5 years ago


Major anxiety today when I phoned an employment advisor for some information. I phoned three times and got no answer, so I had to leave a message. If she doesn’t call me back I will phone again tomorrow.

I will NOT give up. 5 years ago


Another session of phone anxiety completed for the week (otherwise known as volunteer job #2). This time it was much easier, even though I was totally on my own and had to do some sudden problem solving… There was definitely less hesitation to pick up the phone and dial the numbers, and less rehearsing of my words. I have improved a little bit, but I still need much more work. Next step is to make more calls from home and in different settings. 5 years ago


Have made some improvement already… Yesterday I used the phone to set up a job interview. It made me anxious but I’m glad I did it, I don’t want to let those opportunities pass me by. Today I did a volunteer shift in which I have to answer an incoming phone line, and also coordinate, schedule, and call other volunteers. Part of the reason I accepted this volunteer job was because I knew I would have to be answering and using the phone primarily as a method of communication and it would force me to gain some experience that might help me get over my anxiety. As predicted, I was really uncomfortable, especially in the beginning because I had no idea what I was doing and the phone was ringing off the hook. But after a few hours I started to get used to it. My skills are definitely lacking, but I think I must have called at least 30 people, without causing any major blunders. I think that after a few more shifts of this (plus my other efforts) I will be much better. 5 years ago


This is a serious problem for me. I had considered adding it as a goal a long time ago, but I think I preferred to ignore it and not think about it or force myself to work through it. I have a very very strong dislike for phones. I have never been a really chatty person, so was never one of those stereotypical teenage girls who racks up her parent’s phone bill. But my problems really started a few years ago when I had an unwanted individual constantly calling me, which eventually lead to me screening every single call and avoiding answering phones at all costs. For years I didn’t have a cell phone, until my family got me a prepaid one as a birthday present. I keep it with me only for emergencies. I prefer any form of communication other than phone calls.

I think there are several factors that have facilitated this problem. I’m a socially awkward person and miscommunications are a regular part of my life. I’m terrible at making small talk with people I don’t know and I often end up saying something weird in an effort to avoid the awkward silence. I’m afraid of being judged, or put on the spot, or experiencing anything negative that will make my phone issues even worse. Not being able to read a person’s body language or see reactions on their face makes it tougher.

I realise that this is ridiculous; it inhibits me and removes me from a lot of opportunities. I expect to be working on this goal for a long, long time. I’m sure I will always have a dislike for phones to a certain degree, but I need to make some kind of improvement here. -Today I started by setting up a cordless phone in my room. 5 years ago

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