By Roz Jones
Thinking of end-of-life matters can feel uncomfortable and cause some anxiety. It isn’t common to think about the end of life when it seems so far off. Planning for retirement might feel more comfortable because the thought of spending time doing the things you love – rather than working towards retiring – is exciting and rewarding after a long career; however, it’s just as important to think about and plan for the inevitable winding down of life.
There’s no easy way to think about death or even an illness or accident. It’s much easier to think about being vital and healthy. Focusing on health is important. Doing the things you can to stay healthy – like eating right, exercising, and keeping a healthy mindset – is sure to help keep you fit and focused on a great life. Not thinking about end-of-life matters won’t make the inevitable any easier or make it go away. One thing we all have in common is we are going to pass away – we just don’t know when or how. It’s life’s biggest personal mystery.
End-of-life planning matters because there are many things you can do to make things easier for yourself and your family. There are steps you can take to be ready if/when you face an accident, an illness, or your life ends. Many people are afraid to “tempt fate” or “bring about what you think about.” These are immature ways of looking at a very mature subject.
End-of-life planning isn’t just about your funeral. It’s about important aspects of living such as:
- Protecting your assets
- Having important medical documents if you are unable to communicate
- Having income for retirement, illness, or long-term care
- Communicating your wishes with others
- Pre-need funeral planning
It might feel strange thinking about or taking action regarding end-of-life matters but, like anything else, the more you engage in the tasks, the easier and more natural they will feel. Before you know it, speaking to professionals about your needs and sharing the information with your family will feel a lot less odd and a lot more responsible – something to be proud of.
Don’t let the fear of the unknown and the morbid aspects of end of life planning scare you. Be brave and do what it takes to plan ahead so you and your family are prepared and ready when your start to face end-of-life issues.