Death is always a sad thing, and it’s easy to get caught up thinking about how much we’ll miss our loved one or how much we’ll be missed that we sometimes forget to put things in order so that life after passing can be a little easier on those left behind. If you are aware of your own mortality and impending death, you may be feeling extremely overwhelmed or even disorganized about everything you have to get done before you die.
These are some reasons it is key to get your affairs in order before you pass away. That way, you can focus the time you have left on spending time with friends, family, and loved ones, as well as doing all the things left on your bucket list. This organizational aspect of dying is very important in order to avoid any additional grief or potential conflict, especially in cases where the deceased leaves behind significant wealth or significant debt.
If you find yourself at the end of your life, here are five things that are vital to have in order before you pass on.
Update Your Last Will
The most obvious step for getting affairs in order before you die is to create your will with the help of a lawyer and, if applicable, an estate planner. Think critically about who you’d like to receive what, and write it with intention. Your will is your final instructions for how to divvy up your life’s assets, so it is important that you find a trusted lawyer to help you make it.
1. Compile A List Of Debts And Assets
You will need to compile a list of debts and financial assets in addition to writing your will. This will tell your surviving relatives exactly what still needs to be paid, and what exists in your accounts. It is a good idea to include all necessary PINs and passwords, as well as at which banks or credit unions your accounts can be found. Make sure you are thorough with this so that your family does not encounter any surprises that you will not be around to explain.
2. Live Your Final Months With Intention
This tip might be one you do not think of initially when you contemplate the end of your life. You should examine your life’s experiences and make sure you have checked off any bucket list items that remain. If you are tight on cash, consider a viatical settlement so that you can fund a few of your last-minute dreams. A viatical settlement allows you to sell your life insurance policy if you no longer need it and can be a great way to get a lump sum of money to pay for everyday expenses, medical care, or to spend on bucket list experiences.
3. Be Open With Yourself And Your Family
Death is scary and can be dark to discuss with anyone. However, it is important that you are open about your feelings with yourself and with your family. Consider seeing a professional for your mental health needs. You do not have to go far for good mental health care. If you live in New York, you can find New York therapists in your area that specialize in end of life counseling or family therapy. Getting your mind right is an essential step to preparing for the end of your life.
4. Make Sure Your Family Is Aware Of Your Wishes
One final tip for preparing for death is to make sure your family knows what your final wishes are in regard to your funeral and your final resting place. Some folks even prefer to write a draft of their own obituary. Making sure your loved ones know exactly what to do when you die can make the whole process much smoother.