_ This is a unique seminar that offers something that everyone needs to learn but that very know where to find: the knowledge of how to prepare for the last journey in a way that not only helps the ones you leave behind, but also helps you live better between now and whenever that end might occur, whether you are a young adult, in middle age, or an elder.
Conceived and created by a husband and wife team well-suited to the work (an elderlaw attorney and an MSW with many years' experience helping elders), Preparing for Departure ® involves you from the start, helping you explore your own values and think about your own end in a way that liberates and equips you to plan and prepare to live life to the fullest.
We developed Preparing for Departure ® after I found that most lawyers knew and cared the most about handling the property that people leave behind at death, rather than about helping people prepare for death in a way that honored their goals and values while they were still alive. Most of these attorneys offered little or nothing to help living people deal with the issues that arise before and at the end of life, except as they wound up connecting back to making plans for the money or the property -- the "stuff" as we call it.
Not surprising then that most lawyers are as unprepared for the end of life as everyone else. Estimates are that only 15% of the general public have wills . . . and that only 15% of lawyers have wills.
Not an estate planning course, Preparing for Departure ® does address making choices about how to dispose of what you will leave behind, and it will equip you to make an estate plan efficiently and confidently, and to decide whether to engage an attorney to assist you in that process.
But the course goes far beyond estate planning. Preparing for Departure ® helps you explore and address the more important emotional aspects of the one trip we're all going to take, along some path that few of us know in advance.
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by Susie Steiner, Guardian.co.uk (1.2.12)
A palliative nurse has recorded the top five regrets of the dying.
There was no mention of more sex or bungee jumps. A palliative nurse who has counselled the dying in their last days has revealed the most common regrets we have at the end of our lives. And among the top, from men in particular, is 'I wish I hadn't worked so hard'.
Bronnie Ware is an Australian nurse who spent several years working in palliative care, caring for patients in the last 12 weeks of their lives. She recorded their dying epiphanies in a blog called Inspiration and Chai, which gathered so much attention that she put her observations into a book called The Top Five Regrets of the Dying.
Ware writes of the phenomenal clarity of vision that people gain at the end of their lives, and how we might learn from their wisdom. "When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently," she says, "common themes surfaced again and again."
Here are the top five regrets of the dying, as witnessed by Ware:
1. I wish I'd had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
"This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it."
2. I wish I hadn't worked so hard.
"This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children's youth and their partner's companionship. Women also spoke of this regret, but as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence."
3. I wish I'd had the courage to express my feelings.
"Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result."
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
"Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying."
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
"This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called 'comfort' of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content, when deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again."