Time to plan

Planning well can ensure the best possible experience of life right to the very end.

Planning well is the key to ensuring that you have control over your living and dying in later years, and how you will be remembered into the future.

You may think that completing your Last Will & Testament and putting a few stickers on special items to be passed on is planning well, but there is much more to consider if you really want to experience quality of life right to the end.

Planning well requires you to firstly understand what your options are, and from there you can make choices that suit you and your desired lifestyle, then you need to find the right planning tools to help you communicate those choices to those who need to know: your family, loved ones, doctors, palliative care support team etc.

Planning well and discussing it with your loved ones also helps them to be better prepared, and discussing your clearly-outlined wishes with your doctor, your aged care facility staff and other relevant medical practitioners heightens their ability to follow through on them.

Understanding the terminology

There are so many terms we have to understand if we want to feel empowered in later years. We’ve provided a glossary of these terms to help you understand these terms.

Access our Glossary of Terms or access our Living Well; Dying Well newsletter for more detailed information on the terminology you need to understand. Sign up here to receive the newsletter free.The Rest Easy Kit includes this information as a bonus.

In the meantime, here are a few to start you off:

Power of Attorney: When you appoint someone to act on your behalf in your financial dealings for a certain period of time – e.g. if you were going overseas.

Enduring Power of Attorney: When you appoint someone to  act on your behalf for your financial dealings in the long term (usually when you have lost ‘capacity’ to make financial decisions).

Enduring Guardian: When you appoint someone to act on your behalf in deciding what health and well-being actions are to be taken in the long term, when you no longer have the capacity to do so.

Advance Care Planning: The health care choices you make should your health fail in later years. These can then be inserted into your Advance Care Directive.

Remember, planning well by learning about the issues and choices you have as you grow older provides you with options that will empower you in your later years.