Final Countdown Checklist

As you reach the end of your life then there will be things you choose or need to deal with.

This list is designed to help you work through the areas that may need your attention. Some people refer to this as their 'before I die' checklist. It is often a mixture of very practical and deeply personal issues, emotions and wishes and varies from person to person.

Your checklist doesn’t have to be a written document; it could be a list of simple wishes in your head that you need to tick off before you feel ready to die. Your checklist will vary depending on how close you are to death and according to your personal needs.

  • Complete living will, if required.
  • Make will, recording your wishes for distribution of your assets after death. This is also where you express your preferences concerning your funeral arrangements.
  • Get together all personal paperwork such as passport, birth certificate, copy of will.
  • Compile an assets and liabilities form including a list of all bank accounts, life insurance policies, pensions, stocks, shares, credit cards, mortgage etc and associated details. List what will be paid off on your death and any benefits that those left behind may receive. List all financial liabilities including outstanding bills.
  • Make a list of any club memberships or subscriptions so they can be cancelled.
  • Place all important documentation and information in a locked box somewhere safe.
  • Names and contact details of solicitor and accountant if relevant.
  • List of people you wish to be notified of your death.
  • Say goodbye to all those people you want to say goodbye to.
  • Clear up any arguments and misunderstandings that you want to deal with.
  • Clear your physical space and ensure you have the things you want around you at the end.
  • Visit the places and do the things you wish, if you are capable of doing so.
  • Organise the care you want for the very end.
  • Consult a counsellor to help deal with your emotions and how you feel about dying.

Many people believe that a person has to be 'ready' to die. When it comes to making this list, do what feels natural and right for you. Relatives often report that their loved ones seemed less anxious after things were put in place and organised before death occurred, almost as if the person dying needed to finish a mental list of jobs before they felt ready to let go.