Have The Conversation.
We can’t control everything about our death. But if we communicate effectively, we make it more likely that our wishes for the end of life will be known and respected. Simply completing an advance directive does not ensure it will be respected. Recent studies indicate the single most powerful thing a person can do to improve the chance for gentle dying is --- simply and courageously --- to talk about it.
Effective communication with those who will be called upon to make decisions on our behalf is key to the likelihood that our wishes are carried out. Compassion & Choices offers a Good to Go Toolkit and Good To Go Resource Guide that help you define your priorities, understand who you need to talk with and come up with ideas on how to get the conversation rolling. We've also provided state-specific advance directives free of charge, available for downloading.
It is never too early to get started.