TED talks – TED stands for Technology, Entertainment and Design – are all about ideas worth spreading. Some popular TED talks online focus on death and end-of-life issues.
On September 12, 2015, I’m going to present a TEDxABQ talk about taking death out of the closet, talking frankly with your family and making end-of-life plans, including wills and trusts, advance medical directives and pre-need funeral planning.
The talk will be video recorded and put online after the event. This talk will help persuade the majority of people who haven’t made their arrangements to get in gear. Here’s a sample from the talk, which will be about six minutes long:
These days, heart attacks, strokes and cancer are no longer death sentences… at least, not immediately. Despite dramatic improvements in medicine, humans still have a 100% mortality rate.
Yet, less than one-third of us make end-of-life plans – wills or trusts, advance medical directives and preneed funeral planning. That leaves 70 percent unprepared and devastated, not if but when there’s a death in the family.
Why are these planning rates so low? We’re terrified of death.
We’re afraid of change and the unknown. The Tarot card for Death actually represents change, transition and transformation. Change can be seen as positive or negative. As long as we live, change, like death and taxes, is inevitable.
We’re afraid of pain and disability before death. Woody Allen said, ““Death doesn’t really worry me that much, I’m not frightened about it… I just don’t want to be there when it happens.”
We’re afraid of loss and being forgotten. Americans are great at acquiring. We’re not very good at letting go.
How can we release our fears and live more fully? Let’s take death out of the closet and talk.
The funny thing about death… most people don’t find anything funny about it. As a death educator, I use funny films to teach about serious subjects. You laugh, you relax, you learn.
The talk will include a clip from the comedy Undertaking Betty and end with a call to change that 30/70 pre-planning ratio to 70/30 or better. Once the video is online, consider using it as a compelling case for getting end-of-life affairs in order.
Gail Rubin, CT, is a death educator Certified in Thanatology: Death, Dying and Bereavement. She’s a speaker who uses humor and funny films to attract people to discuss mortality, end-of-life, business communications, estate and funeral planning issues. Author of the award-winning book A Good Goodbye: Funeral Planning for Those Who Don’t Plan to Die, she co-authored the new free eBook, Celebrating Life: How to Create Meaningful Memorial Services, with Templates and Tips. She is a regular contributor to the AAEPA blog. Download a free planning form from her website, http://www.AGoodGoodbye.com.
Academy Guest Blogger
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
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