If the 80s held fond memories for you, chances are you “like totally” remember watching The Breakfast Club, The Karate Kid and Fast Times at Ridgemont High, “dude”. Maybe you were into Super Mario Brothers or spent time listening to Cyndi Lauper and Prince on your “rad” Walkman?

Fast forward to today. Your life is very different. You’re responsible for bringing up your children and may even be caring for your aging parents or helping them out in some way. It’s time to start thinking of all those “responsible” things you’ve been putting off. Seriously, if something happened to one of your parents today, how would your life be impacted? Do you know if they have their plans in order if something happened to one or both of them? Would you know where to find their documents? Do you know what they would want if they couldn’t speak for themselves?

And how do you begin to have that conversation? It can be uncomfortable to know how to approach the subject. How do you do that? One approach I suggest is to first tackle these things for yourself. Get started now. Prepare your own advance directives, choose your health care proxy, complete your estate planning, your will and name your durable power of attorney.

Once you have completed yours, you can speak from experience. You can show your family your plans and ask them if they have theirs. You can share your thoughts about what you hope for your children if something happened to you and ask them if they thought about this for themselves. Lead by example. And then you can share your tips for success with others in your circle of friends and family.

Instead of wishful thinking without the action, take the first steps in planning responsibly for your future. Then you can kick back and take a “chill pill” knowing you have your assets covered and your wishes documented.

“You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.” – Abraham Lincoln

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