Procrastinators Unite: Why 30-Somethings Need to Plan End-of-Life Celebrations

The death-positive movement is gaining steam with millennials and only gets stronger with each aging generation. People want to change their thoughts about death, so responsibilities like writing wills aren’t as scary. You may feel more inclined to start planning your end-of-life celebration once you read why 30-somethings lead the trend.

1. Defines Your Spiritual Beliefs

Research shows a collective 35% of people between 30–49 aren’t sure if they believe in a god. If that’s something you haven’t thought much about by yourself, you likely haven’t discussed it with the loved ones who will plan things like your funeral and memorial.

Planning an end-of-life celebration gives you space to outline your spiritual beliefs. Your loved ones will use it as a guide to celebrate you according to your wants. They won’t accidentally disrespect your spiritual foundations because your end-of-life plans will tell them if you believed in anything and which religion or spirituality should guide their choices.

2. Cares for Your Loved Ones

Memorial services are traditional ways to remember someone who recently passed away. They often happen in funeral homes or churches and require formal clothing. End-of-life celebrations are more casual, which may suit your style as a younger person.

A laid-back gathering is an excellent way to care for your loved ones after you’re gone. You’ll invite them to grieve together by celebrating you in a way you would have loved. It’s a polite way to honor your wishes while ensuring no one mourns you alone. You can also help them symbolically release you into a peaceful afterlife by releasing floating lanterns or taking a memory walk around your neighborhood.

3. Recognizes Your Passions

Some people are uncomfortable with the idea of an end-of-life celebration because they never liked being the center of attention. If that’s how you feel, you can use the informal gathering to shift the focus. Write instructions for everyone to gather with a donation box and give money to your favorite charity. Your celebration can also be an event that raises awareness about a cause you loved, like a community walk or charity concert.

4. Can Arrange a Will Reading

Loved ones don’t always have to read their deceased family member’s will at that person’s funeral. Many states give people months to gather with an executor to read the document. Your end-of-life celebration could be where you prefer that to happen. Outline that wish in your celebration guidelines so your loved ones don’t have to worry about when to read your will respectfully.

5. Makes Will Creation Less Scary

Planning a party sounds much more fun than writing your will. The idea of dividing your assets and no longer being alive might make you uncomfortable. You’re not alone if that’s the case.

Make your will less intimidating by planning your end-of-life celebration first. It can be a big party where people bring delicious food and make a few drinks to put everyone at ease. Consider if you’d want a specific theme or venue.

Once you spend time planning a party for after your passing, thinking about death seems more practical than scary. You can more easily focus on writing your will so your loved ones know how you wanted your assets handled after they finish celebrating you.

6. Gives Loved Ones Extra Food

Psychologists know there’s a direct connection between negative emotions and changes in eating habits. People may eat more or less when they’re sad, but grief can also drain you of energy. Cooking might seem like an impossible feat. People bring meals like casseroles to remove that burden from grieving family members.

A celebration of life is a gathering that often involves catering. Your loved ones won’t have to worry about cooking; they can take leftovers home. You’ll provide for them that way after you’re gone, which may motivate you to plan the celebration sooner.

7. Puts Things Into Perspective

Thinking about your death makes other big life decisions seem more manageable. You might feel ready to consider starting a family if you’ve been delaying that choice or buying assets like a house to put into your will. Your thirties are a great time to do both.

8. Leaves No Question Unanswered

If you leave directions, your loved ones won’t have to wonder what you would’ve wanted for your celebration. Your notes outline how you want people to remember you. They’ll also provide crucial guidance for things like how much you would have spent on a celebration and if you would’ve included religious ceremonies. It’s always more helpful if loved ones have the most information possible for any gatherings after your passing.

Plan Your End-of-Life Celebration

Thinking about your death may seem intimidating, but it gets easier when you plan an informal gathering like an end-of-life celebration. Consider how you want loved ones to remember you and what matters most. Whether you want your celebration to focus on your spiritual beliefs, charities you loved, or a ceremony that helps everyone release their grief, they’ll appreciate your written guidance.

About The Author

Ava Roman (she/her) is the Managing Editor of Revivalist, a women’s lifestyle magazine that empowers women to live their most authentic life. When Ava is not writing you’ll find her in a yoga class, advocating for body positivity, whipping up something delicious in the kitchen, or smashing the patriarchy.