Over 90% of deaths are preceded by an illness. After first diagnosis of a serious illness, but when death is not yet a threat, you can develop habits to make that time in your life have quality. Living a quality life to your final breath is something we all can do, if we consciously prepare to do that. It isn’t the easiest thing to do, but all it takes is to live your life in the moment.
That means you have no unfinished business in your mind. Your relationships with the important people in your life are complete. Your hopes and dreams can feel fulfilled and you comfortably can rest in the moment. Otherwise, you are stuck in your mind, which make you unable to receive what comes next. That would give you time to consciously say goodbye to those you love and be in a place to receive their goodbyes.
This is a difficult subject to talk about because it makes most people feel uncomfortable. Once you are truly prepared to die, you don’t have to talk about it. To get ready though, you may have to think and talk about it. There are three stages in this preparation; 1) once you receive the diagnosis 2)dealing with your illness and 3) approaching death.
How you receive the news sets the tone of how you will deal with the first stage of this process. You might feel this is not the time to deal with personal growth, but the fact is you are entering a new significant stage. This is the last time you have to consciously deal with how to meet challenges, like chronic illness and facing death.
We think to our self-image and making your self-image conscious helps you deal with the challenge of approaching death. A positive self-image can reduce fears and resistance in dying. It helps you to communicate with people without manipulation and fears, which helps you to receive and listen without your mind racing.
The next stage is an extension of dealing with life from a positive self’s perspective. This is how you deal with your illness. You learn how to meet the challenges of dealing with an illness from your Positive Self. Instead of being defeated by your illness, you learn incredible life lessons. Being conscious in this stage can help you to live a quality life as you cope with your illness. A quality life doesn’t depend on the health of your body; it depends on your consciousness. Now to take that consciousness into the final stage; this is preparing to die.
Linear thinking cannot prepare you as well as being creative. Linear thinking is a left brain function and is often cut off from the rest of your brain. Creativity is a right brain function. It is connected to the right brain and the emotional part of the brain and bodily functions. You need your whole being to approach death, which involves your whole brain.
Any creative approach can work- poetry, short stories, creative imagery-as long as it expresses your experience of what you are dealing with. Readers are encouraged to write your own creative approach to dying. When you do, you will shift from learning about someone else’s approach into manifesting your own. Each step in this venture will deepen how you literally feel. Your approach, when conscious, can take you right to the threshold of death. Creativity provides a cushion you can fall back on and an endless process until your last breath.
To further understand the positive self, go to Marc’s book “The Positive Self: Change Your Self-Image and Your Change Your Life.” To learn how to utilize inner wisdom to deal with your illness, go to Marc’s book, “A Healthy Way to be Sick.” To develop a conscious approach to dying, go to Marc’s book, “The End: A Creative Approach to Death.” All books are at Amazon/Kindle.com.
© 2015 Marc Lerner

Author's Bio: 

Marc Lerner has been a life skills coach for 25 years and has been working to empower patient participation, to improve the quality of life and to improve attitudes when facing challenges. Marc has had multiple sclerosis since 1981. He had to tap inner resources to cope with his illness because he could not rely completely on help from medical professionals.
In 1982, Marc founded Life Skills Institute and served as its president to 2013. Through the Institute, he worked for 25 years at the VA with veterans with PTSD, cancer and AIDS patients and the mentally ill homeless. In 2002, Marc was named Outstanding American with Disabilities Business Person in Los Angeles.
In 2008, Marc’s health worsened and he was forced to retire from giving seminars. At that time, he began to reflect on what he had learned and to write books about the struggle he was in. His first book, A Healthy Way to be Sick, was based on the struggle he was going through, but was written for people with similar struggles. He felt, no matter what condition a person was in, they could go deep and tap the wisdom of the body.
His second book, The Positive Self: Change Your Self-Image and You Change Your Life, focused on the part of us that can best deal with struggles. This part of us naturally seeks a quality life under any circumstance. As his health deteriorated, he wrote The End: A Creative Approach to Death. His insights were shared through creative writing and poetry.
These books are available as e-books at Amazon/Kindle.com.
Today, Marc deals with his struggle with a high priority on the quality of his life.