Dying well: what's your plan?

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NO NEED TO BE SAD: Making end-of-life and funeral arrangements can save your family from the emotional burden.

NO NEED TO BE SAD: Making end-of-life and funeral arrangements can save your family from the emotional burden.

We spend a considerable amount of time planning birthdays, weddings, anniversaries and other significant life events. But have you ever thought about how you would like to die or what kind of funeral service you want?

While we're all familiar with the idea of living well, dying well is a bit of a strange concept. Our superstitions and fears about dying, and the discomfort we feel about discussing death, often mean we avoid the topic completely.

Dying to Know Day, on Thursday, August 8 is the perfect opportunity to change that.

"The aim of Dying to Know Day is to encourage people to talk more openly about death and dying, and talk about end-of-life plans," says Olsens Funerals managing director Steve Kellaway.

"These conversations are important and the Olsens team believe they should be embraced."

Mr Kellaway said too many people are farewelled in a way that may not be consistent with their wishes.

"By openly discussing your end-of-life choices with your loved ones and pre-planning your funeral service, this can be overcome," he said.

And planning your own funeral doesn't need to be sad. "Think of it as a way to make important decisions and arrangements yourself and save your family the emotional burden," Mr Kellaway said.

Olsens Funerals has been caring for families in the Sutherland Shire since 1944 and remains an independent, family-owned and run funeral business. Mr Kellaway is the third generation of his family to take the helm at Olsens Funerals.

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"We don't believe that planning a funeral service should simply be a case of ticking items off a standard list," Mr Kellaway said.

"The days of every funeral service fitting the same mould are long gone, and there's definitely no one size fits all.

"You can be as true to tradition or as imaginative and creative as you like when making arrangements."

Mr Kellaway said the Olsens' team were flexible and creative when it came to working with families to craft the most fitting funeral service.

"The families in our community represent many customs, cultures and traditions, and we're committed to ensuring that the full spectrum of needs are fulfilled," he said.

Mr Kellaway encouraged people to take the opportunity to talk more openly about death, dying and end-of-life planning.

"We know how important it is to have the right information on hand when you're having these discussions," he said. "At Olsens Funerals, we can provide all the information you need about putting future plans in place."

To find out more phone Olsens Funerals on 9545 3477.