If the scenario ever came up that you had to quickly decide what you’d want to see, do or accomplish in your final 24 hours on this planet, then you definitely want to start making that bucket list right now.
But, since it would be such short notice, there are some questions you may want to ask yourself. Like, who or what is most important to me? Or, how many things do I want to accomplish with these final 24 hours?
Jump ahead to these sections:
- Ideas to Connect With Family or Friends
- Ideas to Connect With Hobbies or Interests
- Ideas to Connect With Nature
- Ideas to Connect With Spirituality or Religion
If your things aren’t in order, you can also start to do some end-of-life planning so that if the time ever exists, you’ll be fully prepared rather than waste your hours on planning and plotting.
Ideas to Connect With Family or Friends
Family, friends, and even pets help you maintain your faith, everyday sanity, and happiness. They help you overcome pitfalls and equally lift you from dark crevices. For these reasons and more, it’s important to consider how you’ll want to leave this behind.
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1. Play hooky together
If you’re like me, there are several times every month when you’d love to do this anyway, so you probably have some good ideas already.
If not, here’s a couple you want to keep in your quiver:
- Take a Sunday drive. Even if it’s Monday, taking a drive in the country can make all the stresses go away. Just crack open the windows and stop to take pictures every chance you get.
- Go to a movie. And then when you get there, buy everything that’s bad for you and eat it unapologetically.
- Have a meal at your anniversary spot. Some people have a special place they like to go on anniversaries. So, if you have one, and even if you have kids, take everyone there for a life-celebration meal.
2. Call everyone on your list
Communication is part of what makes us human. It’s also what family and friends cling to in the darkest moments after you’ve gone. So finding space to allow these kinds of memories to happen will bring them solace when they need it most. But who do you call?
- Step 1: Make a priority list.
- Step 2: Call your family and friends.
- Step 3: Don’t be afraid to listen.
- Step 4: Make sure that they give you room to talk, too.
3. Spend time with them
Not everyone lives nearby their relatives these days, so for some people, this might mean a quickly planned road trip to get there in time. For others, it might mean that you’ll be staying close to home and snuggling up next to your partner and/or pets.
Here are some ideas to consider regarding spending some quality time with loved ones:
- Take your dog(s) to the beach. Or the mountains. Just go to that one place where they grin from ear to ear and always wind up more tired than doing anything else and don’t leave until they’re done.
- Bring or make a fancy meal and some great wine. Food feeds the soul and brings the family together around the dinner table. Plus, when people eat a satisfying meal, they just feel good inside.
- Include lots of laughter. If you have decided to keep the impending fate a secret, make sure to finally leave the impression you would want them to always remember.
Ideas to Connect With Hobbies or Interests
Do all the things that fill your heart no matter what. After all, just because it’s your last day, doesn’t mean that you can’t revel in all of the time and effort you’ve put in learning how to get good at what you love.
4. Go sailing
If you love to sail, this would probably be first on your list any day of the week no matter if it’s your final day or not. However, there are two big decisions to make:
Are you sailing into the sunset alone? Maybe a nice scotch might add well to your evening adrift. Better yet, stop at the restaurant nearest to the harbor and bring along a beautiful meal.
Are you sailing with a companion? If you’re expecting a Hollywood ending where the two of you die simultaneously and together, then consider a few items to help make the trip romantic up until the final moment.
5. Go birding
Maybe you’ve collected all of the lifers that you think you’re going to get, but why waste a sunny day sitting inside, when you can be out taking pictures or looking through your binoculars?
Today of all days means that there’s definitely no rush. So, bring a blanket and pillow and quietly wait for Mother Nature to come out of hiding.
6. Donate all of your hobby supplies
Instead of the trash heap, why not make sure all of your beloved hobby supplies go somewhere they’ll be appreciated? All you need to do is set up a convenient time to pick up or drop-off. But who do you call?
- Art teachers
- Music instructors
- Church parsonage
- Retirement center
- Garden club
- Family and Friends
Ideas to Connect With Nature
Whether you prefer then sand and waves, the trees and forests, or the river and its bounty, below are perfect ways for you to connect with nature on a deep and soulful level.
7. Sunset and sunrise at the beach
Would you like to beautifully experience sunrise and sunset before your final day has come to a close? If so, you’ve got some choices to make about logistics, comfort, and company.
- Choose your location and pay attention to the tide calendar.
- Bring a chair, blankets, and pillows—make your time warm and comfortable.
- Pack a lunch and dinner.
- Bring a book and magazine, radio, and battery charger.
- Make sure to spend the day with the person you love the most.
8. Spend the day on the river
Does a day on the river sound like the best idea ever? If so, here’s a few options to fill your day.
- Run a quick Internet search on river rafting to see how far you’ll need to drive and how much time to block out of your day.
- Spend an afternoon casting. Here, the repetitive movements will act like a metronome to your final thoughts.
- Rent a paddleboard and paddle the calmer parts of a river.
- Bring food for a grill out.
Tip: Don’t forget to bring warm clothes for sunset and enough bug spray to last an evening’s fire.
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9. Practice shinrin-yoku (forest bathing)
Here’s an idea that will provide you with calmness and relief faster and easier than any other activity outside. In just four easy steps, you can shrug anxiety and stress:
- No distractions are allowed, so leave them in the car.
- Wander without direction or intent.
- Use your five senses to take note of what is around you.
- Sit and be quiet—then take note of how the Earth responds.
Ideas to Connect With Spirituality or Religion
Whether you plan on connecting with your spiritual leader, community members, or simply spending time in silent reflection, we’ve got a few tips to help you better define that time so that it serves for both you and those around you.
10. Hike to top of the tallest mountain with your pastor
If you have an active church leader who loves the outdoors as much as you, then ask them if they’d join you on one last hike together. The metaphor won’t be lost on the situation, nor will the chance to spiritually connect with someone who’s been your guide along the way.
So, consider these topics for your journey:
- What do you plan on asking God when you finally meet?
- Will you help make sure the community takes care of my family?
- Why does God allow death and suffering?
- If God rules over both heaven and hell, then are we really at war?
- Will God’s grace alone save me?
12. Read a religious text to some local elders
Taking time to help people in need not only helps them through their day, but in this case, it would also serve your needs in the process as well. Here are a few spots where you can help each other.
- Convalescent home. Healing and recovery can happen much quicker, especially when there are helpful hearts around to better facilitate the process. And while you may be living out your final day, there’s always some room to help others in need.
- Retirement facility. Everyone loves visitors, especially those who live at retirement facilities as it can get pretty monotonous looking at the same four walls day after day. So, here’s another place that would welcome your prayers with open arms, particularly for those with vision issues.
11. Find prayer or meditation
Before tomorrow comes, you can take some time to sit quietly in a pew at church or on a yoga mat at home. If you devote your thoughts to the peaceful inner workings of your faith and mind, you can enter your last day with happiness instead of regret. Some questions you might ask yourself are:
- How well have I achieved my goals?
- How well have I loved myself, family, and friends?
- Do I take comfort in the life I have lived?
- Am I at peace with my decisions in life?
Once you have answered these questions honestly and fully, you’ll be able to get up from your position and feel confident about tomorrow.
The Final Events
Take a look at anyone’s bucket list, and it’ll go on for pages. But don’t give them much time to act, then things change quickly. What you do will keep you nearby home, among family and friends, and most importantly, alongside your faithful furry companions.