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Getting Organized and Creating an Exit Strategy

Linda Chamberlain, Florida Medicaid Elder Law Attorney

Linda’s Words of Wisdom blog

I can’t plan for 2016 but……I can get organized.

There is no way I could have predicted, thank goodness, the major events in my life over the last five years.  My mother passed away with ovarian cancer, two of my sons got married, we had our first grandchild, my 91 year old Dad got remarried and moved, and one of my best friends died.

I keep a crystal ball in my office.  I often tell clients I meet with it’s not working today.  We will quickly look over at it and see right through it, it tells us nothing.  I’m actually glad about that because there are many events you simply cannot plan for and the anxiety of worrying about them happening is often worse than the actual event.

What I have realized over the last five years is that I can be more organized, and need to be more organized, to be prepared for what life brings my way.  I am tackling the piles of paperwork, documenting the many passwords and websites I use, and physically and electronically filing my documents and paperwork.  This is not a task that is complete in a day or week, and to be honest I am still working on it.

When my friend died I was truly amazed with the time he had taken getting organized and planning for his death.  While many of us glibly will state we are doing it and that we are prepared, in reality I find most people will not complete what is required while they are living. Many of us prefer instead to avoid thinking about it and leave many required tasks to our surviving loved ones.  It is easy to say “if” I die when there’s no doubt about it, it’s really “when” I die.

Getting Organized

Aging Wisely has developed a simple tool to help you start organizing your exit strategy.  We call it our questionnaire.  We have found clients appreciate our help completing and getting their information together.  The questionnaire takes you step by step through your personal information.  It helps you start thinking about “who” may help you. It reminds you of assets you may have to manage, and helps you evaluate your monthly income and expenses, so you will know what you have to spend on a monthly basis.  All information you need to get organized for your future as well as illness or your death.

Exit Strategy

I have to admit, I get tired of hearing about planning for my death.  I do like the idea of organizing my Exit Strategy – something about saying that makes me sort of smile.  I am going to tackle my Exit Strategy this year and get organized.  It will be useful for living and eliminate much stress I bring upon myself not being able to find things when I need them.  There will be many tips to share through the process, stay tuned.  I look forward to hearing your suggestions and comments regarding getting organized at  

Exit Strategy Workshop (aka What You Should Do Before You Get Sick)

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

1:00pm – 2:30pm

Aging Wisely office, 1180 Ponce de Leon Blvd., Clearwater, FL 33756

RSVP: 727.447.5845

Please join us for a free workshop focused on organizing your affairs, what decisions you need to make and how you may want to make them, categorizing and documenting your wishes, and tips and tricks on “really” getting it done.  A free organizational tool will be provided to all attendees. You will not want to miss it!  Limited to first 20 attendees.   

I look forward to you joining me on this journey throughout 2016.    Please stop back and check out my blog (you can sign up for our newsletter to get regular updates!) and as always, feel free to email me at


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