End of life planning is a difficult subject for many. So difficult, that the majority (64%) of people in the United States has no living will or estate will in place at the end of their lives. What this means is that the burden of making difficult medical and legal decisions for the incapacitated person falls to the family and the state court systems, often at great psychological, emotional, and financial expense for both.
Please explain and apply how each of the core values of Saint Leo University are fostered and cultivated by the personal decision of each of us to take responsibility to make certain these legal instruments are in place before the necessity of them comes to be. Please apply specifically the core values of Community, Respect, Personal Development, Responsible Stewardship, and Integrity.
End of Life Planning
It is critical for individuals to engage in end of life planning. Failure to engage in end of life planning leads to difficult times for family members and the loved ones. Making end of life decisions at an earlier time eliminates the need for families to involve the justice system in making these decisions. Involving the justice system is not only time consuming but also leads to psychological suffering among family members and high costs. Individuals should engage in discussions about end of life planning with family members at an early time. This paper is an evaluation of how the core values of Saint Leo University may help guide individuals in making end of life decisions at an earlier period.
The core value of community involves developing positive learning environments guided by Christian teachings. The core value of community encourages the development of a sense of unity, belonging, and interdependence among individuals (Saint Leo University, 2018). The goal is to foster positive relations among individuals and create environments that can transform the lives of individuals in positive ways. The core value of community fosters the development of close ties or relationships among individuals. Developing close ties can make it easier for individuals to make and share end of life plans with their families and loved ones. The core value of community encourages individuals to develop a sense of belong which is key in ensuring positive relationships among family members. Such members can be able to share end of life plans unlike in families where members are not on good terms.
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The core value of respect encourages individuals to treat others in honorable ways (Saint Leo University, 2018). Respect involves developing deep regard for others irrespective of the differences. Individuals should first learn to hold themselves with regard and honor. After this, it is possible to demonstrate respect to others. An individual may demonstrate respect by appreciating other people’s wishes, rights, competence, experiences, opinions, and their dignity. An individual who opts to uphold respect is able to develop harmonious relationships with others. The value of respect can enable an individual to listen keenly to others for their opinions or observations. This value can prevent an individual from looking down upon others. By taking into consideration the opinion of others, it is possible for an individual to develop effective end of life plans where all family members can feel they were included.
The core value of personal development emphasizes on personal growth with regard to mind, emotions, spirit, and body (Saint Leo University, 2018). Personal development concerns all those activities that can help in improving the quality of life of an individual. This may involve developing personal potential, talents, improving self-awareness, and fulfilment of life aspirations. Personal development enables individuals to achieve satisfaction in life. Personal development also encompasses feelings to do with the self, family members, friends, job, intimacy, and the community. Personal development can enable individuals to develop realistic goals in life, including making end of life decisions. An individual who has attained high personal development is better attuned to the realities of life and is thus likely to make end of life plans.
The core value of responsible stewardship is about acting responsibly at all times. Responsible stewardship calls for individuals to engage in responsible actions with regard to planning and use of resources (Saint Leo University, 2018). As responsible stewards, individuals are called upon to manage everything with utmost care and responsibility. As stewards, individuals hold the responsibility to take care of resources or things that are of value. Responsible stewardship also calls for accountability among individuals. As responsible stewards, individuals should learn to manage resources in a careful manner. Those who hold resources should be aware that all those resources belong to God, and their major role is to ensure care of the resources. Developing a personal sense of responsible stewardship can encourage individuals to develop end of life plans as a sign of responsible stewardship.
The last core value is integrity. This is a very important principle. Integrity concerns maintain honesty in everything that one does and upholding strong moral and ethical principles (Saint Leo University, 2018). Integrity also involves maintaining consistency in ones actions, principles, values, methods, and expectations. Maintain consistency encourages individuals not to rescind their stand if they belief what they stand for is morally right. Developing integrity is the hallmark of establishing trust in relationships. Integrity can help in building strong interpersonal relationships among individuals. High integrity can encourage individuals to develop end of care plans with their families or loved ones. Trust is critical in developing end of care plans.
Developing end of life plans earlier in life is critical to avoid future problems such as relying on the criminal justice system to solve family issues. End of life plans help in avoiding future problems by making sure that critical decisions are made earlier and while individuals can engage critical thought. The various core values discussed can help individuals to establish end of life plans at an appropriate period.
Saint Leo University. (2018). Core values.