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What Matters Most: The Get Your Shit Together Guide to Wills, Money, Insurance, and Life's "What-ifs" Hardcover – March 19, 2019

4.5 out of 5 stars 139 ratings

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Editorial Reviews


“How strange to have been so conscious about money in life but lax about where it all goes when I die. That stopped the day I read Chanel’s book. How free I feel to have these tasks done.” — Vicki Robin, New York Times bestselling author of Your Money or Your Life

“There’s little point in worrying about a future death, but simple acts of planning can relieve your worries, protect and prepare you for what lies ahead, and give you a calmer and more peaceful today. These preparations are not only pragmatic acts, but sacred gifts to our future selves and to those we love who will survive us. What Matters Most is a reassuring, step-by-step guide to a better future in the midst of grief and loss.” — Katy Butler, author of Knocking on Heaven’s Door and The Art of Dying Well

“Chanel Reynolds took her own unthinkable tragedy and turned it into a rallying cry for us all to get our sh*t together before it’s too late. In What Matters Most, she is your funny, irreverent friend, who’s here to show you tough love. The time for death denial and keeping your head in the sand is over.” — Caitlin Doughty, New York Times bestselling author of Smoke Gets in Your Eyes

“Grief is a monster better confronted without a legal, financial and logistical mess left behind; Chanel’s wisdom is a gift to all future dead people wanting to lift some of the burden of loss off their surviving loved ones. What Matters Most offers you the chance to consider, and find, those critical answers.” — Rebecca Soffer, coauthor of Modern Loss: Candid Conversation About Grief. Beginners Welcome

“If anything will make you finally write a will, get life insurance, make a folder with all your passwords, or write letters to your loved ones, this remarkable book is it.” — CrossCut (Seattle)

“Reynolds’ story, told from the trenches of life, is powerful and wise. Her message--sort out your finances and get your end-of-life wishes in order before it’s too late--offers readers a generous opportunity to learn from her experiences and be more fully prepared.” — Shelf Awareness

“Reynolds provides not only sound counseling but a straightforward plan for when the unthinkable occurs.” — Library Journal

From the Back Cover

Trust me. You need this book.

On July 17, 2009, Chanel Reynolds’s husband, José, was struck by a van while cycling near their home in Seattle and died one week later. Just hours after the accident, Chanel realized that she was completely unprepared for what came next: What was the password to his phone? Were their wills legally binding? How much insurance did they have? Could she afford the house? And what the hell was probate anyway? Simply put, she didn’t have her shit together.

As it turns out, neither do most of us. We’re too busy and too overwhelmed, or we don’t know where to start. But here’s the thing: you can’t half-ass the important stuff, and hoping for the best is not a plan. Chanel learned that lesson the hard way—so you don’t have to.

Drawing on her firsthand experience; expert advice; and the unparalleled resources of her celebrated website, Get Your Shit Together, Chanel offers an honest, no-nonsense guide that provides step-by-step practical advice to make getting your shit together easier than signing up a kid for summer camp. In What Matters Most, you’ll learn how to

Prioritize: triage urgent items and create an it-can-wait or screw-it list.

Plan forward: create a will and a living will.

Cover your ass: update your (or finally get the right) life insurance policy.

Get your money sorted: start or grow an emergency fund and savings.

Make a “what-if” list: have a watertight emergency plan.

Round up details: track essential information, accounts, and passwords.

Grounded and irreverent, Chanel’s no-BS voice guides you through planning for life’s toughest moments with authority, candor, intimacy, and humor. What Matters Most will help you get the important shit done to avoid unnecessary suffering and confusion before and after disaster strikes or life suddenly goes sideways.

A gift for whatever they need

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Harper Wave (March 19, 2019)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 352 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0062689436
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0062689436
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1.1 pounds
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 6 x 1.13 x 9 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 139 ratings

About the author

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Chanel Reynolds is the founder of the internationally praised website Get Your Shit Together (, co-founder of and has motivated millions of people to prepare for life’s major curveballs. She has been featured in the New York Times, NPR, CBS This Morning and press worldwide.

She was the founding Managing Director of WorldChanging (Worldchanging: A User's Guide for the 21st Century), former Co-Executive Director of Home Alive (Home Alive: Art of Self Defense) and has used her storytelling and digital expertise to help clients such as Nike, Samsung, Microsoft, and Starbucks. Find her at or follow her on Facebook @GYSTnow.

Customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5
139 global ratings

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