How to Plan a Funeral or Memorial Service Without Losing Your Mind

The grief and stress that comes with planning a funeral or memorial service can get overwhelming.

TUT Staff

The grief and stress that comes with planning a funeral or memorial service can get overwhelming. Here are some tips for keeping the pressure under control if you’re ever expected to coordinate an event for a deceased loved one.

Check the deceased’s will.

Some people have specific wishes for what service they want to be held for them when they pass away. To make sure that you fulfill your loved one’s desires, check over their will before you start planning anything. They may have made requests for how they want you to handle their service, which may include different types of ceremonies or even no ceremony at all. You should respect the life of the deceased and carry through with their requests, no matter if it’s not how you would handle it yourself.

Choose what type of service to hold.

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If there are no requests to fulfill, you may have to decide the best type of service to hold. Think about what they would have wanted as well as what the deceased’s family would want. Memorial services are personal experiences and vary from family to family.

One of the most common services for the deceased is a funeral. Funerals are usually soon after a person passes away with the body often put on display for final viewing. You can, however, have a funeral service for a cremated person. Contact the cremation service you plan to use to see how they handle funeral services. If you don’t already have a cremation provider picked out, Legacy Cremation Services is a reliable source for finding one.

If you don’t want to hold a funeral, you can opt for a memorial service or celebration of life. A memorial service allows loved ones to remember the deceased and is often held instead of a funeral or for those who couldn’t make the funeral. A celebration of life is usually more lighthearted than a memorial or a funeral service, where guests make toasts to the deceased and have a more lively celebration in their honor.

Ask for help.

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To reduce the chance that you get overwhelmed, ask family members to help you plan the service. Delegating tasks to others not only lifts the pressure off you, but it gives others a chance to get involved and add touches to the event that you may not have forgotten to include.

Splitting the responsibility of planning a funeral also lessens the financial burden on you. Nobody should have to deal with the financial stress of planning a memorial service all by themselves, so asking for help with the planning and costs of the event is entirely reasonable.

Plan the event.

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A lot of planning goes into coordinating a memorial or funeral service, which is why delegating tasks is so beneficial. You’ll have to plan the date and time of the service, where to hold it, who to invite, and what decorations to use. Again, don’t hesitate to ask loved ones for help. Some people will appreciate the chance to help put the memorial together in whatever way they can.

Some funeral homes will help with decorations, photography, and videography. Check your local funeral homes and cremation providers to see what services they include with different plans. The more help you can get, the less stress for you and your family.

Take care of yourself.

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Planning a funeral or memorial service is stressful. Add grief and mourning to the mix, and the experience can be harmful to your mental health. Make sure you set aside time to take care of yourself while you make funeral arrangements.

For additional help, consult a therapist for guidance. If you don’t have the time to find a therapist in person, use an online therapist locating company like With Therapy. They will match you with the best therapist for your needs, and can even find you counseling with therapy pups for extra-cheerful therapy sessions.