WHAT IS A EULOGY?
A eulogy is a speech or writing in praise of a person or thing, especially one that is dead. It is an opportunity to remember and share fond memories of the person or thing, and to express condolences to those who are mourning the loss. Eulogies are often given at funerals, but can also be given at other memorial services, such as a celebration of life.
Eulogies can be serious or lighthearted, and may be personal or impersonal. They may focus on one aspect of the person’s life, or paint a more complete picture. It is up to the eulogist to decide what to include, and how to best honor the memory of the deceased.
If you have been asked to give a eulogy, it is an honor. Take some time to prepare, and make sure that you are comfortable with what you are going to say. This is not a time for jokes or off-color stories. Keep in mind that your audience will be grieving, and they will be looking to you for comfort and reassurance.
A eulogy is a time to celebrate a life well lived. It is an opportunity to share memories, and to help others through their grief. So take your time, choose your words carefully, and make sure that you are honoring the memory of the person or thing in the best way possible.
A eulogy can be a part of your healing, and a beautiful way to reflect on the details that were most special about them.
EULOGY VS OBITUARY
There is a big difference between an eulogy and an obituary. An obituary is a factual account of someone’s life, while a eulogy is a more personal tribute that celebrates the life of the deceased.
An obituary usually includes basic information about the person’s life, such as their date of birth, place of residence, and occupation. It may also mention some of the deceased’s accomplishments and survivors. An obituary is typically written by a close family member or friend, and it is published in a newspaper or online.
A eulogy, on the other hand, is a speech or poem that pays tribute to the person who has died. It is often delivered at a funeral or memorial service, and it is typically written by someone who was close to the deceased. A eulogy should be personal and heartfelt, and it should capture the essence of the person’s life.
If you are asked to write a eulogy, it is important to take some time to reflect on the person’s life and what they meant to you. What are some of your fondest memories of them? What did they teach you? How will you remember them?
Writing a eulogy can be a difficult task, but it is also a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the life of someone you loved. Take your time, be honest, and speak from the heart.
THE PURPOSE OF A EULOGY
It is the best way to say goodbye is with words. Eulogies offer those in attendance a chance not only recall the departed’s accomplishments, but also comfort mourners during this difficult time by sharing cherished memories and giving tribute through language that pays homage
to them as well.
WHAT MAKES A GOOD EULOGY?
A good eulogy is both heartfelt and personal. It should capture the essence of the person being remembered, and convey the speaker’s own personal feelings about them. A eulogy should be positive and uplifting, celebrating the life that was lived. And finally, a good eulogy should be well-written and well-delivered, so that it can truly honor the memory of the person being commemorated.
A good eulogy will highlight all these things while also providing appropriate tears-shed over loss . It should be inspiring enough so people feel motivated not only grieve but find meaning in profound ways too!
A GOOD EULOGY SPEECH STRUCTURE
There is no single right way to structure a eulogy, but there are some elements that are often included. Here are a few tips to help you get started:
1. Start with an introduction.
This is your opportunity to set the tone for the eulogy and grab the attention of the audience. You might want to start with a personal story about the deceased, or share a memorable quote. Start a eulogy by introducing yourself and your relationship to the deceased. If you are an immediate family member, thank attendees for coming to the service, particularly those who have travelled from afar to be there.
2. Give an overview of the person’s life.
Include important milestones and accomplishments, as well as any personal details that will help paint a complete picture of the person’s life. Share personal stories, and the impact they had on the people around them.
3. Highlight special qualities and traits.
What made the person unique? What will they be remembered for?
4. Offer words of comfort and support.
This is your opportunity to offer condolences and words of wisdom to the grieving family and friends.
5. Conclude with a memorable statement.
End on a positive note, with a look towards the future. You might want to share a final story or quote, or simply express your hope that the person’s memory will live on. Read of a poem, song lyrics or verse, or an expression of gratitude for your loved one. It can highlight the main sentiment that you’d like attendees to remember about the departed.
A EULOGY SAMPLE OUTLINE
Using a eulogy sample outline is a good way to make a good speech. You can use the outline to help you write about the person who died. Remember, you only have 10 minutes for the whole speech, so you will need to think about how much time to spend on each part. There are three parts to a eulogy: introduction, body, and conclusion.
- First Section – Introduction: In the opening section, you need to cover a few basic pieces of information before moving onto the main section of the eulogy.
- Set the tone by beginning with a poem, quote, or scripture that was meaningful to the person.
- Names they were known by, including nicknames and maiden names.
- Cause of death (an optional detail).
- A brief insight into your relationship with the individual.
- Middle Section – Main Part of the Eulogy: Now that the introduction is over, you can move onto the most important part of the eulogy. This section will be the longest part of the eulogy. Many people choose to highlight a person’s life chronologically, or they choose a theme for the stories. The meat of the speech can include a variety of talking points:
- Major life events
- Stories or fond memories
- How the person affected others
- Childhood years
- Travel adventures
- Marriage and children
- Any other thoughts you want to share about the person
- End Section – Summarizing the Person’s Life: The end is typically the shortest section of the eulogy. This is a quick wrap-up that sums up a person’s life. Finish the eulogy with a few of these options:
- A final take away from your theme
- How you want family and friends to remember the individual
- What the person would want you to remember them for
- Quote, scripture, or song lyric
- Thank attendees for participating
HOW TO PERSONALISE THE EULOGY
Here are some tips on how to personalise a eulogy:
1. Think about what made your loved one special to you. What are some of your favourite memories of them?
2. Use these memories as inspiration for your eulogy. Share stories and anecdotes that will help others understand what kind of person they were.
3. Keep it positive. A eulogy is not the time to air grievances or speak negatively about the deceased. Focus on the good times and celebrate their life.
4. Personalise the eulogy as much as possible. Use your own words and avoid using generic phrases.
5. Practice beforehand. This will help you feel more comfortable when delivering the eulogy.
6. Ask for help if you need it. If you’re struggling to write the eulogy, ask a close friend or family member for assistance.
Writing a eulogy can be a difficult but rewarding task. By following these tips, you can craft a personal tribute that celebrates the life of your loved one and gives others a glimpse into what made them so special to you.
TIPS FOR WRITING A EULOGY
When you are asked to write and deliver a eulogy, it can be a daunting task. Here are some tips to help you get started:
-Start by writing down your thoughts and memories of the person you are honoring. Include special moments, shared interests, and anything else that comes to mind.
-Share your draft with friends or family members who knew the person well. Ask for their input and suggestions.
-Think about what you want to say about the person’s life and how you want to remember them.
-Keep your eulogy personal and from the heart. This is not the time for jokes or stories that might be offensive to others.
-Practice your eulogy before the service. This will help you feel more confident when it comes time to deliver it.
-Finally, don’t be afraid to show your emotions. This is a sad occasion, and it’s okay to cry.
Tell Happy Stories:
A eulogy is not just a list of good things about the person who died. It is also a chance to remember and share stories of their life with friends and family members. If you can’t remember the details of a story, or if you are not sure you have it right, you can always ask family members and close friends to help you out. Ask them to send you some of their memories and stories of your loved one, and use them to add to what you already have. Just be sure to avoid telling negative stories unless they have a positive outcome or message.
Have someone look over it for you:
Even if you feel like you are a good writer or speaker, it is still a good idea to have someone look at your work before the service. This person can make sure that the text is cohesive and follows a logical path. They can also add stories to your eulogy or tell you which stories to keep vs. omit. It is also helpful to get positive feedback from friends and relatives, which may bring you comfort while you are delivering your eulogy.
Write for the Audience
When writing a eulogy, it is important to be careful not to say anything that might offend someone. But you can tell some jokes if they are appropriate. It is tricky to find the right balance of what to say and what not to say. If you are not sure, it is better not to include it. This is why it is good to have someone look at your comments before you present them.
Practice Reading Out Loud
When you are reading something out loud, it is different than just reading it quietly to yourself. Make sure you know how to say all the hard words, or change them so they are easier to say. That way, you will sound better when you read it aloud.
You know what the eulogy says, and you know how you feel about your deceased loved one. However, your audience may not know the person the way you do. They want to hear what you have to say. Try to speak slowly and enunciate so that they can understand what you’re saying, and reflect on the memories you share.
Make Eye Contact
This is often easier said than done. When speaking, try to look up at the audience occasionally, if you can. If you can’t bear to look directly at any one person, you can always pick a spot in the audience to look at. No one will know if you are actually looking at someone or not, but having your head up rather than looking down at a piece of paper will help people listening to you.
HOW LONG SHOULD A EULOGY BE?
There is no one answer to this question since there is no set length for a eulogy. It depends on the situation and the person giving the eulogy. If you are asked to give a eulogy, it is best to speak with the family of the deceased beforehand to get an idea of what they are looking for. In general, a eulogy should be long enough to say everything you want to say without being too long winded. Keep in mind that people will likely be emotional during the eulogy, so try to keep it as concise as possible while still conveying all of your thoughts and feelings.
700 to 3000 words could be a good framework. The eulogy should last 3-10 minutes, usually not shorter or longer than that.
MISTAKES WHEN WRITING A EULOGY
When it comes to writing a eulogy, there are certainly a few things you’ll want to avoid. Here are four of the most common mistakes people make:
1. Not knowing your audience
It’s important to remember who you’re writing for. A eulogy is not an opportunity to air your grievances or get revenge. Write something that will resonate with the people who are gathered to mourn the loss of their loved one.
2. Being too negative
A eulogy should be a celebration of life, not a chance to dwell on the negative aspects of the deceased person’s character. Of course, you can mention some of their flaws – we all have them – but try to focus on the good.
3. Forgetting to proofread
A eulogy is not the time for typos or grammatical errors. Make sure you proofread your work before you deliver it. Have someone else read it over as well, just to be safe.
4. Going off topic
Stick to the point. A eulogy is not a platform for you to share your own life story or vent about your own problems. Keep your comments focused on the deceased person and their impact on those around them.
- Over-rely on notes when delivering the eulogy
HOW TO AVOID GETTING OVER EMOTIONAL DURING THE EULOGY
When delivering a eulogy, it is important to try to remain as composed as possible. This can be difficult, especially if you were close to the person who has passed away. Here are a few tips to help you avoid becoming overly emotional while delivering a eulogy:
1. Practice beforehand. This will help you feel more prepared and confident when it comes time to deliver the eulogy.
2. Take breaks if needed. If you start to feel overwhelmed, take a few deep breaths or take a brief break.
3. Focus on positive memories. Try to focus on happy memories of the person who has passed away. This can help you maintain your composure while speaking.
4. Speak slowly and clearly. Taking your time while speaking can help you stay calm and collected.
5. Remember that you are not alone. There are likely other people who feel just as sad and emotional as you do. Allow yourself to grieve and lean on others for support.
WHAT NOT TO INCLUDE IN A EULOGY
A eulogy is a speech that is meant to honor someone who has died. You don’t want to include anything embarrassing or private information that the person wouldn’t want revealed. You should also avoid saying anything that might surprise or offend funeral attendees.
- Focusing on cause of death
- Old hurts
- Past arguments/disagreements
- Family rifts
- Bad memories
- Unhealthy rivalries
- Poor treatment of others
- Poor decisions
- Emotional baggage
- Inappropriate stories
- Inappropriate humor
- Justifying/minimizing the loss
- Anything offensive
- Anything your conscience is telling you not to say
THINGS NOT TO SAY IN A EULOGY
When giving a eulogy, there are certain things you should avoid saying. Here are a few examples:
1. “He was a great man and will be sorely missed.”
2. “I can’t believe he’s gone.”
3. “We were all lucky to have known him.”
4. “She was an amazing woman and mother.”
5. “He was such a kind and gentle soul.”
6. “The world is a poorer place without him in it.”
7. “She was always so full of life.”
8. “He was the life of the party.”
9. “She was taken from us too soon.”
10. “We will never forget him.”
WRITING A EULOGY ABOUT A PERSON YOU DIDN’T LIKE OR DIDN’T KNWO WELL
It is usually expected that when talking about a deceased person, you should be positive. The family and close friends will want to hear good things about the person. Plus, most people in attendance will have had different experiences with the deceased, so it is better not to be honest.
BAD PUBLIC SPEAKING HABITS DURING A EULOGY.
We’ve all been in the audience during a public speech that went wrong. What do you remember about those speeches? Was it the kind, memorable or inspiring words? Or was it the actions of the speaker? Most likely, you remember the negative experience and have forgotten the words.
The purpose of this article is to help you avoid these typical eulogy mistakes. So, with that in mind, here are the things to avoid in a eulogy that will probably leave you feeling embarrassed.
- Cry uncontrollably
- Shake uncontrollably
- Rush through the eulogy
- Speak in monotone
- Forget to breathe
- Forget to pause periodically
- Express no emotion
- Lose your place
- Fumble with pages or unnumbered note cards
- Blow your nose
- Bend down repeatedly to drink from a bottle of water
- Use lots of ums and ahs
- Speak for too long
- Speak too briefly
- Display an embarrassing habit
- Anything else you may be worried about doing