When it comes to the topics of funerals and death, there is a bit of a lack of education around what the heck to do when it comes to these topics.
Therefore, there are many rookie mistakes to be made, whether you’re a grieving family or a new funeral professional.
We thought we’d make light of these mistakes by complimenting them with memes to make you laugh.
However, we do think it’s important to educate ourselves when it comes to death and funerals. And we hope that beyond a few giggles, these 10 mistakes will help you learn a thing or two!
Here are the 10 most common rookie mistakes folks make around death & funerals:
Mistake #1: Not having a clear end-of-life plan
First off, if you are new around here, you should know one thing. The cool kids pre-plan and write down their end-of-life wishes. Imagine… saving all the leg work for the grieving loved ones who you leave behind. And it’s definitely not cool to leave the bill to them either. So do yourself a favor, and use these free end-of-life planning tools to take care of that before it’s too late.
Mistake #2: Not hiring a Death Doula or Soul Midwife to help you tend to your unfinished business
Have you ever heard of a birth doula? Many moms out there say they don’t know where they’d be without a doula, or a postpartum doula. Doulas make the transitions of birth and death a lot more easy, graceful and supportive. Different from hospice’s role of preparing someone on a more biological level for their passing, Death Doulas help you feel ready emotionally for your passing, and also help to prepare the family too. So if you aren’t familiar with them, learn about Death Doulas, also known as Soul Midwives here.
Mistake #3: Defaulting to cliche sympathy statements instead of just being genuine when loss strikes
“I’m sorry for your loss, move on” may not be what stumbles out of your mouth at your first funeral. But something equally as awkward could if you don’t create a more intimate relationship with death and loss. It doesn’t matter if you’re not dying or have never lost anyone, either. Death is an important part of life, and should be recognized that far before our time comes so we can better support each other when it does. We suggest you read up on Death Positivity or maybe try playing a death card game like Morbid Curiosity and see where that takes you.
Mistake #4: Thinking that just because you’re young(er) doesn’t mean your immune to death
You may not be biologically on the brink of your own demise, but it’s surely better to live like you are than to ignore death altogether. Many cultures spend their entire lives preparing for their own death (the Tibetans and Egyptians, for example). Try attending a Death Cafe and explore the topic of Death, and then jump back to Mistake #1 and get to writing your end-of-life wishes down. You never know when your day will come!
Mistake #5: Skipping funeral services because you don’t understand their value
Sure, direct cremation is an affordable way to take care of our lost loved ones. But what about tending to the needs of the living? What about taking time to properly memorialize and remember the loved one? Knowing the value of a funeral service, no matter how simple, or where it takes place, is important. To learn more on this topic, check out these funeral ritual ideas for even the smallest (or non-existent) budgets.
Mistake #6: Hiring a funeral director who doesn’t have your best needs in mind
Everyone can paint an image in their mind of a funeral director who is only there to rip you off. These kinds of funeral directors are rare in real life, but in movies they seem to be the stereotype for the funeral profession. Don’t be like the movies. Make sure you take the time to read the reviews of the funeral home you choose, so you don’t end up with a cheesy, creepy, or car salesman-y funeral director. And if you’re a funeral pro, make sure you’re utilizing your reviews to let people know what kind of funeral home you are… aka not from the Adam’s Family!
Mistake #7: Trying to tell someone who just lost a loved one that they’re in a better place
If you find yourself doing this, run, don’t walk, to this guide: “21 Conversation Starters To Support A Grieving Friend”. This guide explains what NOT to say to a grieving person, as well as some tips and conversation starters for dealing with a grieving friend (or client family).
Mistake #8: Being insensitive your environment
No, taking photos for your Instagram or a quick video for TikTok is probably not appropriate, unless it’s a tragic loss of someone from Gen Z who might even request a TikTok of their funeral. Be curious and attentive to your environment, and don’t make any assumptions.
Mistake #9: Leaving your phone’s ringer on at the service or viewing
We all know this awkward moment all too well. Don’t be that person. Airplane mode is a thing!
Mistake #10: Not utilizing the funeral profession’s best website platform
Ok, ok, we might be bragging *a little* here, but f1Connect is the most comprehensive, all-in-one website platform out there. And, we’re releasing an *all new* version of f1Connect very soon! So if you’re a funeral home, click here to talk to one of our funeral success specialists to learn more about how the NEW f1Connect can work for your funeral home.
What other terrible rookie mistakes have you made, or seen someone else make at a funeral? Tell us in the comments below!