When someone close to you passes away, your life is forever changed. You can’t help but feel their absence when you wake up in the morning and go to bed at night. Although your loved one’s physical presence is not something that can be replaced, you can try to fill the void with a daily ritual that helps you to feel closer to them. Here are just a few ideas of rituals you can do every day to comfort yourself during your time of loss and feel closer to your departed loved one.

1. Light a Candle

Sometimes the simple act of lighting a candle is enough to put us into a reflective state. The candle light is not only symbolic of your loved one’s spiritual presence, but it encourages you to remember your loved one and think about all of the wonderful moments you spent with them. Every night, take a minute or two to light a candle in your home and spend some time thinking about your departed loved one.

2. Daily Prayer

If you are spiritually oriented, make time every day for a prayer. Offer up a prayer for the spirit of your departed loved one and give thanks for the many blessings you still have in your life. Praying right away when you wake up in the morning is a great way to start your day, as it serves as a reminder that each day is precious and pushes you to live your day to the fullest.

3. Say “Good Night” to Your Loved One

Throughout the day you may be so busy with your demanding schedule that you don’t realize how much you miss your loved one. It’s not until things calm down in the evening that you start to feel your departed loved one’s absence and wish they were there for you to talk to. Each night before you go to bed, wish your loved one a “good night” and spend some time telling them about your day.

4. Listen to Their Favorite Song

Sensory cues are very powerful memory aides. If your loved one had a song that they loved or if the two of you shared a special song, keep a copy of the song in your car or on your iPod so that you can play it whenever you need a pick-me-up from your loved one. Play the song on your way to work, while your making dinner or stuck in traffic to help you reflect on the memories of your departed love one.

5. Visit Their Burial Site

Visiting the burial site is a ritual that can help you to feel physically close to your departed loved one. It’s where you laid their body to rest, so you might feel comfort knowing that you are so close to your loved one’s resting place. Visit your loved one’s burial site whenever you can and bring flowers, a candle or handwritten letter with you.

Any one of these rituals is a great way to stay connected with your departed loved one and reflect on the wonderful time you got to spend with them here on Earth. Try out a few rituals until you find one that brings you the most comfort, helps you through those inevitable tough days and lifts you up each and every day. What are some of the rituals that you’ve incorporated into your life following the death of your loved one?

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