Collective Grief: How We Can Show Compassion And Grieve Well During COVID-19

As the world begins to accept a “new normal” amidst COVID-19, one common theme binds us all together.

Collective grief.

While some may not be able to put their feelings into words, the uncomfortable feeling coupled with a sense of deep loss is felt by all –at least in some capacity.

The good news is, we don’t have to wallow in despair!

During this season, the beauty of true compassion can rise to the service and help remind our friends and family we are all in this together.

So if you’re looking for ways to manage your grief and be a light to others, here are a few ideas to get you started.

Have Empathy

During this time, one of the best things we can do is show true empathy for one another.

If your friend is mourning because her daughter is missing her senior prom – grieve with her.

Even though your grief might “seem bigger” if your husband is a doctor and working overtime, your friend is still grieving.

Everyone is processing their emotions differently.

Some might be stuck in a cycle of fear, obsessively watching the news waiting for the economy to crash.

Others might be in pure denial, insisting the media is blowing everything out of proportion.


People really are doing the best they can – give them the benefit of the doubt.

Watch What You Post

You might feel the urge to post information to help your friends and family know what is really going on – but did you ever think the things you post might be causing others to have more anxiety? Everyone has different thresholds on what they are able to digest or process.

If every single day you are posting the latest grim news about the outbreak, or how the economy is crashing and the dollar is worthless, the spirit of fear will begin to dominate and frighten others.

It’s not that it isn’t wise to pay attention to what is going on, but think twice before posting or sharing with your audience.

Instead, consider posting uplifting news, such as Scripture verses which will fill your network with light and truth, instead of darkness and despair.

Offer Your Services

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Use your talents to help those who might be struggling!

Whether it’s helping older relatives set up Zoom so they can have virtual work meetings, or helping your church community with social media to reach their members.

Chances are, even though you may be stuck at home, you can use your talents to help others.

Many people feel grief as they feel as if they’ve lost their purpose, but in serving others you are bound to feel a sense of calling as you make the loads of others just a little bit lighter.

If you feel comfortable, you can even volunteer to do grocery shopping or pick up medicine for your elderly neighbors so they don’t have to leave the house. 

During this season, give yourself an extra measure of grace – and be sure to dish out that same grace to others!

Everyone is hurting collectively, but in the darkness we can still provide kindness and give light to those who are grieving.

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