5 Grief Playlists to Help You Through the Stages of Grief

At Eterneva, we are fortunate to tell the stories of remarkable people and pets who’ve made a lasting impact on those they loved. While our customers celebrate and honor their loved ones with one-of-a-kind memorial diamonds, it’s also important that point out that each person has a unique relationship with grief. Over the last few years, we have encountered many stories that cause us to reflect on the ebb and flow of the multitude of emotions that accompany loss and grief. 

One of the most common ways that people deal with grief and connect with the emotions they’re feeling is through music.

Music can provide solace and support for those grappling with the difficult mix of emotions invoked when you lose a loved one or beloved pet. It allows us to access and sort through some of our most complex feelings. Whether through lyrics that resonate with our experiences or melodies that offer moments of solemn beauty, music can be a comforting presence during the lonely journey of grief.

Music is both universal and highly personal. It connects us with ourselves as well as the community around us. It is a powerful tool for healing and remembrance. In this article, we’ll explore how music can help the grief journey in different ways, providing comfort, joy, connection, or just a playlist while you sort out your feelings.

How Music Can Help the Grieving Process

Music can be a powerful tool for helping deal with grief. Music and art have the ability to convey complex emotions that can be difficult to put into words. When we grieve, it can be challenging to express our feelings verbally. Music provides an outlet for these emotions, allowing us to connect with the music's mood and lyrics, which may mirror our own feelings of sadness, anger, or longing.

Listening to music can be a cathartic way for us to release pent-up emotions. Listening to music can be a safe and non-judgmental space for tears, and it can help us feel understood. Certain songs can give us a sense of comfort and solace. They may evoke memories of the person or pet who has passed away and provide a feeling of connection, as if the loved one is still present in some way. 

Music also has the power to distract the mind from the overwhelming feelings that can build up, even if only temporarily. Listening to music we love can provide a mental break from the turmoil and sadness, soothing our stresses and anxieties. 

Music can also bring us together with our community. Sharing music with others who are also grieving can create a bond and provide a sense of belonging during a difficult time. That’s why we surveyed over a hundred people to understand what songs have helped them through their grief so we can recommend some music that has already helped others feel at peace.

5 Playlists to Help Through Each Stage Of Your Grief Journey

Not every song has to be tied to a core memory with our loved one. Some songs remind us of their love, some songs teach us about ourselves, and some songs give us strength, encouragement, and understanding from another person when we need it most.

Just as each song might have a different purpose, each emotion that accompanies our journey through loss is there to teach us about the depth and quality of the love we hold for our beloved person or pet. They can be wide-ranging and complex, which is what can make grief so challenging to understand and work through. Feelings of love, sadness, guilt, anger, and joy may be all mixed up together as we remember the remarkable life that was so close to us.

For this reason, it’s not realistic to have a one-size-fits-all playlist for those going through grief. Every person will have a unique relationship with it, and that can change from day to day. As your journey continues, there will be days where you want to feel it all, some days where you wish the grief would go away so you can just be normal for a day, and other days where you feel inspired to honor and celebrate your loved one.

With that in mind, our team compiled five different playlists for you to choose from as you traverse your journey through loss and grief. Each song has been hand-picked with you in mind. We hope you can listen to these playlists and feel the love that surrounds you and your remarkable loved one. 

And if a certain song touches or inspires you (whether it’s on one of these playlists or not), we’d love to hear about it. We invite you to schedule a time to talk with someone on our team so that we can learn more about your loved one and the songs that connect you.

Playlist to Quiet Your Mind

The Quiet Your Mind playlist is a collection of songs, tones, and sounds to help ground you, quiet your mind, and center yourself. 

Let’s face it, sometimes the emotions are a lot to handle as we go through grief. Our nervous system gets put to the test, and the physical effects of grief can be overwhelming.

While there will be plenty of time to feel emotions after a loved one passes, we also believe it’s vital to make self-care a priority. So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed and lyrics are simply too much to take on, give this playlist a listen.

The Quiet Your Mind playlist includes the following relaxing songs: 

  • Nuvole Biance - Ludovico Einaudi
  • Midnight Souls Still Remain - M83
  • Suaimhneas - Ceilidh
  • Ascension - Zen Music Garden
  • Grounded - Sacred Earth
  • Unwind - Simon Wester
  • Wanderstar - Amel Scott
  • Silhouette - Biba Dupont
  • Bagels And Coffee - Mister Decaf
  • Avocado Maki - Lipoov, TwoChills, 93Alekk
  • Chakra Balancing - Radio Meditation Music
  • Turquoise - Koresma
  • Intro - Kygo
  • Hail the Underdog - UTAH
  • Soulmerge - Ashana
  • Kindred Spirit - Deuter
  • Truth - Shallou
  • Introspection - Laraaji
  • May It Be - Enya

Playlist to Be in the Moment

The Be in the Moment playlist is a collection of laid back, relaxing music to help you block out the distractions and be more present in the moment.

Do you ever feel like just putting your grief on the shelf for a couple of hours or, heck, minutes? When it all becomes too much, give this playlist a chance to lift your mood and remember the joys in life that are still around us.

The Be in the Moment playlist includes the following uplifting songs: 

  • Alone in Kyoto - Air
  • Northern Lights - Lux
  • Bob Marley - Three Little Birds
  • Poolside - Esperar Pra Ver
  • Jack Johnson - Upside Down
  • Boombox - Showboat
  • Gabriel - Lamb
  • Promised Land - SoulChillaz
  • I Can See Clearly Now - Johnny Nash
  • What I Got - Sublime
  • Show Me - Big Wild, Hundred Waters
  • Maker - Big Wild
  • Memories That Call You - ODESZA, Monsoonsiren
  • Reverie - Above & Beyond
  • This Must Be The Place - Sure Sure
  • Good Vibrations - The Beach Boys
  • Here Comes the Sun - The Beatles
  • Put Down What You Are Carrying - Trevor Hall, Brett Dennen
  • Right On - Nathaniel Rateliff
  • Sunrise - Norah Jones
  • New Shoes - Paolo Nutini
  • Send Me On My Way - Rusted Root
  • Lovely Day - Bill Withers
  • Take it Easy - Eagles
  • Take Me To The Ocean - The Movement
  • ‘S Wonderful - Joao Gilberto
  • Mornin’ - Star Slinger
  • Sunshine - G. Love & Special Sauce
  • Run - Jeff Cormack
  • Paradise Waiting - Vacationer
  • Toes - Zac Brown Band
  • Set Sail - The Movement
  • All I Wanna Do - Sheryl Crow
  • Somewhere Over The Rainbow_What a Wonderful World - Israel Kamakawiwo’ole

Playlist to Spark the Remarkable Memories

The Spark the Remarkable Memories playlist includes a collection of songs from members of the Eterneva community that spark memories of our loved ones and help us feel connected to them.

Our hope is that these songs help people realize that they’re not alone in grief. Your community is around you, ready to offer support, company, or simply someone to celebrate the life of a loved one who has passed through music.

The Spark the Remarkable Memories playlist includes the following memory-inducing songs: 

  • The Better Life - Jon & Roy
  • Another Life - Rufus Du Sol
  • Long Grass - Just Jack, The Easy Access Orchestra
  • In Your Hands - SIngle Version - Nick Mulvey
  • See you Again - Charlie Puth WIz Khalifa
  • Amazing - One Eskimo
  • 6’s to 9’s - Big Wild
  • The One I Love - David Gray
  • (God Must Have Spent) A Little More TIme on You - NSYNC
  • I’ll Wait - Strumbellas
  • We Are Family - Sister Sledge
  • Lightning Crashes - Live
  • Angel - Shaggy, Rayvon
  • Real Love Baby - Father John Misty
  • Happier - Marshmello, Bastille
  • Another Life - Rufus Du Sol
  • Southside of Heaven - Ryan Bingham
  • Memories - Maroon 5
  • Firework - Katy Perry
  • Home - Phillip Phillips

Playlist to Get Up and Going

The Get Up and Going playlist is a collection of songs to help you feel uplifted, find meaning, and get inspired to honor a loved one.

Grief doesn’t have to be limited to the painful emotions we often associate with loss. In David Kesslet’s book Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief, the author emphasizes the often unspoken final stage of grief—finding meaning amongst loss.

“People often say, ‘I don’t know how you’re doing it.’ I tell them that I’m not. I’m not deciding to wake up in the morning. I just do. Then I put one foot in front of the other because there’s nothing else to do. Whether I like it or not, my life is continuing, and I have decided to be part of it.” –David Kessler, Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief

So, if you’re waking up and putting one foot in front of the other in order to honor and celebrate your loved one’s life, this playlist will help accompany you. The upbeat and motivating songs will help your stride.

This Get Up and Going playlist includes the following upbeat and motivating songs: 

  • Titanium - Dave Guetta
  • Keep Lookin’ Up - Kacey Musgraves
  • Rush - Kali Uchis
  • Sunshine – Matisyahu
  • Can’t Hang – Bird River Grove
  • The River – Kat Wright
  • You Get What You Give – New Radicals
  • We Don’t Know - Strumbellas
  • Higher Love - Kygo
  • Funky Sista - BOOTY
  • Better Run - Reuben Keeney
  • Move - Saint Motel
  • Heroes - Alesso
  • Stand Tall - Dirty Heads
  • Nothing to Lose - The Floozies
  • Stayin’ Alive - Bee Gees
  • Gold on the Ceiling - The Black Keys
  • One Week - Barenaked Ladies
  • Float On - Modest Mouse
  • Roll with the Changes - REO Speedwagon
  • Lose Yourself - Eminem
  • On My Way - Tiesto, Bright Sparks
  • Bulletproof - La Roux
  • Can’t Stop - Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • For A Better Day - Avicii
  • My Body - Young the Giant
  • Wake Up - Blubird
  • Aarti - ShiShi
  • Is This Love Remix - Bob Marley & The Wailers
  • Lose The Lazy - Airwolf Paradise
  • Indestructible - Nattali Rize, Kumar
  • Don’t Stop Me Now - Queen

Playlist to Feel Your Feels

The Feel Your Feels playlist is a collection of songs to help carry you through the emotions you are currently feeling.

Sometimes, the emotions flow like a river, and other times, we need a little help from music to really feel what’s under the surface. Music can have the power to open the floodgates to our truest emotions, and this playlist is aimed at helping you get in touch with how you truly feel.

This Be in the Moment playlist includes the following songs to help you feel: 

  • Hold My Girl (Acoustic Version) - George Ezra
  • All I Want - Kodaline
  • I Miss You - Blink 182
  • I’m With You - Vance Joy
  • We Deserve to Dream - Xavier Rudd
  • Fire & Rain - Birdy
  • Stairway to Heaven - Remastered
  • Easy On Me - Adele
  • Chelsea - Dirty Heads
  • Wings - Birdy
  • I won’t back down - Judith & the lion
  • Gone Away - The Offspring
  • The Ocean Breathes Salty - Modest Mouse
  • Always Remember Us This Way - Lady Gaga
  • My Old Man - Zach Brown Band
  • I’ll be missing you - Diddy
  • If Heaven weren’t so far away - Justin Moore
  • Have I told you lately - Rod Stewart
  • Dream Catch Me - Newton Faulkner
  • Somewhere only we know - Keane
  • Closer to You - The Wallflowers
  • This Year’s Love - David Gray
  • Violin - Amos Lee
  • I Hope You Dance - Lee Ann Womack 
  • Better Days Are Coming - Dermot Kennedy
  • Human Flow - Sevdaliza
  • Simple Times - Kacey Musgraves
  • Easier Said - Kacey Musgraves
  • Messages From Her - Sabrina Claudio
  • Not All Who Wander Are Lost - Lana Del Rey
  • Yosemite - Lana Del Rey
  • Solitude - Billie Holiday
  • All Over the World (acoustic) - Above & Beyond
  • Gravity - Embrace
  • See You Again - Wiz Khalifa ft. Charlie Puth
  • Fire & Rain - James Taylor 
  • Fast Car - Tracy Chapman
  • Dog Years - Maggie Rogers
  • Last Hope - Paramore
  • Free Bird - Lynyrd Skynyrd 
  • Safe and Sound - Lils

What if music is too much?

At the end of the day, we hope you find some songs that resonate with you and help you through your journey with grief. However, it’s important to remember that it’s also totally acceptable if music is too much to handle at any given point. 

As each of us goes through our own journeys with grief, there will be points in time when silence is what we need. So, if you’re feeling engulfed in your emotions and unable to take on any more stimulus at the moment, trust that you’re honoring yourself and your remarkable loved one in a beautiful way. The important thing is that you listen to yourself, pay attention to your needs, find someone to talk to, and take it one step at a time. The path to healing can be long and challenging, but you will get there.