Give the eulogy a beginning, middle, and end. Avoid rambling or, conversely, speaking down to people. You may have a sterling vocabulary, but dumb it down for the masses just this once. The average eulogy is about 3-5 minutes long. That should be enough for you to give a meaningful speech about the deceased. Remember that less is more; you don’t want to try the patience of the audience during such a sad occasion.

Decide the best order for what you’re going to say:

  • Chronological? This would suit the life-story approach, beginning with their childhood and working through the highlights of their life.
  • Reverse chronological? Beginning with the present or recent past, then working backwards.
  • Three-point plan? Decide three key things to say and the order for saying them.
  • Theme? Choose one big thing and give examples, anecdotes, stories to explain and illustrate it.