Try These Tips to Make Planning Less Stressful
Wedding planning doesn’t have to be as stressful as you might think.
April 1st kicks off “Stress Awareness Month” and how appropriate in a time like this, right?
Brides.com says 71% of couples currently planning their wedding thought the process was more nerve-wracking than any other big life event they will likely encounter. If you’re interested in their article you can find it here. But the truth is, it doesn’t have to be that stressful if you plan accordingly.
I know you’re saying, “Yeah, easy for you to say!” And if you are, the good news is I have a few tips for you to implement into your planning process.
One of the most important things you can do for your sanity, budget, and overall relationship with others is to limit the amount of outside input you receive from others. Everyone is going to want to help, give advice, and have a say, however, it won’t always apply to your wants and needs and saying no is hard. In the beginning, establish who your “go-to” people are going to be - mom, sister/brother, bridal party - and make clear lines with those that you believe are going to want to be the most involved. Once you find your “tribe” don’t be afraid to set boundaries with them, don’t let them change you and your partner’s minds on things that you want, or feel is important. Remember, this is your day- not theirs.
Second, find and stick to a good Wedding Planning Timeline. There is nothing more overwhelming than having three “to-do” lists for one event. Granted, you may find one that has things you like but is missing something, and another has that thing the first one is missing so you want to use both. Don’t! If that is the case, create your own using Microsoft or Google Docs…everything in one place. As a coordinator, one of my biggest goals is to help my couple be as stress-free as possible, whether they booked me for full coordination or Month of Management, I created a “Wedding Planning Timeline” that I send right after booking via Google Docs so they can check stuff off, add notes and ask questions. You can find a non-interactive copy here if you want to download one for yourself.
Third, once you have decided on colors and a theme/feel, stick to it! Stop looking at a million different wedding images on Pinterest! Pinterest, to me, is a blessing and curse, if used incorrectly it can make the planning process so much more stressful. Don’t get me wrong, use Pinterest, utilize its value, and compile great ideas that fit your day. Create a useful board employing the sub-categories feature; Ceremony, Centerpieces/Tablespace, Invitations, Dress & Beauty, Bridal Party, Men’s Wear, Seating Charts, Favors, and so on. If you feel that your board or sub-categories are getting a little overwhelming, delete items that no longer fit your feel, design or budget.
Finally, have that talk with family members to see who is going to contribute to your wedding budget. I know, I know. This conversation will be the hardest one you will have, but please trust me, it will be worth it. There is nothing worse than establishing a budget and having a huge, unknown range of funds. I recently had a bride ask me to help her establish a budget, but when I asked her what the max dollar amount was she came back and said, “well my dad may give me $2,000, my mom no more than $1,000, maybe my grandma…” Right there, you need to stop and ask. You can’t establish and stick to an imaginary budget. Once you have talks and you establish that budget, don’t have a range. Pick an actual number and stick to it. Now, figure out your top five things that are most important or must-haves. Budget for those items first, that way those funds are confirmed, and can’t be used anywhere else. After those five are budgeted and booked, start weeding out items that you’re not as passionate about or feel the need not to have…save that money! For my full-service planning couples or as a package add-on, I’ve created a super useful and easy budget that they can literally just plug and go with % broken down. If that’s something you’re interested in, please let me help!
Please, whatever you do, don’t make this process so stressful that you feel your wedding is a burden that you’re no longer excited about. If you actually utter the words, “I’m so over planning this wedding, I just want to get this over with already!” Please, please, please stop and reassess your process, and if you haven’t done so - hire a planner!
I would love to hear how you’re coming along with your planning, and if you have utilized or plan to utilize some of these tips below in the comments.