TIPS TO LIMIT WEDDING PLANNING OVERWHELM
Hi my loves! Now, my entire business was built on a foundation to limit the stress and streamline the chaos of couples who are planning their weddings and who want to prepare for an even more meaningful marriage. But can I keep it real? That ish is hard.
If you are engaged, stressing about wedding planning, and trying to mentally adjust to what will be your new normal, then I can bet that you won’t be in the right head space to properly prepare for your marriage. And if you can’t even do that, then really, what’s the point of all of this, anyway?
Now, let’s be honest, wedding planning involves so many to do’s and decision making that sometimes it almost seems impossible. From choosing your bridal party to writing your vows, and all the big and little things in between, it can be downright stressful.
Well my beauties, the upside to all of this is that, it doesn’t have to be. If you enter this part of your journey with an open mind and realistic expectations, you will find that planning your wedding doesn’t have to be a chaotic mess. It can actually be very enjoyable. You just have to be prepared to put in some hard work, be a little strategic in your efforts, and be confident that the end result will be oh so worth the time you put into it!
Now, before we get into the nitty gritty, I want to be very honest and say that for most people, this process will still have some level of stress. But that’s the nature of this beast. Some people are better equipped to handle stress than others, so I don’t want you to be discouraged if you still feel a little overwhelmed.
The point of this post is to give you some tips to LIMIT your stress. These may not eliminate them all together, but they will decrease them dramatically. If you have a plan in place and follow these tips, your journey will be so much more enjoyable. Now, let’s get to it!
1| create your budget and eliminate debt as an option
Now, I have talked about the importance of budgeting so much and this is the ABSOLUTE first thing to do if you want to keep your stress levels at bay. Knowing exactly how much money you have to spend and having a plan on what to spend it on is so crucial.
If you want to know exactly how to create your budget, I urge you to go back and read my previous post “Creating Your Wedding Budget.” There you will also find a checklist to get your wedding budget underway.
And if you keep reading, I will give you another awesome resource to go along with your budget checklist.
Now, since we’re talking about budgeting, I have to mention debt. If decreasing your stress is really important to you, then I strongly suggest that you completely remove going into debt as an option. Don’t consider putting expenses on a credit card or taking out a bank loan. Use dollar dollar bills, y’all, that you, your fiancé, and your families actually have. And by doing this, you will be forced to really hone in on your budget and be very intentional in your spending.
I have a great blog on How to Have a Debt Free Wedding. Check it out to give you some awesome tips so your wedding expenses don’t follow you into your marriage.
2| start early and don’t procrastinate
After you get engaged, some of you may be ready to hit the ground running, while most of you may want to bask in your new engagement and hold off on your wedding planning responsibilities. While I do advise that you enjoy just being engaged, you also must be realistic in that the goal is not to just be engaged.
Your engagement leads to a wedding and then ultimately to your marriage. So, the sooner you begin to execute your ideas and planning tasks, the less likely you will feel pinched for time which leads to the overwhelm.
3| get organized
After you have your money in order and know where your dollars will go, it’s time to gear up those organizational skills. Before you can really begin any daunting task, you have to first, get your ducks in a row.
This is the time to start researching your venue and vendor options. Use your budget as a guide to direct you so you know what type of vendors you should be researching. And educate yourself so you will have an idea on how much vendors and services cost and what you can expect from them.
Now, as far as organizational tools, that will depend on you. Some of you may be hardcopy and paper gals. And some of you may be all about the digital and online options. If you are a paper girl, get yourself a binder. Add tabs for each vendor category and put all your ideas, contracts and receipts there so you can find them easily. Also make sure your budget is there front and center to refer to whenever necessary.
If you prefer to keep things digital, there are a few ways you can go. There are several wedding planning apps available, some free, some paid, that will allow you to put all of your ideas into the app. You can also upload your contracts into them to keep everything in one place.
Now if you are anything like me, a paper and digital kind of girl, you can use a little bit from both. You can have your binder with all of your paperwork and also have folders in your email or on your phone to keep digital copies of your contracts as they are emailed to you.
Sometimes, having paper copies come in handy, in case you ever have wifi issues during a meeting and can’t pull up your digital files.
Whichever route you take, is totally up to you. No way is the correct way. The point is just to get organized and have all of your ideas, communications, and contracts in a place that are easily accessible.
4| adjust your expectations
So, you have your budget, you’ve started thinking about your ideas and done some research, and you’ve got your organizational tools locked and loaded. And now you’re ready to start shopping for vendors and the details for your big day. Well let me halt you for a second.
Before you jump into this, let me warn you as you do your research and look at all the pretty pictures on Instagram and Pinterest, keep your expectations in check. Be very aware of how much services actually cost and remember that you may not be able to have all the gorgeousness you see other people have.
Try to keep that comparison monster in the closet. Your wedding should be an expression of the love between you and your fiancé. Your love will not look like anyone else’s, so why should your wedding? So, spend a little time really thinking about what will make your day special and let that direct your decisions, not all the things that everyone else is doing.
And another thing, again, your budget should be your guide. Only shop for things that fall within your budget. Don’t set yourself up for failure by shopping and falling in love with STUFF that’s outside of your price range.
5| limit your options
Now in this day of social media, I know this may be hard. The services available to you will be vast and will be thrown at you from every direction. This can lead to overwhelm very quickly.
So, my suggestion is to limit how many options you have to choose from. How to do this you might ask? First thing to do is hit UNFOLLOW. Stop following all the florists, and all the wedding designers, and all the photographers on social media. They are giving you too many ideas and making your decisions that much harder.
Something else you can do is get referrals. If you have been to a wedding recently and really liked a certain aspect, ask that friend or family member for a referral. If you really loved the food, ask them “who was your caterer?” This will be one less decision you will have to make and ultimately decrease your stress.
6| ask for help and delegate
Yes, you will have a bunch of decisions to make. But you may also have a lot of little tasks that need to be done. Instead of trying to be super woman and do it all on your own, get some help from your crew.
Now, if you did a good job choosing your bridesmaids, then they should be eager to help get some stuff off of your plate. If you need to pick up your invitations from your stationer, delegate that task to a bridesmaid. If you need some help choosing your floral arrangements, call on your maid of honor.
Just because this is your wedding, doesn’t mean you have to do everything yourself. You have the right to ask for help. And with that being said, get your fiancé to chip in on some of the decisions as well. He may not be as enthusiastic about it, but if it will alleviate stress from your life, I’m sure he will be happy to help out.
7| practice patience
Remember that saying, patience is a virtue? Well, while you’re planning your wedding, you will get a whole lot of practice in that. So, go ahead and get used to the idea that you will need to be patient and accept that this process may not move as fast as you might want it to.
Making all of your decisions will take time. Getting your final products will take time. So, if you know going in to adjust expectations and your level of patience, you won’t be so stressed if things get delayed a bit.
One of the main things that lead to frustration while wedding planning is miscommunication. You have one idea in your head, and your photographer has another. Or your florist gives you blush tones in your bouquet, but you wanted pink.
It is better to over communicate than to just assume that you have made your point. It is also your responsibility to voice up when something isn’t clear. If you are unhappy with your makeup trial, say so during the trial so your artist can address it right then and there. If you are unclear about a design idea that your florist has, ask questions.
And at the same time, you really need to be sure that you are crystal clear in your expectations as well. If in your mind, you want pink, and blush is suggested, ask for clarification. Ask to be shown a picture to make sure your ideas are on the same page.
You also want to communicate to your bridal party and families of any expectations you may have of them. If you are expecting them to be at your hotel for a certain time to begin hair and makeup the morning of your wedding, then make sure to communicate to them to come with washed hair and clean makeup free skin.
The point here is to simply communicate. You don’t have to be rude or disrespectful, you just have to be very clear.
9| take some time and step away
I know, this might seem crazy, right? But trust me, it’s not. You may think that every waking moment needs to be dedicated to wedding planning, but that will drive you mad. Take some time off. Squeeze at least one night a week where you don’t do any wedding related tasks.
Keep in mind, that you need to plan for this so you don’t feel overwhelmed when you get back to it. This will take some strategic scheduling on your part, but if you are organized and have your plan in place, then this is so doable.
10| be confident in your decisions
Once you have made a decision, stick to it and move on. Don’t get caught up in second guessing every decision you make. That will surely lead to stress filled days.
Now, I don’t mean not changing your mind if you flat out don’t like something. But if you are happy with the decision, stick to your guns, or, if necessary, make small tweaks to get it to your liking.
Pressing UNFOLLOW on social media will help with this one too, because the more you scroll, the more ideas you get and the more likely you will want to change your mind on a decision you already made and were happy with.
Know that there comes a point when everything is out of your control. You can’t control the weather on your wedding day, and there’s nothing you can do if your flower girl comes down with the flu.
There is no point in stressing over things you cannot change. Accept that you planned your wedding to the best of your ability and feel confident that you did everything you could to have the wedding you always dreamed of.
I know this was a long post, but the information here will surely help you.
If you follow these tips, I have no doubt that your stress levels will be tremendously reduced. It won’t be easy, but it is definitely doable. And since you will be less stressed, you will have the brain space to really focus on what’s most important: PREPARING FOR A HAPPY, HEALTHY MARRIAGE!
Now, just for you, I’ve created a guide to plan your wedding expenses. You can use this along with the wedding budget checklist to get your wedding budget underway and to ultimately limit the wedding planning overwhelm.
USE THIS GUIDE FOR PLANNING YOUR WEDDING EXPENSES
IT IS AN ESSENTIAL PART TO SUCCESSFUL WEDDING PLANNING