As a recently married bride, I wanted to share these emotional tips for the newly engaged. Some of them might feel familiar, but all of them surprised me!
1. Substance is greater than style.
In this day and age of social media, wedding-related content can be heavily visual. It's important not to swept up in making your day, or related events, look Instagram-worthy, even though you might have that temptation. Instead, focus on the substance, meaning, and experience behind the events you're planning. This will make your events much more memorable — not just to your guests, but to you!
2. There's no right way to plan a wedding.
Following that vein, you may feel inundated with various ideas from all over the place on the internet, or from friends and family. People in-person also told us who to invite, where to have the wedding, and even where to take our honeymoon. It's easy to second-guess your choices, but keep in mind, no matter what anyone says, there is NO right or wrong decision! As much as you can, stick with what you like!
3. Butt pimples
You might get pimples on your butt. Even if you've NEVER had them there before. Don't ask me how I know this. Ahem.
4. Guilt trips, ahoy
People around you may give you things you never asked for, and then act stressed out, or guilt-trip you for their own decision making. (As a person who's still finding purposes for random, unwanted décor, and miscellaneous items that were laboriously crafted as well as needlessly purchased, without any purpose or prompt, I can verify this.) Fun! Just remember, in 9 out of 10 instances, folks who are guilt-tripping you actually mean well!
5. Pressure impacts people differently
That being said, people behave differently when under social pressure. The wedding planning process might invite different sides of people to surface, some of which, can be butt ugly. Just remember, this behavior does not define them or their relationship to you in any way. It is not because they do not care about you. I promise. This too shall pass!
6. When in doubt, DIY!
It's easy to want to allocate work to friends and family. But if and when they drop the ball, that will add unnecessary pressure onto your relationship. Sometimes it's just best to do things yourself, or leave it to a hired expert!
7. Don't let disappointments get you down
When a pre-wedding experience doesn't go how you had wished, it's easy to get upset, since there's a “This is only happening once in my whole life” attachment to everything. The good news is, you can recreate anything you missed out on at a later time. One day or one night, is not as important as everything in between. If things don't always go your way, focus on gratitude, and try to stay cool!
8. Don't sweat the small stuff
Things might fall by the wayside! I was particularly disheartened that none of my table decorations went out the way I wanted them to, so we were left with a much less decorated, rustic setup than we envisioned. However, you may find that the things that fall by the wayside tend to be the things you did not need in the first place. These things are not as important as honoring your partnership! And it's likely that no one will realize it, other than you!
9. Personalize where you can
Many people told us that our wedding was one of their favorites. Whether they were just being extra nice or not, it is true that a lot of weddings can be similar and get a little monotonous. We tried to make ours personal, incorporating stories and activities that we loved, and making some of our own decorations and furniture. A little sentimentality can go a long way, and people can get to know you just by attending the event!
10. Have FUN!
It is too easy to get swept up in the future or past, and totally miss what's going on in the present. The wedding planning process can be a roller coaster ride or mixed emotions, blessings and burdens alike. It can be very hard, especially on the bride, who is often expected to do a majority of the work on her own — whether she likes it or not.
The Wedding Industrial Complex is a large, lacy monster that will throw all sorts of magazines, commercials, and pins your way. This industry will tell you that you need ALL of the shiny silver star-shaped lamps, what to do for an acceptable color palette, and that maybe you should pay for endless other aspects, otherwise, it's not good enough. Good news is, it will go by very quickly, and if you practice gratitude, it can actively lead to abundance.
Remember, It's better to invest in your future, than in one event, no matter how spectacular you want it to be. What matters most, is not the day of, but your life afterward-what you share together, how you treat each other, and how you nourish each other's growth, health, and joy.