Planning a wedding is a nightmare. I mean, YAY, woohoo, huzzahhhh, you're engaged! But that excitement will soon turn to stress once people stop ogling your ring and start asking about the date, the dress, the color scheme, and the honeymoon you haven't even had time to think about yet. Planning a wedding without a wedding planner is not easy, and even if you give yourself a year or more to do it in, it's still basically a second job.
By doing it on your own, you spend less money, but you add a lot more stress, so it's a trade-off. The good news is that you probably have a network of supportive loved ones who are willing to lend a hand throughout the planning process. Having that help is a massive relief, but since you're the one who needs to meet with vendors, approve quotes and contracts, and ultimately sign off on every little detail, you'll still be left feeling overwhelmed no matter how much help you get from your favorite people. Managing your stress levels will not be easy during this time, but it's certainly possible to do. All you need are the right tools in your arsenal. Here's how you can stay sane as your own wedding planner.
1. Break down the tasks one week at a time
You need to start by making a list of everything that needs to get done. Then you'll get depressed, because you have no idea when or how you'll check all those boxes. But in order to bounce back (and quickly), you need to break down those tasks by week, or even by month. This new timeline will only give you one or two things to do each week, which is reasonable for anyone.
2. Enlist your besties for help
Tons of people will offer their help, and even if you think they're just being nice, take them up on it. It can be as small as getting quotes over the phone or vetting photographers, or using their connections to get you a hook up on a good DJ. Whatever little task they can take off your plate, let them. And make sure you thank them for it.
3. Don't look at the total wedding price tag
If you do, you'll probably cry. Weddings cost A LOT of money, no matter how frugal you are. But the key is remembering that you don't need to pay it all at once. Most vendors only require a deposit, and if your wedding is a year or more away, you can stash money away bit by bit until you have what you need the day of.
4. Get second and third vendor quotes
Never go with the first vendor you meet without meeting with at least two others. All of these companies want your business, and some will be flexible on payment plans and might even waive certain fees in order to get you to choose them.
5. Sweat those nerves right out of your system
Exercising regularly will allow you to get out any pent up frustration and anxiety through rigorous movement. And as a bonus, you'll end up looking like a superhero.
6. Remember that this is just one day
So if something goes wrong, it's not the end of the world. It's your wedding and your wedding is important, of course, but it's just one day. Even if the worst happens, all you'll need to do is sleep it off and things will get better. And you'll have the man/woman of your dreams by your side.
7. Plan your wedding for you and your love — nobody else
Family members will get involved and make requests or demands, and if they're offering financial assistance, it can be difficult to say no. But you should not feel pressured to do anything on your wedding day that you're uncomfortable with. This is a celebration of you and the person you've chosen to spend eternity with, and your wedding day should reflect the best of you and that person — nobody else.
8. Skip traditions as you see fit
If you don't want to recite traditional vows, then write your own. If you'd prefer to serve pie instead of cake, then go for it. If you'd rather wear a green dress instead of the classic white, then DO YOU, GIRL. This is your day, and you get to do whatever the hell you want.
Images: Paramount Pictures; Giphy (8)