21 Things to Do Before You Propose

12-13-14 Proposals, Laura and Matt crater lake

Photo: Abby Tohline of Her & Everything

You've found the person you can't wait to spend the rest of your life with and now all that's left is making it official, popping the question and hoping they wrap their arms around you with a giant "yes!" But before you find yourself on one knee, with an engagement ring in your pocket, and a memorized speech detailing your love for them and your plans to spend forever by their side, it's important to take a step back and consider a couple of things.

To make sure the proposal is memorable, meaningful, and done right, here are 21 things to consider before proposing.

1. Have a Chat With Their Folks
This may sound and seem a little old school but it's always a good idea to have a chat with their parents, letting them know that you're excited to spend the rest of your life with this person you've fallen madly in love with.

2. Save Up the Cash
Some will say you need to put away a few months' salary for a ring. There's no right amount to spend, except to spend what you can afford. So start putting away a few dollars here and there from your paycheck over the next few months.

3. Find out Her Ring Size
Without taking a tape measurer and wrapping it around her ring finger, try to investigate what her ring size is. Look at other rings she has to get a ballpark idea of what her size would be. You can always get it adjusted or refitted after proposing.

4. Know Her Style
Whether you glance at their Pinterest boards, examine the jewelry they have, or ask a trusted friend or family member of theirs, get a good idea of what kind of engagement ring she would like.

5. Determine if Size Matters
Do you think they are the kind of person who wants a diamond the size of a chestnut or is happier with something more modest and on the small size?

6. Is There a Family Heirloom?
When chatting with their family, ask if there's any ring band or stone they have been saving for a future engagement that they'd like to pass down to you.

7. Investigate Diamond Stores
Don't just go to the one right down the street. Ask family or friends if they have any recommendations. Purchase the ring from a trusted place that has good reviews and positive recommendations.

8. Prepare a Personal Engagement
Spend some time planning and putting together the engagement before popping the question. Try to make it personal, memorable, and extra special.

9. Gather Everything You Need for the Proposal
Collect all the details, secure the location, prepare the date and time all before you head over on the day of to propose.

10. Beware of the Chaos to Follow
After you propose, expect your phone, email, and even social media to blow up with congratulatory wishes.

See more: We Asked, You Told: Did You Go Ring Shopping Before the Proposal?

11. Plan a Post-Engagement Celebration
Whether that's a small get together with family or friends, have something waiting in the wings for after you pop the question.

12. Talk to Family and Friends
That you trust of course. Ask for advice and see if they have any suggestion on how to make the proposal even more special.

13. Stay Relaxed
You may be overwhelmed with stress and anxiety over this moment. Do something to relax and calm yourself down, like workout or a Netflix binge, before the big day arrives.

14. Charge Your Phone
Expect your battery to go dead right after you propose — you will have drained it calling family, texting friends and posting your exciting news to social media.

15. Invest in a Camera
Or hire someone to snap photos, secretly, when you propose. Either way, make sure to capture the aftermath of the moment. You'll want to look back on it forever.

16. Keep the Ring in a Safe Place
There may be days or weeks between when you get the ring and when you pop the question. Be sure to keep it some place safe and secret.

17. Practice Getting Down on One knee
This may sound silly, but practice makes perfect, and you want this moment to be extra special (and not interrupted by a leg cramp).

18. Know that Timing Matters
Be sure to take this into consideration when planning the proposal. If you're doing it some place that's time sensitive, have a Plan B in case you are running late or something minor goes wrong.

19. Set a Budget
You don't want to blow all of your cash on the ring and the proposal. Set a budget before planning this whole moment.

20. Make Sure You're Ready
Wait until you're not swarmed with nerves, even if that means putting it off for a day or two. Remember, even though you have the ring, there's truly no rush.

21. Keep It Memorable
Remember, this may be one of the biggest moments of your life. While that might feel overwhelming and scary, try to enjoy every moment of the proposal and engagement adventure.

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