How to Stop Second Guessing Your Wedding Planning Decisions, For Good

Planning Tips
don't second guess wedding planning decisions

Photo: Studio Mynt

Dozens of choices pop up every day while wedding planning. Who's sitting where? Should we spring for a photo booth? Is my wedding dress really the one? Did we pick the right cake? Is our ceremony date the right choice for my astrological sign? With all these moving parts, it's easy to feel indecisive. But with a miles-long checklist pending, and your big day quickly approaching, no bride has time to rehash choices that are already made. Here's how to banish agonizing over options after the fact.

Consider the opinions that matter
How many times have you been completely feeling your new outfit before your work BFF tells you your drop crotch pants make you look more MC Hammer than Instagram influencer? Outside opinions can wreak the same havoc on the wedding planning choices you make. So what happens when you love your wedding venue, but a pushy acquaintance calls the ceremony site tacky? Take it with a grain of salt, suggests Dr. Neill S. Cohen, a New York-based psychologist. "Everybody's going to give their opinion," Cohen says. "It's human nature. Everybody wants to be helpful and well-meaning."

The best way to keep those unsolicited words of wisdom from making you rethink your choices is to "keep as few people as possible mixed in" to your decision-making process, he says. A few people whose take you have to consider? Your parents and your fiancé's parents, especially if they're contributing to the budget. "If [the parents' view is] not a primary opinion, it's at least an opinion that matters a whole lot," he says. "Parents as they get older, have very few milestones in their lives. For them, it's a way of marking time...The wedding really becomes a milestone and a statement, as to where they've come to and who they are as parents." With that in mind, sit down with your spouse-to-be and decide how much and in what way the 'rents will have input on your big day.

Don't get hung up on details
Cohen says it's crucial to sit down with your significant other and come up with a short (key thing here: brief!) list of non-negotiables — the things that are the most important to you as a couple for your wedding. Everything else: just let it go! "Do not get mired in the details," he says. "People lose the forest for the trees... Pick the situations where it's worth having discussions about, like where you might get married and how large the wedding might be." Besides that, try not to sweat it.

See More: 4 Surprising Ways to Reduce Pre-Wedding Stress

Toss the pros and cons list
Despite popular wisdom, Cohen says pros and cons lists aren't necessarily the best way to weigh options when so many emotions are involved. "It assumes that people have a balance sheet — feelings don't work that way," Cohen says. He recommends talking it out with your spouse-to-be and arriving at a decision together if you're stuck on a larger life conundrum, like where you'll live after the wedding. "A good conversation with one's partner is going to be worthwhile for life's long-reaching decisions," he says.

Trust your gut and quit hesitating
Julie Holmes, a New York-based life coach, says nervousness over a choice can often be attributed to fear of the making the wrong decision, fear of the unknown or fear of being judged. That said, sometimes it's necessary to take the plunge. "We will never truly know what is the right or wrong decision until we make it," Holmes says. "By hesitating, we are only procrastinating what could be an amazing future." Or wedding day!

When it comes down to it, remember to focus on in on what's important. "It's normal to question decisions that we feel are going to impact the rest of our lives, and [a bride] should use her gut instinct to decide what's right for her," Holmes says. "However, a bride needs to remember what her wedding day is about, and what's truly important. It's not about the decorations, the cake, the dress, or anything else, it's about the moment she's going to share with her future significant other and all of her closest friends and family."

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