"Wedding planning was the most stress-free period of my life," said no bride ever. Putting on a huge event on top of everything else you've got going on is sure to feel overwhelming, even for the most organized person. But the best way to manage stress is to know what's likely to trigger it — and how to work through the problem. We asked three wedding planners to share some of the major common stressors they see and their advice on how not to let it get out of hand.
"The budget determines everything," says Katie Webb, owner of Intertwined Events. "You don't want to start off your marriage in debt so you need to take a realistic look at the numbers, see what can be done and then stick to it. Shop around until you find someone you are comfortable with and that can work within your budget. It's always tougher to stay within your limits, but you will be much happier at the end of the day not to land on the wrong financial foot."
Decision making paralysis
Couples have a ton of options at every stage of wedding planning, which is great for customizing their big day, but can also quickly become overwhelming. If you're find it difficult to narrow down your choices, planner Shannon Dexter of All You Need is Love Events recommends making a timeline of to-dos and then sticking to the decision-making schedule.
Trying too hard to please everyone
"Many couples value hospitality toward their guests over almost anything else — which is gracious and amazing, but has one flaw: you can't please everyone, especially in one whirlwind evening," says wedding planner Calder Clark. "Let go of the small stuff and focus on the big picture: your marriage, your future, and the fun party you'll have to fête it."
__Family members "helping" __
"Family dynamics can sometimes be the one of the biggest stressors during the wedding planning process. "You might find that your parents or in-laws want to 'lend a hand' or somehow get involved with planning," says Dexter. "If that's causing some unneeded stress, try finding a small task for them to do."
"There are couples who live and die by the Farmer's Almanac and they let that drive or deter their enjoyment of the planning process," says Clark. "Worrying about the weather is a moot point. Pick a plan B and then let the chips fall where they may. If you're marrying the love of your life, you'll be thrilled come rain or shine."