Planning a wedding is no small task. In fact, according to Amy Nichols, owner of Amy Nichols Special Events and cofounder of The Poppy Group, many couples spend no less than 200 hours organizing their big days. But in addition to being a huge time commitment, "wedding planning involves budgets, family relations, emotions, etiquette dos and don'ts, not to mention hundreds of decisions," she points out.
Of course, it all must get done and addressed. But, "while it's perfectly normal for wedding planning to become a big part of your engaged life, it becomes a problem when it's all a bride thinks and talks about," warns Jaclyn Fisher, owner of Two Little Birds Planning in Philadelphia. "Often, brides don't even realize that they've become wedding-obsessed."
Worried you might have crossed the line into wedding-crazy? Then look for these six signs, our experts say.
1. You can't stop researching.
According to Nichols, "The internet, plus Instagram and Pinterest, are a blessing and curse for brides, especially when you're trying to find the best deal, the best vendor, or the perfect dress." After all, unending inspiration can lead to unending indecision, leading you to research and research and research some more, without making a single selection or booking a vendor. "If you're agonizing over choices without making any decisions, planning has taken over your life, and you're going to drive yourself and everyone around you crazy," warns Fisher, adding it's time to step away from your computer or smartphone and get to work.
2. The only things you post on social media are updates on your wedding.
You hired a wedding photographer, and everybody knows because you had to post the exciting news on Facebook. Thanks to your social media feeds, they also know your menu items, your RSVP date, and the beef you've got with a bridesmaid. "While your friends and family want to share in your engaged excitement, they don't need the play-by-play of every planning task and emotion you're feeling along the way," says Fisher. "It's OK to post planning updates here and there, but save some surprises for the big day."
3. Your social media feeds look like a wedding magazine.
We're the first to admit it: Connecting on social media with wedding brands and vendors is a smart way to snag serious inspiration and even products. We want you to follow @BRIDES on Instagram, after all. "But when your news feeds begin to look like a wedding magazine — one without interesting updates from friends — you've probably taken planning a little too far," Nichols warns.
See More: How to Deal with Wedding Planning Stress
4. There's nothing on your calendar except wedding-related meetings.
While wedding planning will take up a lot of your time, there should be room on your social schedule for a date night or night out with the girls. "If everything in your calendar is a wedding-related meeting, event, or errand, it's safe to say that you have become wedding-obsessed," Fisher says. "Don't forget who you were before you had a ring on your finger. A bride should take time for her interests, hobbies, and things that she enjoyed doing pre-engagement. Remember that there is more to who you are than a bride-to-be."
5. You're losing sleep over wedding plans.
Your long day is over. You should be exhausted. But instead of catching up on much-needed Z's, you're lying awake in bed, adding up your wedding budget lines and your last-minute to-do list items. "You're having dreams about the things you forgot on the wedding day," Nichols describes. "Even worse, you're having nightmares about the cake falling over or something terrible happening during the wedding. When you can't sleep peacefully you know it's time for a little break from wedding planning."
6. You talk more about the wedding than your marriage.
Of course you have to talk wedding to your partner. But your wedding lasts one day. Your marriage, on the other hand, will last a lifetime. "Don't forget why you're having a wedding in the first place," encourages Fisher. "It's not to impress your friends with a gorgeous gown and Pinterest-worthy details. It's to celebrate your love and the start of your married life together. Make sure your partner doesn't feel forgotten. Tell him how much you love him and how excited you are to be his wife. Schedule a surprise date night. Be the woman he fell in love with."
If you fear you've become wedding-obsessed, there's an easy fix, Nichols says. "Preventing major bridal overwhelm is all about moderation," she says. "Don't forget about your friends, family, and your partner. Take time to go out with the girls without talking about the wedding. Go for a date night with your fiance and just enjoy each other's company without making any wedding decisions. Don't stop your exercise routine or whatever makes you feel fabulous."