I once read a statistic that said over 90% of couples are stressed planning their wedding.
That means that if you're planning a wedding, chances are you're in the stressed out club, too.
So, today we're going to talk about how to reduce that inevitable horror. Your wedding does not have to be stressful! You can plan a gorgeous day while keeping your relationships undamaged, your wallet in one piece, and your sanity intact. Here are 11 tips to do that.
1. Determine your budget early.
It's a lot harder to say "no" to walking down the aisle with a floral-laced llama after you've set a budget. Looking at your finances before you start officially planning gives you realistic expectations of what your big day will look like. Once you've set a budget, write it down. It's easy to fudge the numbers a bit if you haven't written it down. And if you really need to make sure you stay in budget, create an expense spreadsheet to keep it all straight.
2. Stick with your budget.
A budget is only as good as the people who keep it. As difficult as it may be, creating a stress-free wedding means establishing boundaries and sticking within budget. Have the self-discipline to be reasonable with your finances. Sure, it's your big day, but you're also an adult. Exercise restraint and you'll find yourself relieved afterwards that you didn't pile up debt.
3. Decide if you want to DIY.
If your budget is particularly small, you might want to opt for a handmade, DIY wedding. Before you decide to make #allthethings, however, be honest with what you can actually handle. If you've never touched a hot glue gun before or never stepped foot into a Hobby Lobby, you might consider finding cheaper alternatives or moving some money around in the budget.
4. Don't have too many cooks in the kitchen.
Your mom, best friend, and even co-workers probably all have opinions on your big day. Although their input is valuable, I'd recommend tightening your circle. Only let those closest to you speak into big decisions. Unless you're really struggling, don't show your invite options or bridesmaid dresses to anyone else except your inner circle. I got this advice from wedding stationers who had a few more nuggets of wisdom to share here.
5. Cultivate gratitude.
We all know the power of saying "thank you", so make sure you cultivate it while engaged. Bridezillas are bred when entitlement meets unrealistic expectations. The easiest way to break it up is with gratitude. Keep a journal of everything and everyone you're grateful for. Donate to charity. Buy a gift for your parents on your big day.
6. Don't compare.
It'll make you a horrible hot mess. Just don't do it. Keep your eyes on your paper, if you will, and plan your wedding. Ultimately, this isn't about impressing your family and friends or getting featured on a blog. If those things happen, great. But if that's your goal, you're missing the beauty of what you're walking into. Plan your wedding and don't care what anyone else is doing.
7. Do what you want.
Throw out the traditions and make it your day. Set boundaries with imposing family members or friends. If sending out save the dates stresses you out, don't do it. If meticulously seating every guest in a specific spot makes you want to rip out your hair, don't do it. If bridesmaids robes and hair ties make you want to gag, don't do it. Wear those Converse sneakers or those stilettos. Let your hair down or tightly in a bun. You do you.
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8. Take time for self-care.
I know a lot of brides who finally get to their wedding day exhausted, stressed, and sick. Forget that. Your engagement should be fun! Take walks, get your nails done, read your favorite book. Because your stress level has increased with wedding planning, your level of self-care should also increase!
9. Hire a day-of wedding planner or ASK A FRIEND.
I remember scrambling on my wedding day to make bouquets, style my own hair, and apply my own makeup. It was a bit stressful. Looking back, I should have hired a day-of planner to make sure it all went smoothly. If hiring someone is out of your budget or comfort zone, then ask a well-organized friend to lay out an itinerary for you. This way, all you have to worry about is walking down the aisle!
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10. Get off the Internet and hang with your fiancee.
The internet is a vacuum designed to suck you in. If you're finding yourself sacrificing time from your friends or fiancee, then be as self-disciplined with the internet as you are with your budget. Set a timer on your phone if you have to and stop when it buzzes. It's far more important that you and your fiancee walk into marriage on a solid foundation than if the flowers match perfectly!
11. Pray for your fiancee.
Faith plays a powerful role in my life and I believe in its importance and power (if not to change your circumstance, then to change yourself). Ask your fiancee what you can pray for him during the week and then actually do it. You'll find a stronger relationship because of it!