Don't feel alone if you're overwhelmed with wedding planning stress and depression. It's a fairly common problem, but here's how you can beat it and make planning fun again.
Recognizing the problem
What most brides refer to as pre-wedding depression is really intense anxiety about overwhelming details and decisions. It can also include serious doubt about decisions, feeling like a bridezilla and actually hatred for the wedding.
You don't have to suffer any longer!
- Hire a professional planner. If you want the feeling of knowing your wedding vision and plans are taken care of while you rest easier, a planner is your best solution.
- Ease up on the DIY: There's realistic, and then there's Pinterest. DIY promises savings and then sucks the time and joy out of what's supposed to be the best time of your life. Focus on what's realistic and impactful.
- Practice letting go. Cinderella had a lot of help, as did Elsa. Stop volunteering for stress and start delegating to vendors, future spouse, friends and family. Start small if you have to.
- Vent into a notebook (not a Facebook). Let it all out. You can even burn it when you're done. Being able to say whatever you want will immediately reduce your stress levels, even if no one else hears it.
- Just be you. Deep down, people really want you to be you, so do them the ultimate favor and let your wedding be yours and theirs be theirs. Don't let them live vicariously through your wedding.
- Give to yourself. Fun gatherings can turn into more wedding question fests that just fuel your anxiety. Instead, enjoy some time alone or with your fiancee and do some of the things that brought you together in the first place.
- Schedule a regular time and place, perhaps monthly or weekly, to discuss planning with friends and family in a controlled setting instead of a constant bombardment of questions, tasks and new information every day.
- Invest in some sort of organization tool, such as a wedding planning book or website, to help keep track of your efforts, if you insist on doing the planning yourself.
- Exercise: It's kind of a cliche, but get up, go out and do something, anything. Exercise has physical and emotional benefits and can reduce stress.
- Put the burden on your vendors. If you feel there's an area they could help in, politely ask them. Please be nice! Professionals love what they do but are not mind readers.
It's normal and OK to have some stress and nerves, but just remember if your wedding stops being fun, it's time to take a break and change something. A wedding celebration should be the most exciting time you've had, not the most depressing. So, do what you need for yourself and bring the fun back into it.
Joel Nisleit is a Wisconsin wedding photographer looking for brides and grooms who want an experience to treasure and show off for the rest of their lives. Contact Joel for immediate help.