Most women don’t set out to become difficult and obnoxious when presented with a marriage proposal and the task of planning a wedding. Bridezilla clichés aside, sometimes the stress in coordinating the details brings out the worst in even the most laid back of women. We all swear it won’t happen to us, but sure enough, there we find ourselves – arguing fiercely with our fiancé about the font style on our place cards or bursting into tears when the mother of the groom adds five more people to the expanding guest list.
It’s easy to do. Engaged women are inundated with detail-driven messages expounding elusive images of "perfection" and "fairytale." From custom labels to custom lighting, the list of "must have" wedding essentials seems to grow exponentially with every season. Meanwhile, the billion dollar behemoth that is the wedding industry sits back and cashes in on the mania designed to ensure the flawlessness of a woman’s "big day." So while the critics sit back and label us "bridezilla," the reality is that our sometimes fanatical behavior is somewhat perpetuated by those around us. Deep inside every bridezilla is just a woman who fell in love and decided to celebrate a lifelong commitment. The problem lies is getting back to her.
Keep the Monster at Bay
You know the wedding day is really about two people committing their lives to each other, really, you know that. So what can you do to prevent yourself from becoming obsessed with planning your wedding? Here are five steps to help you return to the person you were before the madness ensued.
Get Back to Basics
Chances are, a desire to master the art of wedding invitation wording and to stamp your monogram atop every exposed surface wasn’t what initially compelled you to get engaged and plan a wedding. Try to take your thoughts away from that expanding to-do list, and redirect your focus to the emotions that set this train in motion – the feelings you have about your fiancé – the "why are we doing this?" Designate some quality time together, and make sure to have non-wedding conversations throughout your engagement. When discussing your future – allow the conversation to go beyond the wedding day into your marriage and life together.
Turn the Conversation Around
As engaged women, we hear a barrage of "buffet or sit down?" and "what will your dress look like?" when we announce the big news. Suddenly – all conversations seem to lead back to those surface details. If those around you start to get carried away with the planning details, it’s only natural that you’ll follow suit. Instead, steer conversations about your wedding towards the personal and emotional aspects, such as how you feel about getting married or how you expect your personal relationships may change.
Learn to Delegate
Part of the reason brides are notorious for wedding related antics is because so much of the event’s success rides on their shoulders. Don’t be afraid to delegate to relieve some of that burden. Your fiancé is your greatest untapped resource; assign some wedding planning tasks to him. Give small tasks to immediate family members or bridal attendants (key word is small – don’t turn former friends into resentful full time wedding planners). And if that’s still not enough – consider enlisting the help of a professional.
Breathing exercises are an ideal way to relieve stress any time you feel the overwhelming wedding detail train of thought take over. Unfortunately, most people never actually learn how to breathe correctly. We’ve been told to "just breathe" so many times that the statement has lost any real impact. Now more than ever you need to practice the art of breathing.
- Sit or stand in a relaxed position.
- Slowly inhale through your nose, counting to five in your head.
- Let the air out from your mouth, counting to eight in your head as it leaves your lungs. Repeat several times.
Accept the Myth of "Perfection"
Despite with the industry may claim, there is no such thing as a perfect wedding. With so many details coming together, there are almost always hitches behind the scenes. What many brides don’t realize is that these hitches almost always go unnoticed by wedding guests. Learn to accept that many factors are simply beyond your control, and try to remind yourself that in the end – these uncontrollable details aren’t what matter and won’t be what’s remembered from your wedding day. If you and your new husband are enjoying the day, your happiness will shine through everything else.
By Cori Russel