By: Danielle Koban
Marriage is a beautiful thing. Committing yourself to another person through good times and bad times for all the days of your life is out of this world amazing. Once the question is popped and the ring is on the finger, it’s almost impossible to get the vision of white and flowers out of your head.
The one thing people don’t tell you is that planning a wedding is full-time job. The amount of time and effort spent thinking about decor and coordinating logistics is exorbitant. As a soon-to-be bride, I find myself uncontrollably thinking about my wedding at all hours of the day. Have I heard back from this vendor? Did I buy this piece of decor? How am I possibly going to figure out this seating chart? As exciting and amazing as it is to devote a entire day to celebrating love, it’s exhausting.
Now try to imagine all of this work on top of your actual full-time job. Are you overwhelmed yet? Don’t worry, you’re not the first to feel this way. On any given day, I find my emotions on a rollercoaster of stress, happiness, exhaustion, love, and straight-up losing my mind crazy. But word on the street is it’s possible to balance both work and wedding planning. Here are a few tips I’m using to attempt to maintain my sanity as the big day approaches.
Make to-do lists.
I’m a huge fan of to-do lists in all areas of my life. I would lose my head if it wasn’t attached, I’m that forgetful. I learned quickly that trying to plan a wedding without an actual plan is difficult. So, write it down! Set ahead time at least once a week to make to-do lists. Start with your work to-dos because those are the tasks that will pay the bills. Once you’ve finished those, make your personal and wedding to-do lists. Taking the time to dump thoughts on paper helps to put things into perspective. Often times I feel like I have a lot on my plate, only to write it down and realize it’s only a few manageable tasks.
Prioritize your tasks.
In my head, every task is important. I have an unruly sense of urgency. It’s both a blessing and curse. I often have to give myself a reality check because while both work and wedding planning to-dos are important, they all don’t have to be done right now. During wedding planning, there’s a lot of hurry up and wait. Hurry up to book your venue, but then wait nine more months until you can make the seating chart. While there is a lot of things to get done, it realistically doesn’t all have to be right not and probably can’t be done right now.
So after you’ve made your many to-do lists, take the time to consider what’s important. What are your top three priorities? What are the things that need to get done this week? What can wait until next week or next month? You’ll be able to devote your full focus and attention to your work when you truly know what is on your plate to plan for your wedding when you get home.
I found myself a year out from my wedding worrying about place cards and dress fittings when I should have been focused on my next work meeting. And realistically, these are things that can’t even be actioned on until a couple months before the big day. It’s unnecessary to worry about things that will only distract us from our day jobs when they are things that we can’t even resolve at the present moment.
Give yourself a break.
Work is stressful. Wedding planning is stressful. Trying to find time to see your friends and family while doing both is stressful. Moral of the story is we’re all crazy busy and stressed about something. But we’re all humans, so give yourself a break. Pick at least one day a week and abstain from wedding planning and work. Don’t even think about everything you have to do. You’re going to feel so much better when you give yourself a chance to recharge. Take the time to refocus your attention to what’s important to you, like your family, your friends, your fiance, and your mental health. Self-care is the name of the game. Don’t forget that when you’re contemplating guest lists and cake flavors.
Ask for help.
There is never anything wrong with asking for help and odds are you’ll have family members and friends asking how they can contribute to your big day. If you find a task on your to-do list that you can delegate, do it. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, even when it’s hard because you want to be involved in every detail of your wedding.
As much as I hate to admit it, I am especially anal retentive when it comes to planning my wedding. I find it difficult to even ask my fiance for help because I want to do everything myself. But even I see the value in taking people up on their offer to research vendors, to shop for decor, and even offer words of wisdom. Remember, you’re not in this alone. Take advantage of your family and friends willingness to help.
Enjoy the process.
As overwhelming as it is to balance wedding planning with work and and your daily life, remember to enjoy the process. You’re planning for the most important day of your life and it only happens once. Don’t wish the months away until the big day. Really take a moment to relish the time you spend planning and making memories with your loved ones. Yes, finding your dress is a huge deal, but sharing those moments with your family and friends is even bigger. Yes, picking your first dance song is important, but reminiscing with your fiance about where is it you both first heard the song and why it means so much to you is even more significant.
We spend our lives caught up in the craziness, but don’t forget to take a minute to slow down. You’re getting married. I’ll say it again. You’re getting married. It’s a very surreal thing to think about and it’s so much bigger than the dress and the cake and the stress. It’s love. Next time you’re stressed, remember that. It’s about you and your fiance and your future filled with happiness. I guarantee then it will all feel a bit more manageable.
Danielle Koban is a Resource Management professional by trade and a freelance writer and blogger by choice. An Upstate New York native, she attended the University at Albany, where she earned her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Accounting. It was during her career transitions where she unearthed her passion for writing and sharing her experiences with others. In addition to SDS, her work has been featured in Elite Daily, Mavenly + Co., Elana Lyn, and Her Agenda. She now resides in Charlotte, North Carolina with her fiance and german shepherd, Moose. When she’s not working or writing, you can find her running the streets of Charlotte (literally) and enjoying a glass of wine in the Carolina sunshine. To learn more about Danielle follow her on Instagram at @daniellekoban and visit her website www.danielledoolen.com.