Continuing on with my Wedding Series, I thought today I’d go a little deeper and talk about that pesky wedding planning anxiety. For me, my anxiety was clearly an underlying issue and it just decided that planning a wedding was its’ time to shine, and I’m sure that it will be the same for a lot of brides to be. So, from my own experience, I’ve put together my list of ten tips that will hopefully help to ease your wedding anxiety.
1: Stay Organised
I’ve mentioned this constantly throughout the whole of my wedding series, but I cannot stress enough how much staying organised helped me feel more in control of things, including my wedding anxiety. Whether it’s just keeping a to-do list of everything, or going all out with spreadsheets and a dedicated wedding folder, find out what works best for you. If you need some pointers, take a look at my Top 3 Organisation Hacks for Brides.
2: Ask for Help When You Need It
Asking for help is nothing to be ashamed of. If things are starting to get a little too much, tell someone. Tell your H2B, tell your bridesmaids, tell your Mum. The people who are part of your wedding party are there to help you and support you. Whether you just need to talk to someone about the anxiety getting too much or you genuinely need help with a task, asking for help will allow you to ease the burden. Even if you’ve been adamant the entire time that you’re doing EVERYTHING by yourself – it’s nothing to be ashamed of!
3: Sort Out Problems Sooner Rather Than Later
I’m sorry to say that most weddings have their fair share of problems in the planning stage. But stay calm – it’s fine! You’re okay. If and when problems do arise, the simple solution? Sort them sooner rather than later. It sounds obvious, but if you’re anything like me, you’ll sit in a state of denial for a while hoping said problem will sort itself out. If there’s something that can be done, do it. If it’s a supplier issue, speak to the person who’s your main contact, if it’s a venue issue, speak to the events manager…you get the idea. Even if it causes you a little more stress to begin with, surely it’s better to have it out of the way now, rather than the week running up to the wedding?
4: Delegate the Smaller Tasks
This ties in with point number two. If you’re feeling a little snowed under with certain tasks, enlist the help of your bridal party. Of course you can’t delegate EVERYTHING, but with smaller tasks such as putting the favours together, making the seating cards, it’s worth handing out the tasks if you can. You could even make an evening of it, where you invite all of your bridesmaids over, which can act as a good ‘getting to know’ session if some of them haven’t properly met before. Unloading the responsibilities of the smaller tasks will mean that your time and energy is freed up for more important things.
5: Take Some Time Out
It’s so easy to get caught up in all of your planning, and in some cases it can really take over your evenings. One way to calm that wedding planning anxiety is to plan some time off with your H2B. Pick at least one evening a week where you don’t talk about anything wedding related. Watch a film, go out for dinner, whatever, just do something where the two of you can spend some quality time together. Even if it seems like you still have a mountain of tasks to do, you can spare one evening a week! Seriously, you can.
6: Check in with Your Mental Health
As a former anxious bride, I wish I had done this a hell of a lot more when I was planning my wedding. If you have a mental health condition, it’s so important to check in with how you’re doing generally, but it’s even more important not to neglect it when you’re planning your wedding. I found that time got away with me so often, that stopping to check in with myself took a back seat, and in hindsight, this is probably one of the reasons I suffered with my anxiety so much. Make sure that at least once a week, you stop to check in with how you’re doing mentally, and allow yourself to have a break.
7: Identify Your Main Worries
This ties in a bit with my last point. When it comes to wedding planning anxiety, it may feel as though it’s pretty generic. But have you thought to stop and take a look at it in a little more depth? Chances are, if you take the time, you can narrow down the specific things you’re worried about. For me – me and my OCD – it was illness. Yes, really. I was worried that I’d be ill for my wedding. Or Liam would be. Or anyone in my wedding party. Or any guests. Literally anyone involved in the wedding in any way shape or form. Now, most of this I couldn’t really control, but there were a few measures I took that helped to ease my anxiety (probably more of a placebo effect, but you know), which I’ll get to later. Anyway, my point is – if you identify a specific thing that’s causing your anxiety, there may be things you can do to calm it.
8: Distract Yourself From Overthinking
One of the number one things I encountered thanks to my wedding anxiety was my old friend, overthinking. Basically, I would get one worry in my head, and it would then spiral into something incredibly stupid, but because anxiety is a massive bully, I’d believe it. I’m not usually the biggest fan of distraction techniques, but if you’re like me and you’re prone to overthinking, a few distractions might not necessarily be a bad thing. If you find your brain going off on a tangent when it comes to wedding related issues, grab a book, watch a little Netflix, listen to your favourite music, whatever. Just do something that will take your mind off of things. My one tip though, if your go to move is watching Friends or any other binge-worthy sitcom, avoid the wedding episodes. Trust me on this.
9: Look After Your Health
As an anxious bride who was obsessed with whether or not I’d get ill for my wedding, this was a biggie for me. However, we all know that increased levels of stress can affect your immune system, so if you’re suffering a fair bit with wedding anxiety, this may be one to pay attention to. While it probably didn’t act as the best thing for my OCD (as I was obviously giving into it), taking measures to look after myself and protect my immunity actually helped ease my worries. I took Vitamin C every day, ate plenty of fruit, drank plenty of water, and at any sign of a cold, I was straight on the Echinacea. While these things won’t necessarily stop you from getting sick, Echinacea has been said to encourage the immune system and reduce cold and flu symptoms, and Vitamin C has been found to reduce the duration of a cold. So if you do feel a few sniffles coming on, it might be worth dosing up. Of course, you can also reduce your risk of catching bugs and things through the simple act of hand washing too – so if you’re in close contact with someone who has the lurgy, make sure you give your hands a good clean.
10: Don’t Be Afraid to See Your GP
This is one thing I wish I had done sooner, but of course, my fear of getting sick got in the way of me going to the doctors. If you’re really struggling with anxiety, or any other mental health issue for that matter, there’s no shame in going to have a chat to your GP. I’m being a massive hypocrite here, because I never actually did go to see my GP until after I got married, however, I wish that I did. I think in the long run, it would have saved me a lot of anxiety and a lot of stress, had I just admitted early on that I was struggling with my mental health.