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3 Ways to Reduce Stress Before Your Wedding

 

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There are not very many things in life that can induce stress on a couple (especially the bride) the way a rapidly approaching wedding can. While we like to believe we live in a more inclusive world of mixed baby showers and co-bachelor/bachelorette parties, let’s be honest ladies; most of the planning (as well as the work) falls to us.

And while deep down that may actually be the way we prefer it (just so we know nothing gets screwed up), it still doesn’t mean that it is fair that one half of the party carries nearly all of the stress. So here are three quick and simple ideas to help you decrease your stress and anxiety levels as much as possible, allowing you to better enjoy what should be the most incredible day of your life:

 

Learn to Delegate

This is probably the most essential thing that you can do in the early stages of planning, as well as when the day is almost here. It’s almost a universal agreement among wedding experts and professionals that you hire a planner very early on in the process, as this will handle the bulk of the delegationfrom there.

 

After that, don’t be shy about asking your friends, family, or bridal party to take care of little errandsfor you. After all, not only should they do it because they love and care about you, but also because it kind of goes along with the territory of being in the bride’s inner circle in the first place. And truthfully, it’s not like you wouldn’t or haven’t done the same thing for them (and for some of them, maybe more than once).

 

Get a Full Night’s Rest

While bringing in a professional to handle the planningand execution of your wedding might be the most important thing you do early on in the process, without a doubt getting the proper amount of sleep the night before the wedding is the most important last thing you need to do in the process.

 

We know that outside of Christmas Eve when you were a little kid that this is most likely the most excited and nervous you have ever been waiting for the next day to come. But there have been countless studies performed on the effects of lack of sleepand their correlation to increased stress and anxiety levels. Making sure that you go to bed early and go through a full, natural sleep cycle can make a significant difference in your mood and attitude the next day.

 

Get All of the Extracurricular Planning Out of the Way

Once the “I Do’s” are said, the dinner, dancing, and champagne finished, and the getaway vehicle thoroughly defaced, the next step is the first trip you will take together as a married couple. Having the details out of the way beforehand will take away anylingering anxietythat you may have about little tasks or chores that still need to be completed. Things like passports (if you are honeymooning out of the country), packing, travel and hotel reservations, or anything else concerning the next few days can usually be taken care of prior to the wedding.

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Planning what is considered one of the happiest days of your life can prove to be surprisingly stressful. On top of that, you want to look your best, so you want to ensure you are practicing self-care as often as possible leading up to your big day. How do you find the balance between wedding-planning and taking care of yourself? Here are a few tips.

Start and End Your Day with Self-Care

Typically your mornings and evenings, when you first wake up and go to sleep, are when you have the most time for yourself. After that, the craziness that is juggling wedding planning, work, and social life occurs. Try a dedicate time in the morning and evening to self-care, even if it is just 15 minutes. This can be a quick workout or a relaxing meditation or yoga sequence to clear your mind.

You Are What You Eat

One thing that should never affect your schedule is your diet. Did you realize that what you ingest can have a direct effect on your energy levels, your hormones, and even your mood? Give your body and mind a break by making sure you are only eating foods that will promote positivityand keep your calm. When in doubt, if it’s processed then you probably want to stay away from it.

Put it in Your Planner

While planning a wedding, your calendar will prove to be your best friend and a crux in staying organized and on top of events. If you plan your day by the hour, be sure to add time for self-care and stick to your schedule! This will allow you to not go over on meetings and you will make sure you have time to take care of you within your daily schedule. Be sure to take advantage of delegation as well when mapping out your daily and weekly tasks. If your noisy air conditioning unit keeps you up at night, give yourself permission to call a repairmanto fix it—you’ll thank yourself later.

Be Realistic in Your Timeline

There’s no way you’re going to be able to buy your dress, have your bridal shower, and your bachelorette party all in one weekend if you want to keep your sanity. Do some research on sample wedding planning timelinesand be sure to give yourself enough time in between each task that needs to be accomplished so that you can have breaks in between tasks and be able to enjoy your engagement with your partner.

Know When to Say No

Just because you are getting married and everyone wants to have dedicated one-on-one time with you doesn’t mean that you have to stretch yourself so thin that you have no time for yourself. If you can’t make dinner, or you just don’t want to go, that’s okay! Know when you need to say noto certain events or requests. Try and reschedule events with small groups of people so that they are intimate enough to have conversations but large enough that you are taking care of a couple of meetups at once.

 

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You’re enjoying an evening with your significant other, your person, your one and only, and suddenly it happens. They get down on one knee and pop the question. It’s such a special moment – the moment where your significant other turns into the person you’re going to spend the rest of your life with. There are phone calls to make, social media posts to write, and, of course, an entire wedding to plan!

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It’s ok, though, because you’ve had a secret wedding Pinterest board since date 3. This will be easy.

Until it’s not. There are a lot of decisions – hard decisions – to be made when planning a wedding. Where to hold the ceremony? Do you get a band or a DJ? Do you include children? And then there’s the tough love that comes with slashing a guest list. This kind of major life event is a lot for just two shoulders. So here are a few surprising tips to help keep your wedding planning as stress-free as possible.

Hire a Professional Planner

Many of the phone calls and arrangements that need to be made can be placed in the hands of a trusted wedding planner. Seriously, there’s no need to spend your lunch hours on the phone with caterers, florists, and photographers. Make your picks and let someone else handle the rest. If you can’t decide, then they’ll help you prioritizeand pick. Prioritizing is half the battle. Plus, having a pro on-site for the big day can lead to so much peace of mind. It will allow you to focus on what matters – saying “I do” to the one you love. 

Get a Good Night’s Sleep

It can’t be said enough – a good night’s sleep is crucial no matter what’s going on in your life. It’s proven that a lack of sleep can cause weight gain, irritability, and even lowers your immune systemmaking it easier for your body to get sick and stay sick. None of that sounds like an ideal bridal scenario, right? If the wedding excitement is too much for you to drift off to dream land, there are a few things you can try. Add some meditation and stretching to your bed time routine, dab your pillow with some essential oils, or even try some of these insomnia fighting cookieswith some warm milk. 

Hit the Gym

Yes, you’re probably already #SweatingForTheWedding, but try not to let the workout become part of the wedding stress. If you focus on the workouts and not the dress, you’ll see a decrease in your stress levels. It’s proventhat regular exercise increases endorphins – the happy hormone – and can help distract from your daily stresses. Use that hour of activity to focus on the amazing things your body can do rather than envisioning the dress you’re stressed about. 

Ask for Help

You are not a bridezilla if you ask your friends for help. Your bridal party is meant to be your army of support. Let them help. Most of the time, they’re already asking what they can do. Delegate a few errands to them. Lean on them to help plan things like the bachelorette party and wedding shower. A few favors here and there will take some weight off your shoulders and let them be a bigger part of your special day.

This is a beautiful and exciting time in your life, but that excitement can turn to stress very easily. Don’t get caught up in the details so much that you lose sight of the most important thing – you’re marrying the love of your life. Keep it all in perspectivewith these few tips and have a stress-free wedding planning process. 

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Attending a Wedding? Here’s What to Know About Choosing Your Outfit

Wedding season is on its way! That means you need to start thinking about what you’ll wear if any friends or family are getting married this year. Although specific wedding dress codes and expectations will vary on a case-by-case basis, there are some relatively universal rules that will apply in most situations. Keep them in mind to ensure you’re dressed right for the occasion.

Don’t Wear White

It may be the oldest wedding fashion rule in the book, and for good reason.

Brides typically wear white gowns. Anyone else who shows up in white will look like they are trying to upstage one of the people actually getting married. It’s a faux pas you want to avoid.

In fact, drawing too much attention away from the bride in general is frowned upon at weddings. While it’s fine to try out a new dress you love, don’t choose something that cries out to be noticed.

Don’t Wear Black

It’s not impossible to pull off black at a wedding, but unless you’re very confident in your understanding of wedding attire etiquette, it’s best to avoid it. People simply tend to associate black clothing with funerals. That’s not the type of mood you want to create at a wedding.

Don’t Be Too Revealing

Consider who’ll be in attendance when choosing wedding attire. Wearing something too revealing or suggestive may not be the best decision. There will likely be children and older family members at the wedding, after all. It’s fine to show a little skin, but make sure you’re dressed appropriately for the event.

Pack Flats

Heels and weddings are supposed to mix, despite the fact that dancing for hours in heels tends to result in major discomfort. Make sure you also have a pair of lightweight flats or supportive sandals on hand to slip into if your feet start to hurt.

Accessorize

Are you expecting to attend more than a few weddings in the near future? Don’t worry about buying a new dress for each one if you’d prefer to save some money. With the right accessories, you can use a dress multiple times, while still making it look and feel like part of a unique outfit.

Celebrate with Color

Weddings in spring or summer give you the opportunity to get colorful. Embrace this by choosing a dress featuring the most popular colors of the season. On the other hand, a wedding in winter may call for slightly more reserved or muted attire.

Don’t be Casual

A wedding is one of the most important events in someone’s life. If they’ve invited you to theirs, it’s a display of massive respect and love. Make sure they know you appreciate the gesture by wearing appropriately formal clothes. Arriving in casual attire will seem disrespectful.

Of course, it’s also always important to pay attention to any specific dress code rules the couple has mentioned. Their taste will ultimately determine how you’re expected to dress. That said, by following these guidelines, it will be much easier to choose the perfect outfit.

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Tired and Angry?

Sleep Deprivation Could Be Behind Your Latest Argument

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It’s no surprise that weddings come with some stress. However, you may not have anticipated disagreements popping up in the most unlikely of places. Differences of opinion are to be expected but if sleep deprivation is at work, small disagreements can grow into full-blown arguments. These unexpected outbursts often stem from a chronic lack of sleep. Sleep deprivation doesn’t have to be your norm. With healthy sleep habits in place, you can get the rest you need so you can enjoy planning your wedding.

Fueling the Fire with Sleep Deprivation

Stress and sleep deprivation go hand-in-hand. In fact, they feed and fuel one another. As your wedding stress starts to increase, you’re far more likely to lose sleep at night. Sleep deprivation begins anytime you get less than seven hours of sleep. At that point, the brain changes the way it functions.

The brain’s emotional processing center becomes oversensitive and reactive to negative events and thoughts. The portion of the brain that usually applies logic and reason to your emotions becomes less active. It’s dwindling influence magnifies the effects of your emotions. Consequently, you’re more prone to overly emotional reactions that blow disagreements out of proportion.

Bring Balance with Better Sleep

You don’t need to be held hostage by a lack of sleep or emotions run amok. Your sleep patterns are highly reactive to your personal behaviors, which means healthy sleep habits can help.

  1. Pay Attention to Your Sleep Environment

The bedroom needs to be an oasis where you can fully relax in a stress-free environment. To improve the quality of your sleep, you’ll need to eliminate as many outside interruptions and distractions as possible. Light streaming in the windows, the noise of passing cars, or uncomfortable temperatures can contribute to sleeplessness. Depending on your circumstances, you may need blackout curtains, a white noise machine, or a table fan to create better sleep conditions.

2. Push Sleep Up the Priority List

It’s easy to work on wedding plans late into the night, but sleep needs to be at the top of your priority list. You can do that by establishing a regular bedtime and sticking to it. You’ll help yourself even more if you keep your bedtime on the weekends too. Your brain will anticipate your bedtime and automatically release sleep hormones so you feel sleepy at the correct time.

3. Use Your Bedtime Routine to De-Stress

Bedtime routines are invaluable when you’re under a lot of stress. They not only trigger the release of sleep hormones but also provide an opportunity to bring your body to a calm, relaxed state. Include activities that you find relaxing. For some, that may be a warm bath while for others it may be 10 to 15 minutes of meditation.

4. Turn the TV (and Other Screens) Off Early

The bright light from electronic screens, whether a television or e-reader, can suppress sleep hormones. The content on your screen can also be overstimulating and keep your mind working long past your bedtime. Some devices have a night or night shift mode that allows you to change the spectrum of the screen’s light so it doesn’t interfere with sleep hormones. However, your safest bet is still to turn everything off two to three hours before bed.

Conclusion

When you’re preparing for one of the happiest days of your life you don’t want to be caught up in avoidable squabbles. With adequate sleep, you can spend your pre-wedding time growing closer to your partner in preparation for your new life together.

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