One of the greatest gifts to receive on your wedding day is be able to be fully present, to live in each moment and soak in all the joy and excitement of the day. I feel so blessed to have been able to live that day to the fullest, and when I look back I still feel that peace in the freedom to feel all the emotions of the day. Sound like something you want? Here are a few things I did to help me get there:
1. Trust – your vendors, your planner, your family. These are the people in your life who care about you and are there to help. Trust them to give you recommendations, to delegate tasks to, to be your support. Of course you are free to make your own decisions, but there are lots of people around you who are willing and able to help when you need it.
2. Planning your Timeline– Blah! Planning is so stressful, you may say. It can be, but it does not have to be. And, doing the planning ahead of time will pay off in the end when everything is in place on the big day.
It can help tremendously to talk to professionals who have done this before. We always give our clients a couple of sample schedules and then work together with them on the details of their timeline. The sample schedule shows them exactly how much time most wedding day activities take. For example, having a receiving line? Please plan for at least 30 minutes. Is it important to you to have a lot of different family portraits? Please allow 3 minutes per photo. Whatever is important for you to have on your wedding day, you should have it. And proper planning will allow you to have everything you dreamed without adding unnecessary stress on you to squeeze it all in or cut things out.
By the way – at our wedding we had a receiving line, we had lots of family photos, we did not see each other before the ceremony, and I really wanted to attend the cocktail hour. Not something every couple can do. But we did it. We also had a very large chunk of time between the ceremony and reception which allowed us to have absolutely no problem fulfilling every one of those desires.
3. Letting Go– I am so thankful that on our wedding day I was given the advice to let everything go once I left for the ceremony. Because at that point I would enjoy myself more if I just went with the flow instead of fixing details. And just being aware that I wanted to do that in order to keep my peace went a long way.