Wedding jitters got the best of you – well, according to specialists, being stressed out is normal.
“These roller coaster feelings are completely normal,” says Lesli Doares, a licensed marriage therapist and author of Blueprint for a Lasting Marriage. “Weddings, no matter the size, are important both practically and for their deeper meaning. Getting married is a milestone and therefore generates a lot of mixed emotions. Major change can be scary, even when it’s something you want.”
A shy person could be over the moon about getting hitched, according to Doares, but recoils in terror when they think about being the center of attention at the ceremony.
Nicole Harris, contributing writer for Martha Stewart Weddings, says there are about seven emotional stages in planning a wedding – joy, shock, stress, annoyance, worried panic, acceptance and nervous anticipation.
To reign in these straying feelings, experts suggest replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.
“Our realities are shaped by our thoughts,” says meditation author Joy Rains. Replace worried thoughts about matching linen and catering disasters with thoughts of joy such as “I can’t wait to party with all my friends and family…”
“Some anxiety helps us get out of harm’s way,” writes Jerilyn Ross in Triumph Over Fear: A Book of Help and Hope for People with Anxiety, Panic Attacks and Phobias. “It helps us focus on doing something, to try harder. It forces us to take action.”
While some may have anxiety so over the top that they need clinical help, most of what constitutes the jitters is normal in wedding planning.
To calm the waters of wedding planning, Ross suggests the following tips: focus on what you like instead of dislike, change your should to could, listen to learn and keep the lines of communication open.
Jonathan Alpert of the Huff post recommends that a couple getting married can cut anxiety by lowering standards set too high, stick with your decisions despite well-meaning onlookers, set goals and remember the wedding isn’t as important as the marriage itself.
For stress-free wedding photography, call David Morris — he’s an expert on keeping things calm and creative.