Tips for reducing wedding stress
1. Expect stress: There is no way around the pressures that are related to a wedding and it is unreasonable to expect nothing but peacefulness and bliss leading up to the wedding day. Expect it and it won't surprise you. It can help you to anticipate and plan for problems.
2. Don't expect perfection: The higher your expectations, the greater the disappointments. High expectations lead to greater stress, both in the preparation process and the wedding day itself. Know that whatever happens, you will be married at the end of the ceremony. Realize that sometimes the flub-ups are the most enjoyable things to reminisce about. Know that spending more money does not insure perfection. Don't "blast" friends and family who make mistakes. If you have children in the wedding party, don't expect anything even coming close to perfection.
3. Be content: Be happy with what you can afford. Be philosophical about how things turn out. Focus on what you do have instead of what you don't.
4. Don't try to please everyone: Everyone has a vision of what a wedding should be. There is no way in the world to reconcile all of these views. Be polite, but don't see it as your job to make everybody happy or to smooth over every conflict.
5. Draw your boundaries: It is okay to compromise on issues that are not of high priority with you and your spouse to be, but on the essentials - stand your ground. Let people know when they are trampling on your rights or taking too much of your time. Be assertive, not aggressive. When setting boundaries with others, try not to act out of anger. Plan out what you want to tell the other. Learn to say "no" and mean it.
6. Get premarital counseling: It is rather foolish to spend so much time on the preparation for a ceremony and reception that will be over in a few hours and ignore the relationship itself. Prepare for the marriage, not just the ceremony.
7. Don't neglect your spouse-to-be: It is very easy to get so wrapped up in the preparations for the wedding that time spent with your future spouse gets neglected. Continue to date and talk about the future (after the wedding ceremony).
8. Stay healthy: Don't neglect yourself. Eat properly. Get aerobic exercise. Make sure that you get enough sleep. It helps to alleviate stress and all of the health problems that can result from too many life pressures. When you're angry and frustrated, go out for a walk or run. Go walking with your spouse to be and have time for conversation.
9. Deal with time pressures: Plan ahead with a calendar of deadlines that allow plenty of margins for error. Spreading out deadlines, instead of clumping them together, can greatly reduce stress. Even if you have managed fairly well in life by leaving things until the last minute, do not try that with your wedding day.
10. Delegate: Find trustworthy people who can take over some of the responsibilities of preparation. Consult with them every so often, but leave it in their hands. Frugal parents should realize that sometimes their time is worth much more than money. Hire some things to be done.
11. Pamper yourself: Listen to music, sit in the park, get a massage, take a bubble bath or whatever way you like to be pampered. These can be mini-vacations that help to take you away from the stress.
12. Laugh: If you haven't learned it yet, learn to laugh at yourself. Don't take the wedding day too seriously, it is an important day, but only one day of your life. Talk with married couples about funny things that happened at their weddings, so that you can laugh more easily at the humorous things that happen at your own.