Okay, maybe a little- but I think you'll want to stick around for this one! The message I have to share with you today is seriously really important, and will hopefully validate you and lift a big weight from your shoulders. Let's jump right into it: Brides, I cannot emphasize this enough. DO NOT let others' opinions sway what you KNOW you ultimately want! It's important that you don't look back on your special day and have regrets, and you most likely will if you yield to other people's vision(s) over your own.
I know what you're thinking- this is easier said than done, especially when it comes to family members. You don't want to create drama or disappoint Grandma by not wearing her vintage heirloom dress- but girl, if it's not you, it's not you! With a little confidence and intentionality, there's a way to work around this so that those with strong opinions feel acknowledged and respected, while you remain content with your decisions.
Balancing diplomacy is a developed skill, especially during wedding planning season. In fact, when it comes to a wedding, managing others can be the hardest piece of the cake!
Here are some of my top tips to keep doubts and wedding criticism at bay:
1. Know what you want. It's going to be difficult to stand up for your vision if you're not entirely sure what that vision is! I recommend making a vision board from early on- even Pinterest works as long as you create one that is realistic to your budget. Additionally, list your top priorities about your day so that you know what you absolutely won't compromise on. After that, leave a little wiggle room- not everything has to be perfect! Once you're clear on your own vision, you'll be able to better articulate it to other people, and you won't get swept into the variety of opinions surrounding you.
2. Recognize others' opinions, thank them for their
advice, and firmly explain to them that you decided to go a different direction. Smile, be polite, tell them that their idea is beautiful, (and maybe even that you will keep it in mind!), but that you are happy with your decision.
3. If they keep persisting, give them a valid excuse, like being constrained to your budget, or wanting it to be a surprise for all of the guests! It may be helpful to keep big details about your wedding a secret in the first place- don't feel like you need to tell all of your guests what to expect before they even show up! By not letting too many people into the intimate details of the ceremony and reception, you won't be inviting in unwanted criticism, and this will save you a lot of time fretting about others' opinions. In the end, your family and friends will be at your wedding to celebrate you, and they should find enjoyment in that no matter what food, flowers, entertainment, or decorations you choose. Unless they're paying for it, they don't get to have a very strong opinion in it!
4. Shift your mindset. Set boundaries, block out negative opinions, and focus on staying true to your vision. It might help to get together with your bridesmaids for a night, focusing on anything but the wedding! When you take a step back to look at the whole picture, maybe you'll realize that some of these pressures aren't actually such a big deal.
5. Appoint a trustworthy point-of-contact for your wedding day. Make sure the person you delegate is willing to be objective and stick up for what they know your vision is. You shouldn't have to worry about organizing details on the day of your wedding, and this person can act as a final decision maker on your behalf. Whether it's your mom or your best friend, have someone loyal that others can look to for direction and answers if necessary!
Finally, don't get me wrong- a little compromise may be necessary in order to keep from hurting someone you love. Nobody likes a stubborn, know-it-all bride, especially those who know you well and would do anything to love and support you. While beautiful, this can be a draining time- so try to have grace and patience with others, and ask them to give the same to you.
Main point: don't make a big deal out of nothing, but above all, don't be pressured into agreeing to something big about your wedding day that you don't like or aren't comfortable with.
Ultimately, if someone is still upset about some factor in your wedding, take time to recognize that it's not important. You have bigger things to worry about as you prepare for the one of the most special moments of your lifetime, and once it happens, no one will even remember what they were so fired up about. The truth is that EVERYONE is going to have a different opinion, and you can't please them all! Most likely, these strong-willed people only want the best for you, and are simply too excited to realize that they aren't expressing it in the most appropriate way. Take time to appreciate them and develop your people skills to manage them, and just enjoy this process! In the overall context of life, engagement is a relatively short season. It's a shame to waste it by taking it for granted or letting it be tainted by unnecessary worry or anxiety about pleasing and impressing everyone else.
To wrap up, let me ask you a question: Why are you getting married in the first place?
At the end of the day, all that matters is you two beginning your journey to forever together! You are under obligation to no one, and frankly, this day doesn't affect anyone else as much as it does you. It's a blessing to celebrate love with family and friends, so stay true to yourself and try to remain in a positive frame of mind. Don't stress, it's going to be the BEST!
The Barn Aspen Acres