Your wedding should be one of the best days of your life. But planning your dream day can have an unexpected side effect: guilt. This feeling can arise without warning, and it could lead you to question your plans for your big day.
But you should never let those feelings get in the way of your vision for your ceremony and your reception — you only get to do it once, after all. So, here are five methods for letting go of your pre-wedding guilt and planning the day you deserve.
1. Have a Frank Conversation About Money
It’s no secret that weddings are expensive — the average cost is $31,213, according to The Knot. Of course, many couples find ways to celebrate for less, and you might, too.
But you shouldn’t feel guilty for spending money of your own or taking money from family members who want to contribute to your big day. To prevent this sentiment from the outset, have a frank conversation with your fiancé and parents about what you want for your wedding and how much you plan to spend. Family members should let you know right away how much they want to contribute, too, so you know what you’re working with — no pressure on anyone to give more or take things away due to a wavering budget.
2. Remember Whose Day It Is
As much as your family members and friends pitch in — and offer up opinions as to how you should do things — it’s ultimately your wedding. You might feel guilt looking back that you didn’t stay true to your vision, and that’ll be worse than the feeling that you’re not taking everyone’s suggestions into consideration.
One of the best ways to avoid wedding day stress is to take care of yourself first, but that should be your point of view throughout your wedding planning process. It’s your wedding, and that fact should always be at the forefront of your mind. So, when someone offers up an opinion of how you should handle your nuptials, don’t feel guilty when you turn them down — it’s all about you today.
3. Accept Help Graciously
You might feel as though it’s your responsibility to helm every last wedding-related project because, as we’ve reiterated, it’s your day. But those around you love you and want to help, so don’t feel bad about delegating some of your to-dos to your bridal party, family members or friends.
Don’t look at this help as a double-edged sword, either: just because you’re accepting a hand doesn’t mean this person now gets to put in their two cents. In most cases, that’s not their intention, and they just want to help and make things easier for you. There’s no shame in taking advantage of that type of offer.
4. Outline What’s Most Important to You
Every bride-to-be will have a different set of must-haves. Your idea of an unforgettable wedding might be one with the perfect photographer, while the next woman will center her day around over-the-top bouquets and flower arrangements. Still, honing in on these elements might make you feel guilty, especially if they cost top dollar. Plus, how can you justify some wedding details while completely ignoring others if they’re customary at most other ceremonies?
Ultimately, you need to remind yourself that every wedding will be different, and you and your fiancé’s shared vision might be different than the norm. The best way to avoid feeling guilt about spending big on certain elements is to agree to cut others that you’re not as crazy about. For example, if you do want that top-of-the-line bridal photographer, you might be able to forego a videographer in order to balance your budget.
These types of checks and balances will help you rectify your spending guilt, and you can justify the lack of wedding video by reminding yourself it wasn’t what you wanted from your wedding — you have the gorgeous photos hanging on your wall instead.
5. Don’t Compare Your Day to Someone Else’s
You’ve probably attended other weddings, and you know your celebration will be a bit more extravagant. This leads you to feel guilty, whether about how much you’re spending or how much you have in comparison to others.
Don’t let yourself fall into this trap, though — you should never compare your wedding to others, unless you’re trying to draw inspiration for your own design. It’s your money your spending, and you earned the right to celebrate your love and happiness. Just because it’s a large-scale ceremony and reception doesn’t mean you’re overdoing it, and you’re not offending your guests, who will only appreciate the evening ahead.
Enjoy Your Day Guilt-Free
Love is worth celebrating, and you should never feel bad about doing it. So, plan without fear and make your wedding day perfect for you — that way, you’ll only look back with happiness on the day that started the rest of your life.