When thinking about getting engaged and planning a wedding, never does it come to our minds the amount of emotional challenges that we are faced throughout the journey. A lot of people reading this who haven't gone through it will likely roll their eyes, but those in the midst are likely to find some reassurance in this post. No one really discusses the emotional turmoil that comes with family and friends that we have considered so close throughout our lives and with that, their is a huge self discovering that comes hand in hand with the wedding planning journey( as with most of life's journeys) .That self discovery usually comes with some tears and moments of utter shock, but in the long run is so beneficial.
While planning your wedding it is likely to be faced with disappointments from friends or others surrounding you. Sometimes those disappointments are our own hypersensitivity during this very stressful time and other times its others who fall way below your expectations You come across friends who are not interested, jealous, cannot be happy for you or out right mean while you are trying to go through this very happy, yet insane, time. I would have never expected that certain people who I shared so many years with would let me down and act as they had; self centered, removed, uninterested, defensive, and worst of all, so not understanding and unsupportive. But with those lows and very emotional times, I came to find a close knit few who were my rocks; constantly reliable, interested, caring, selfless, very much supportive and went above and beyond any expectation I could ever imagine. And so with planning my wedding, I also got a much clearer picture of who I wanted to be around and who I needed to stop being there for.
As we grow up, we come to realize that it isn't the amount of friends that count, but the strength of the friendships and relationships that we have, that counts. And while it is never easy to loosen ties with old friends or remain distant from certain relatives, we need to learn that its the people who will be there in years to come and who can share happiness and sadness with you that count. Those are the relationships we should sacrifice and support for.
Here are a few tips you can do to keep things sane during these emotional times. Remember, sometimes the other parties aren't sane and in those cases, chalk it up as a life lesson :)
1-Try to remember that the world doesn't revolve around you or your wedding. While we are all in our own wedding bubbles during the planning process, the people around us are likely to be going through their own life stressors whether it be their family , financial , school, occupation or their own rocky relationships or lack thereof and we need to be mindful of that. Maybe our floral decision making crisis or the snotty lady at the bridal shop seem monumental for us, but outside the wedding world, people may not truly understand or be in a place where they can relate to the importance of that. My advice for this, bond with other women in the wedding planning process who will appreciate the laughter and tears in their own similar experiences. And keep in mind, good friends are always there even when our troubles don't align and so your best friends should still be an outlet in times of stress. Just be sure that the wedding isn't the only thing discussed. Remember to ask your friends & family about what is going on in their lives. It is equally as important.
2-Communication. As one of the most important components to a good marriage, it is also one of the key factors in any strong relationships. Rather then get in a heated discussion when you hear about a friend or family memeber who has complained behind your back to others or becomes defensive, take the time to cool off and put the situation in perspective. Sure this isn't easy, but try to step out of the situation and look at it from a different perspecitve. Use your fiance as a sounding board. They tend to be more level headed when it comes to these emotional times. If the experience is with one of his family members, then I suggest finding another sounding board. Keep in mind that we are usually hypersensitive during this very life changing time in our lives and so we want to be sure that our feelings are not being too heightened by the experience. After you have gotten a handle on your own emotions, contact that other person and try to explain your feelings in a constructive manner. If that person isn't approachable, try sending a card or email. Although less personal, their are certain people who this type of communication is more constructive.
3-Take time for yourself. Whether it be walks, journaling, reading a non wedding magazine/ book, watching a good movie, cooking or getting manicure, any type of outlet you can find enjoyment in can help reduce stress and therefore release endorphins. With that, these emotional challenges will prove to be less significant and you will be able to better conceptualize and brush them off.
4-Surround yourself with real friends. Those that are supportive, carefree, and make you laugh. This makes everything better. No explanation needed. Keep these people and all that they did for you in mind especially during their own big, life changing events.
5-Remember, people can only what they can give. You know people who go above and beyond for their friends and others who tend to forget everything if it is not listed in their blackberry calendar or having to do with themselves. That's ok. Everyone has their own self threshold about what they can do for others and we need to remember that each person may just in fact be giving their all.
So when you find yourself unimaginably being yelled at, complaints about things that are beyond your control or that make you happy, when a friend or relative isn't there for something you need and with every unreturned phone call, try to keep these things in mind and stay sane. The ones that count will be there for years to come in good times, bad times and ORDINARY times. Stay grounded and do everything possible to reduce stress. This is a happy time and you cannot please everyone ...not to mention, stress only leads to grey hairs and pimples aka wedding disasters!