In this article you will find common causes of wedding stress and strategies that will help you combat them. And next week we'll list 65 great ways to temporarily take your mind off wedding planning.

Why is planning stressful?

One of the largest causes of wedding stress is trying to keep up with social and personal expectations. Trying to mesh your ideas of a perfect wedding while also trying to "follow the rules" and trying to keep up with family members' and friends' ideals is certainly a stressful task. The problem is more apparent when your wedding ideal doesn't follow the rules and doesn't fit in with the vision that friends or family members have.

One of the best ways to combat this particular stress, is to realize that no wedding will satisfy every guest, and neither will it follow every rule. While it is a gracious thing to ask guests how they might feel about something you are unsure about, it doesn't mean that you must follow every suggestion. You don't need to follow the bridal magazines or etiquette books to the letter either. These items are intended as guides rather than gospel.

Another cause of stress in wedding planning is the quest for perfection. All couples want their wedding to match their view of a perfect event. Though this seems like a minor cause of stress, many couples take their quest too far. Unfortunately, while in the midst of matching the shoes to the tablecloths to the bouquets, you'll start to feel a bit overwhelmed.

Feeling overwhelmed is normal and so is trying your best to make the wedding day "perfect". However, you need to be willing to let a few things go. Figure out which items are less important to you and allow yourself to either delegate those items or ignore them if they aren't necessary. Another suggestion along the same vein is to remember that, as a couple, there will be two views to consider. Be willing to compromise so that both of you will be able to realize the elements of a "perfect" wedding that are most important to you.

Who's in control?

Control is a big issue and one that can't always be avoided. Whether it's because of monetary concerns or because of "keeping the peace", control of the planning process is often a responsibility of someone other than the couple. This can cause stress in many different ways and manners. This is also an issue that causes problems in other areas, such as: family relations, feeling left-out, communication, and so on.

While this is often unavoidable, there are ways to minimize the impact of a shift of control. Angry confrontation is not the answer and will only cause further problems. A situation such as this one can be handled in three different ways. In the first way, communication is the key. Calmly and rationally explain what you are feeling to the person who has taken control of the planning. Don't accuse and don't "point fingers". The only way this will work is if you can stay calm and be rational. If this doesn't work, there is a second way. You can try to compromise. Some things will be more important to you. You can compromise on other issues in order to retain those items that are most important to you. The third way is to turn over control. Whether you want to do this or not depends on a number of factors, but is often the best choice when nothing else seems to work. This suggestion may work well, but often leads to other problems once the wedding is over and the marriage begins.

Trying to gauge how guests might react is another big stress factor. People are unpredictable and it's often impossible to wade through all the details of their relationships, views and so on. Some guests may be in the middle of a family feud, some guests may disagree with others, and some may even refuse to speak with another guest. All of the peculiarities and personalities of your guests combined, can cause a lot of stress especially when you are trying to figure out who should sit where and with whom. One of the worst manifestations of this type of problem is when one guest refuses to attend because you've invited another.

Honest is the best policy

Be honest with yourself and with your guests. You don't need to play the role of mediator. The problems that your guests have with one another is not your problem, it is their problem. In some cases, problems such as these are easily solved by calmly explaining to these particular guests that you would like them to be civil to one another during your wedding day. In other cases, it gets more complicated. If one guest refuses to attend because of the presence of another, you have two options. You can tell them that you will miss them and wish they didn't feel this way or you can invite them and not invite the other guest. This type of situation is stressful no matter which decision you make, and neither decision may be ideal in your situation, but either way, the problem will be taken care of. Throughout all of it, remember that you are not to blame in any way, for rifts between your guests.

Bored? That's not unusual

Being bored or uninterested in the wedding planning is also a cause of wedding stress. There will be times when you feel as if you really don't want to keep up the work involved in planning your wedding. You may feel "blah", uninterested, bored or even annoyed. This usually occurs when you're in the process of checking a little detail and it seems like the hundredth time you've done so. Sometimes, you are the middle of a planning "lull" where nothing seems to be getting done and nothing seems to need taken care of.

Feeling bored or restless while in the midst of planning is absolutely normal. You may also feel resentful, scared or angry. All of these emotions are normal as well. A wedding is one of the few things that take months or years to plan. Within this time period, you will encounter a number of different emotions and feelings. You may wonder whether all the effort is worth it or may even feel like giving up. After a few months, it may feel like a burden. One of the best ways to combat these feelings is to take a week (or day if you're close to the date) off. Don't mention the word wedding, don't watch "wedding" related movies and so on. Take some time out to nurture yourself and your relationship.

In conclusion.....

This article touches on some of the most common situations and causes of stress that you will face while planning your wedding. There are many more situations that will cause you stress. Below are the main tips scattered throughout this article which will help you to deal with these situations as they arise.

  • Remember that no wedding is perfect.
  • Remember that you can't please everybody.
  • Be willing to compromise.
  • Delegate responsibility where possible.
  • Remain calm and rational when faced with stress.
  • Communicate effectively (without anger).
  • People are unpredictable
  • You are not to blame for problems that your guests have.
  • Be honest with yourself and your guests.
  • You don't need to be a mediator between guests.
  • There are some things that you cannot control.
  • A wedding takes a long time to plan.
  • A variety of emotions are normal during the planning process.
  • Take time out for yourself.
  • Take time out for your relationship.
65 stress busters. Ways to relieve the stress and increase the relaxation.

Original article by Rachel Shreckengast.

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