How to conquer bridal anxieties

25 Feb 2019

Be prepared for when wedding anxieties strike and learn how to nip them in the bud

Image: Tiko Giorgadze via Unsplash

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A general feeling of worry, instability and unease, anxiety can take control when you’re least expecting it and the condition can manifest itself in several ways. Anxiety tends to occur during stressful situations and while planning a wedding is a joyous task, it can indeed prove testing and spur anxieties that you might never have experienced before.

Always address your mental health throughout the wedding planning process and don’t overlook any signs or symptoms which may indicate more severe anxiety. Speak to your partner, friends and family throughout your journey and tell them how you’re feeling when the going gets tough. Always remember, you are not alone.

Fatmata Kamara, specialist mental health nurse advisor for BUPA UK, says: "Unsurprisingly, many brides may have worries about how their big day’s going to go, and this can often surface on the day itself.

"If you’re feeling particularly worried or anxious in the lead up to your wedding, then I’d suggest doing things that can help to combat this. Regular exercise, reducing caffeine consumption, maintaining a healthy diet and practising meditation and mindfulness can all help to boost your mood and relieve anxiety. Also, I would advise getting a good night’s sleep which will help you to feel better."

Here are just a few specific bridal anxieties that you may encounter when wedding planning and tips on how to beat them...

Striving for perfection

Brides and grooms can put so much pressure on themselves when making sure every last detail is taken care of. While spreadsheet upon spreadsheet of contacts, seating arrangements and timings can compartmentalise thoughts this can also leave you feeling overwhelmed. Obsessing over little details can easily become a habit.

How to beat it: Every couple wants their wedding to go perfectly, but by having faith in your suppliers and resigning yourself to the fact that some things are simply out of your control then you will feel a lot calmer come the day. Consider the repercussions if something were to go wrong by taking a look at these potential wedding disasters and how to prevent them and remember that everything will work out in the end. There can also be a flipside; for example, having a plan B in place for bad weather is wise yet rain can make for beautiful photo opportunities, so see the positive side.

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Image: Sweet Ice Cream Photography via Unsplash

Body insecurities

Every bride (and even grooms) will dislike something about themselves. However, the thought of being in the spotlight on your wedding day will drive you to ensure you look and feel your best. Yet this can create an unnecessary amount of additional pressure and it can also be hard to maintain the motivation to meet any set goals. 

How to beat it: Be body confident. While this is easier said than done, make a decision from the outset about how you can feel your best. If you want to lose weight or tone up, set a realistic goal and speak to health and fitness professionals for expert advice. When it comes to the dress, choose a style that suits your shape and doesn’t expose your ‘problem areas’. Bride-to-be Catherine Hiley says: “It's so important to wear something on the day that makes you feel confident. Keep trying on dresses until you find the right one. Most importantly of all, keep reminding yourself that your fiancé loves you just as you are. After all, they wouldn't be marrying you if they didn't.”

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Image: Taylor Smith via Unsplash

Keeping people happy

Malminder Gill is a London-based hypnotherapist who has launched a Bridal Anxiety Programme to help brides-to-be cope with the pressures wedding planning can present. Malminder says: “Anxiety around people pleasing can be hugely debilitating for any bride and it's intense because it can go on for a long period of time. Many weddings take up to two years of planning and the anxiety can be easily triggered because the wedding becomes THE topic of conversation for most social occasions with friends and family.

“Everyone has an opinion about your wedding day and the bride can fall into ‘people pleasing’ as the fear of judgement takes over.”

How to beat it: Malminder advises: “Be clear on what you and your partner want for your wedding day first. Discover between yourselves the non-negotiables before discussing and sharing your ideas with friends and families who can have an input on 'negotiable' items.” 

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Image: Eric Ward via Unsplash

Being the centre of attention

Brides will always be divided on being the centre of attention. Some will lavish in the attention, while for others the prospect of all eyes on them fills them with dread. If you are the latter, then you will know the daunting feelings of walking down the aisle, exchanging intimate vows and posing for wedding photographs.

How to beat it: Take a breath and remind yourself of what your wedding day is all about. Your guests will be willing you to have the best time ever, so don’t panic about stumbling over your words, tripping on your dress or crying happy tears. Wedding planner Marie Haverley advises: “It is all in the preparation. Be sure that you know exactly what is happening when, where you will stand and what you will say so that there are no surprises on the day.” Read more of Marie’s expert tips for combating pre-wedding nerves.

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Image: Alvaro CVG via Unsplash

Join our community for brides- and grooms-to-be and share your experience with fellow wedding planning couples: Facebook.com/groups/EnjoyWeddingsMore.

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