We love a well planned event and contrary to popular belief, the weddings we attend and capture that feel the most relaxed and spontaneous are often the ones that are the best planned.
What we have discovered is one of the biggest mistakes a bride can make in planning her wedding day is to over emphasize the timing of her day and put little or no attention on what she actually wants the experience of the day to be; moment by moment, location by location, interaction by interaction.
What I see again and again is most of the attention placed on an efficiently scheduled timeline. This typically goes one of a few different ways. Assuming everything runs on schedule – “we’re good” and that is where the couple’s attention is – on everything running on schedule.
AND if, for example, the limo is caught in traffic or the maid of honor’s hair takes 10 minutes longer to finish, then typically some level of stress ensues and concern.
Either way the majority of attention is on the practical details of the day and little emphasis is on the experience itself.
You may be thinking “What are you talking about? We need a schedule to keep everything moving – guests, wedding party, us, vendors?” And you DO want to have a well-crafted schedule. However, once you have created it and confirmed that there is ample time for everything, trust that you have hired a team to support you in keeping on schedule and allow your attention to be on the experience you want to have.
Here’s what I recommend – consider all the different aspects of your day from the moment you wake up to the moment you close your eyes a married couple; from the interactions you have with one another to the interactions you have with your second cousin twice removed and imagine the best possible outcome – REALLY the BEST POSSIBLE OUTCOME and plan for that.
What if your schedule included ample time for everyone to get their hair done and a desire that the time when you are getting ready was centering and enlivening? Or if you included not only a moment for mom to put on your veil but also a plan for every interaction with your mom to be joyful and loving? And what if you planned for 30 minutes to take portraits with your wedding party and planned for those 30 minutes to be fun and filled with beauty? These are just a couple of examples, your desires will be unique to you and they are easy to discover.
Next time you have 30 minutes set aside to plan your wedding day, grab a pen and paper and find a peaceful place to sit quietly and envision your wedding day; moment by moment, interaction by interaction. As you imagine the BEST POSSIBLE wedding day experience, take a few notes, record one word or one feeling or a short description of each moment. Allow yourself to imagine it all and actually plan to have the experience you want. Share it with the people you think can contribute and let the JOY begin.