Interpersonal Communication, Lifestyle , , , , , , , ,

Health and Happiness: Wedding Stress and How to Deal

It is T minus 4 days until my wedding day.  7 months ago my fiancée Greg popped the question on a truly magical December day amidst holiday cheer against a beautiful DC backdrop.  The past 7 months have been filled with unspeakable joy, support, and love from friends, family and strangers.  They have also been filled with stress.

I told myself I wouldn’t become one of “those brides” who lets every tiny detail stress her out and lets hiccups in planning turn her into an unpleasant person.

But, as I found out, wedding stress in some amount is nearly unavoidable.   The struggle is real.

And, as it turns out, wedding stress can have a pretty significant effect on the body.  Stress can cause the normal pre-wedding issues such as irritability, anxiety and anger.  But stress is also the culprit behind muscle aches, back aches, jaw pain, stomach aches and heart burn, high blood pressure, rapid heart beat and palpitations, shortness of breath, dizziness and chest pains.

For brides who are in planning mode for a a year or more, this wedding stress and its byproducts could become “chronic” stress, and can even contribute to things like heart problems, hypertension, stomach ulcers, and, in some very extreme and rare cases, heart attack or stroke.

So if you or someone you know are in the middle of the lovely but overwhelming wedding planning time, check out a few recommended ways to reduce wedding stress and get a little peace in the chaos:

  • Delegate – Don’t take on too much all by yourself-realize that people want to help you, and letting them will be a huge help.
  • Read a Book -Pick up your favorite (non-wedding related) book or magazine and crash in a corner chair for awhile.  If you’re not a big reader, make some time for another favorite hobby, like playing music or doing a puzzle.
  • Go for a Walk – Have you forgotten what season it is? Whip out your tennis shoes and take a stroll round the neighborhood. That fresh air will do you good.
  • Pray or Meditate – Many stress experts and counselors recommend some kind of meditation/prayer/deep breathing as a way of taking your mind off what is stressing you. Clear your head of all things wedding.
  • Be Thankful – so many thing may feel chaotic, but be thankful for the love and support for people around you, and for your relationship that’s about to take a huge and awesome step forward.

And a few other suggestions for reducing wedding stress (or really any stress) and feeling better from The American Psychological Association:

  • Listen to soothing music
  • Eat well-balanced meals and get enough sleep
  • Talk to family or friends about what is bothering you
  • Think positive – Don’t worry about things you can’t control

Above all, keep your eye on the prize – Try to remember that, at the end of the day, you and your fiancée are going to get married, and that’s the most important part.  Everything else is just icing on the cake.



Photo Credit: Amanda Freeman