Pop the Question: "How Do I Stay Sane While Planning My Wedding?"

In this month's Ask Us Anything, our Team-Z experts break down the realities of wedding planning stress.

By Emily Forrest

Pop the Question: How Do I Stay Sane While Planning My Wedding?
Photo by Caroline Veronez

Got a query about wedding planning you need answered? Pop the question to our Zola advisors on Team-Z!

You have questions, Zola’s Team-Z has answers! We get it. Wedding planning is something you don’t do very often, and from proposals, to registry items for your new home, navigating this new territory can be a mystery. Well, your fabulously knowledgeable wedding team here at Zola — Team-Z — wants to set you up for success by responding to your burning questions.

P.S. If you aren’t a part of Zola’s vibrant community yet, be sure to check it out! Our couples love sharing their very own wedding tips with other planning couples just like you.

Dear Team-Z, I know that planning a perfect wedding is supposed to be fun and exciting, and — don’t get me wrong — it is. But I’m also struggling with feeling stressed out. I don’t want to take any of the joy out of planning my big day, so how can I manage the planning process with everything else that I’ve got to do? From working and being a dog parent to just living life, I find the extra wedding day duties stressful, and TBH, I’m feeling a little guilty about that. Any advice?

~ Messed with Stress

So, How Do You Stay Sane While Planning A Wedding?

Dear Messed with Stress, know that you aren’t alone! After all, life is busy already, and adding wedding planning stress on top of an already full life can leave your head spinning. Team-Z gets it! Although it’s normal for stress levels to rise, it’s also essential to keep your mental health and wellness top of mind. So, dealing with stressors correctly is vital.

As the wedding day approaches and your to-do list gets longer, it’s natural to experience wedding-related stress as you try to shorten your checklists. You should prioritize certain tasks, but don’t let yourself get overstressed, which can complicate the process and negatively impact your well-being. Or you could default to avoiding tasks altogether, forcing yourself to scurry last minute leading up to your special day.

There are many stressors during the wedding planning process, and it may feel like they’re coming at you from all directions. Trying to figure out your wedding budget, playing relationship gymnastics with your guests lists and seating charts, and coordinating your wedding venue and vendors – these are just a few of the reasons you may find yourself reeling as you get further into planning. And if you’re planning a destination wedding on top of it all?? It’s no surprise when couples often ask us about how to manage getting burnt out.

How to Deal With Wedding Stress

The question gets popped, an engagement ring gets slipped on your finger, and all of a sudden, you’re expected to plan one of the biggest events of your life. It’s such a big ask! But Team-Z is here with 12 tips to help you breathe a little easier as you look forward to marrying the love of your life.

1. Hire a Wedding Planner

There’s a great debate over whether or not folks need someone to help them plan their big day. However, Team-Z is a big (massive, huge!) believer in hiring a trusted wedding planner. Not only can they help you stay on track and get organized, but planning weddings is what they do. Yes, they cost a bit extra, but they can help you save time and money (and stress) via their expertise.

2. Delegate Tasks to Others

From your bridesmaids to your in-laws, everyone probably wants to help — so let them. Even if it’s small tasks, such as making sure the wedding party gifts get ordered and checking RSVPs to the rehearsal dinner. Your bridal party is capable, and many family members are willing to help.

3. Communication Is Key

Talk to your wedding planner and partner about expectations and your overall timeline. If you expect anyone else to do something — say a groomsman or your mom — be clear about your expectations. The more you can communicate, the better. Also, talk to your vendors every once in a while about how things are moving along without over-contacting them.

4. Practice Self Care

In addition to taking breaks, pamper yourself in ways that speak to you. Maybe you need to meditate for 30 minutes or reset your intentions during a yoga session. Possibly, the best thing is for you to get a massage or buy a luxe bath bomb and soak your worries away at home. Just make time to do so.

5. Schedule Date Nights

You and your loved one are experiencing one of the most exciting times in your relationship. Schedule regular date nights, even if you have to create boundaries, such as not talking about wedding ideas for an evening. Also, others may feel neglected, so plan a time to go for coffee with your BFF or take your mom to lunch. You’ll be glad you did!

6. Don’t Wait Until the Last Minute

Things will get busier as the big day gets closer, so try to do things as early as possible. Formulate your wedding budget early so that you can stay on track. Also, do things like securing your wedding venue and vendors and buying your wedding dress (you’ll need alterations!) early in the process while the excitement is still high.

7. Create Wedding Planning Checklists

Have a notebook or section in your planner where you keep a to-do list. You may be in a meeting and think of something you need to do, so create a list. When you have time, you can add those details to your larger checklists. The more organized you are, the more clarity of mind you’ll have.

8. Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

Mentally prepare yourself that things can happen. Your invitations may arrive late, your florist may not be able to secure a specific flower, or your college BFF may not be able to attend. When unexpected situations happen, simply take a breath and think through alternate options.

9. Prioritize Your Mental Health

That stress you’re feeling isn’t something you should be handling alone. Communicate with your partner about your mental health, and take a break if necessary. Simply shutting down and going dark for a bit will worry everyone. Just let your loved ones, partner, and wedding planner know that you need a few days to reset. And there’s no reason to feel guilty about doing so.

10. Enjoy the Big Day

It may rain, or your favorite aunt may have a flight delay. These things will happen, but your wedding day is yours. It’s not called a big day for no reason! Being a newlywed after you say “I do” is you need to remember. Soak in the fact that others are there to celebrate you, and that alone can help melt the stress away.

Well, Messed with Stress, Team-Z wishes you no stress before the wedding and the best of luck on your big day. Enjoy!

Up next for you

30 Romantic Affordable Date Night Ideas

30 Romantic and Affordable Date Night Ideas


Dating doesn’t need to be expensive, and our list of date ideas that don't break the bank will reassure you of that.

When Should I Make a Wedding Website

When Should I Make a Wedding Website?


Are you wondering, “When should I make a wedding website?” Around six to eight months before the big day is ideal. The wedding expert Zola will break down exactly why that is.

newlyweds move in together

7 Tips for Moving in Together After Marriage


If you’ve never lived together before marriage, moving in can be an adjustment. Here are expert tips on how to communicate, set boundaries, and enjoy your newlywed home.

Talk About Marriage When Dating

How to Talk About Marriage When Dating

How To

Want to find out where your partner stands on marriage, but not sure how to broach the subject? Read on to find how and when to talk about marriage when dating.

Simplify Your Wedding Planning at Zola

Find even more wedding ideas, inspo, tips, and tricks

We’ve got wedding planning advice on everything from save the dates to wedding cakes.