If you are getting married in the next couple of months & are currently stressing because you have so much to do in so little time, you are not alone! Chances are at this point, you already have the big ticket To Do items all planned out. All that you have left to do are a million little things, & to say it’s overwhelming is an understatement.. As soon as the wedding countdown dwindles into the double digits, it is easy to let panic set in. But don’t stress! Grab a coffee, get organized, & GET. IT. DONE!

1. Get out of your head

First things first, you need to get everything remaining on your To Do list down on paper. Literally get all of the stressful info out of your head. The little details  really do add up. It can be hard to remember everything & can also feel very daunting. Having a list in front of you will not only help you visualize what is left to accomplish, but will also help your closest family & friends see what you need help with. You have to help them help you.

PRO TIP: Stay organized by using a digital planner or calendar to help you make a timeline. Put everything in your calendar with auto reminders. Having a plan will ensure that you are ready to go for your big day with the least amount of stress as possible.

2. The 4 D’s

Now that you have determined everything that is still left to accomplish on your list, you need to decide what you need to:

  • Do now
    • What can you check off of the list today? There is no time like the present.
  • Do later
    • …with a deadline! Make sure that you flag the action items that cannot be done today & don’t let them become out of sight, out of mind. There is no more time to waste.
  • Delegate
    • Take some of the workload off of your plate & allow someone you trust to help you. Of course this is easier said than done. Make sure that you talk this person through exactly what you want so that you can focus on what the tasks that only you can do.
  • Delete
    • This is probably the hardest category because you are now slightly changing the vision that you’ve had up to this point. But if it’s getting down to the wire & you are stressed beyond belief, it needs to be done. It is ok to realize that maybe you have been a little too ambitious when searching Pinterest for inspo (trust me, every bride is guilty of that). Prioritize what is most important to you on your list. Now look at the bottom of the list & determine which items can get the axe. When your big day comes, you’ll be thanking yourself.

3. A Life Changing Experience

There is a guarantee that at this point, there has already been quite a few changes. For example, some of your guests may have RSVP’d that they are now bringing an unexpected plus one. If you did not account for any of these late changes, your numbers are most likely off. This means that everything else will need to shift as well. Make sure that you have reserved the right amount of tables & chairs, have enough food, & anything else that may need to be updated to accommodate. Things may continue to change up until the week of, so try your best to go with the flow. Everything will work out in the end.

4. For Better or for Worse

As much as you’d like your wedding day to be perfect & problem-free, it is likely that you may experience some type of hiccup the day of. Planning a wedding can sometimes feel like a game of chess. You need to prepare yourself & pre-plan solutions for any potential issues that may arise ahead of time. Does your Aunt Barb & Uncle Joe always cause a scene at family gatherings? Consider having a seating chart & sit them on opposite sides of the reception. Are you worried about some of your guests having a few drinks too many? Arrange designated drivers or a shuttle service for those who may need it. Is the weather forecasting rain on your outdoor reception? Reserve a tent that can cover all of your guests.

It is important to remember that as much as you may predict potential problems & solutions ahead of time, it is highly possible that something you could never have thought of will happen. Roll with the punches & don’t let it ruin your special day!

5. Day-Of Designated Do-er

If you decided not to book a wedding planner, you will want to designate a trustworthy friend or family member to be in charge during your Big Day. Let them know everything that is most important to you, how you would like the event to flow, & make sure that you are on the same page well ahead of time. Your designated coordinator needs to have your best interest at heart & must be an advocate for you while you are busy taking the wedding photos that you have always dreamed of.

PRO TIP: If you have some room in your budget, book a planner for day of coordination. More often than not, their services for one day are far less expensive then having them throughout the entire planning process. They are well experienced & are going to be able to handle the stress better than your friend or family member that you were thinking of putting in charge. PLUS, now all of your friends & family can enjoy themselves at your wedding.

6. Kick Your Shoes Off

...But don’t get cold feet! Hopefully once you are a week or two out from your wedding day, you can sit back, relax, put your feet up. At this point in the planning process, you should have just about everything on your To Do List completed. (At least, that’s the goal!) Spend time with your family & friends that have come into town. They are here to celebrate YOU. Make the most of your time making memories & spending quality time with your loved ones. The last thing they want to do is watch you be a ball of stress.

If you are a little behind, that is OK! Go back to Step 2 until all of the action items are complete. If you can help it, try not do not anything wedding planning related the day before the wedding (other than your rehearsal &rehearsal dinner of course). Do not stay up until midnight doing last minute touches or putting together your party favors.

7. Eat, Drink & Be Married

As cliché as it may sound, it is true what everyone says… Your wedding day goes by so fast that if you blink, you’ll miss it. You have been planning this day for a long time, spent a bunch of money, & have all of your loved ones with you for this moment. Make sure that you enjoy every single second of it!

PRO TIP: Plan to have about a 5 minute period during the day to decompress. Usually it’s best to do this after all of the planned activities have concluded. Take a step back from the reception & become wallflowers for a second. You will finally have a chance to exhale, live in the moment & watch all of your guests have the time of their lives.