Stay calm during your wedding planning
So you got engaged, expecting life to be all ‘champagne and shopping’ but what you actually got was a whopping great to-do list and a whole load of sleepless nights? We hear you. Planning a wedding is the most exciting thing, but it also demands an awful lot of time, diplomacy and prioritisation. Throw in some work stress and the 48 WhatsApp messages you haven’t read yet and you’re heading for Meltdown City.
DISCOVER YOUR CALM
But before you chuck your iPhone in a puddle and check into a silent retreat, why not try a bit of mindfulness? As a form of meditation, it can help you take back control of things and find some inner zen. “Mindfulness helps us become more aware of our thoughts and feelings so that instead of being overwhelmed by them, we’re better able to cope with them,” says Cal Strode, Senior Media Officer at the Mental Health Foundation (bemindful.co.uk).
It’s all about being ‘in the moment’ – whether you’re brushing your teeth or saying your vows, learning to enjoy the here and now rather than always worrying about something else can dramatically boost your happiness levels. “Mindfulness might sound simple but it has been proven to have a big impact in reducing levels of stress and anxiety,” continues Cal. “Once learnt, rather than just going through the motions, we can be more present and aware. For example, when you take a shower, focus your mind on the stream of water, the sensation of each drop as it hits you and the sounds of the running water as it splashes.”
But where do we begin? “There are lots of different ways to try mindfulness and meditation but my belief is the best way to start is just to start and find whatever is the easiest and most fun thing for you personally,” says Rohan Gunatillake, author of new book Modern Mindfulness. “So if you’re into apps, try an app or if you’re a YouTube junky, find something there. Mindfulness is a direct experience so it is something we have to try, but if you’re interested in giving it a go then that’s the hard work done!”
SHAPE UP YOUR MIND
Yoga is another good way to start your journey to zen – it will not only teach you how to breathe properly (reducing tension and improving focus), but also make you more aware of your own body, which in turn will help with your posture.
Whether you’re looking for a quick stress reliever or a life-long change, mindfulness is an ancient technique with very modern benefits. “It helps us really connect with and appreciate the good things in our lives – and wedding planning is definitely full of those!” says Rohan, who used mindful techniques when planning his own wedding. “On the day itself, there is so much happening and so many moments to enjoy that if we are able to be present and less caught up in worrying about everything being perfect, then we are definitely going to have a good experience. And should the occasional drama happen, then you’ll be in better shape to roll with it.”
YOGA + MINDFULNESS = ONE CHILLED BRIDE