WEDDING PLANNING DURING A PANDEMIC
As we continue to live in a world completely changed by an insane and VERY REAL worldwide pandemic, it’s important we carry on with the mindset that things are different, and they will be for a long time. It may sound discouraging, but it can be freeing to throw away the idea that “things will go back to ‘normal’ or ‘the way they used to be’” because we need to face the fact - the world is forever changed by the last two years. Even weddings and the way we go about planning them has changed. Here are a few mindset changes and tips that I used, and you can too if you’re entering wedding planning during this ongoing pandemic.
Photo Credit: HPW Productions
1.Have Patience: In this season, try to have patience for yourself, partner, wedding planner, vendors, and everyone around you. While it can be tempting to lash out and be frustrated with the ever changing world around you, remember to take a moment to breathe, have grace, patience, and compassion for everyone. It’s tough out there right now and since the world is constantly changing, your vendors aren’t going to immediately have all the answers, so give them a beat to get back to you. It is just as frustrating for them as it is for you. If we’ve learned anything these last two years, I hope that we can see now that there is so much going on in the world, life is precious, and we shouldn’t waste it being upset or worrying about things we can’t change.
Your wedding day is important and your wedding vendors want the best for you so have some understanding and compassion for them. They have a tremendous workload, weddings are booming after the year hiatus they took. Everyone is very busy, overworked and tired of the constantly changing rules. They’re in the same boat as you, they don’t know when things will get better, when they will change, or what you should do. They don’t know everything, so coming in with the understanding that they aren’t miracle workers and are truly trying their best to help you out will hopefully keep you grounded.
Photo Credit: Iwalani Photography
3.Accept Change: We’ve said it a thousand times now and we’ll probably say it a thousand times more, the world is always changing and it’s not going to stop anytime soon. Different parts of the world are moving forward, while others are seeing some backslide, so it’s hard to predict what things will be like for your wedding in one year, five months, or even three weeks, seriously who knows! Living in Hawaiʻi, things were looking up at the beginning of summer, and then in August our numbers were through the roof and weddings had to take a serious cut in numbers. Be prepared for change and it’ll be less jarring when it inevitably happens. Prepare for the worst, expect the best! Being malleable to the change will save you a lot of heartache.
Photo Credit: HPW Productions
4.Be Flexible: Because of these constant changes, it's important to remain flexible. Sway like ʻohe (bamboo) in the wind, go with the flow, or as my husband likes to do, be ready to “make game time decisions.” We went into every aspect of planning with open minds knowing that things may need to change. When you remain flexible throughout the planning process, it makes changes to your plans less difficult to deal with. We had to adjust our plans, venue, and caterer a few times before we landed on solid ground. I understand it can be a lot, but don’t give up! Things have a way of working out, especially if you set what your intentions are, so don’t stress over it too much.
5.Back-up plans: I planned during the pandemic and it was tiring, but we had several back-up plans. My partner and I sat down and had a discussion about what we did and didnʻt want and made that the priority, while the rest of the plans were able to slightly shift around that. We knew going into planning that date was most important to us, so no matter what happened, we were going to get married on that day. We sort of had tiered planning: If we were able to do everything we wanted, what did that look like? From there, we worked our way down to the smallest possible grouping. If we were restricted to 25 guests for the outdoor ceremony who would be there? If it had to be cut to ten, who made that group? Same went for the reception. So it is important to figure out what your ideal wedding looks like, and if you need to narrow it down, what would that look like? Who will you need to cut or what do you do if that’s impossible? Are you willing to push your date? At this point we really don’t know when we’ll be able to safely have a wedding for 200+ people, so maybe you need to rethink what your plans are if you don’t want to wait. And at this point I invite you to rethink a small intimate wedding or even eloping and the many reasons why it might be a better option if you can’t wait to marry the love of your life. (Shameless plug of my previous blog about this)
At the end of the day the most important thing is that you have found your person and you are both in love. The rest of the details are not nearly as important as the bond you have and this next step in your life. Remember to breathe through it all, remain patient, understanding, ready for change, flexible, and make back-up plans on back-up plans to help you get through it. Take time to actually enjoy the wedding planning journey, it can be stressful and tiring, but it doesn’t have to be! May the wedding planning odds be ever in your favor.
Photo Credit: Kenzie Kate Photography
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