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10 Things Everyone Who’s Planning A Wedding Should Know

10 Things Everyone Who’s Planning A Wedding Should Know

The Big Day is one you will never forget, and though planning it seems like a dream in the beginning, there are always a few hiccups that bring around the reality that is wedding planning. But don’t let it overwhelm you. Millions have gone before you and lived to tell about it. Here are a few things you should know as you make your journey to the aisle.

1. You’re going to offend, feel guilty about, or disagree with at least one person during your wedding planning.

In fact, that number may be a little bit larger than you expect. I can’t tell you how many times I had someone say, “You’re not going to do that, are you? Wouldn’t you rather have this?” Just smile, be polite, and keep plugging on with whatever you and your fiancé would like on your day.

2. Don’t get looped into the “wedding” cost trap.

Have you ever noticed that anything with the word “wedding” in it is three times as expensive as the exact same item in the “party” category? Don’t get sucked into thinking that just because the word “wedding” is in it, you have to have it. BBC’s comedy Show, Man Stroke Woman, has a hilarious video depicting just what I’m talking about. Think outside the box (and the wedding category) to find cheaper alternatives that are just as beautiful for your wedding.

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3. Make a checklist of the pictures you’d like to have taken.

Pinterest works really well for this. As a matter of fact, Pinterest was my wedding planner. You can actually just pin the photos you like and send the board to your photographer for reference at your wedding. Be specific with the family wedding photos, especially, and not just with your photographer, but with all involved members of the family, so everyone knows where they should be at the right time.

Alicia Lawrence Wedding

    4. Skip the rituals that don’t really matter to you.

    I went through the list of traditions and read up on the history before I decided to incorporate them into my wedding and reception. Here’s what one bride had to say about the history surrounding the garter toss. Make your own decisions about which traditions you’d like to uphold and which you’d like to leave to the history books. Instead of doing the garter toss at my wedding, I gave the bouquet and the garter to the two couples in the room who’ve been married the longest.

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    5. Plan for the worst, but hope for the best.

    If you are planning to have your wedding at an outdoor venue, you want to be sure to have a guaranteed back-up plan should the weather be less than desirable. If it’s in a wooded area or by water, you may want to consider ways to keep bugs away, as the last thing you or your guests want is to leave the reception with bug bites all over. My recommendation is something like this mosquito magnet trap to keep your space, and your face, clear from itchy marks.

    6. Delegate, delegate, delegate.

    Let me just say from experience that putting together programs and/or favors the night before your wedding should not be a tradition to continue. I’ve made that mistake and so have many of my friends and family members. If you’re running tight on a deadline, don’t be afraid to ask for help. The sooner the better.

    7. Splurge on the important things, but not everything.

    There are some things that I wish I would have spent a little more money on, like the photography, for our wedding. But there are others things that maybe weren’t quite as important. I was astonished at the price per slice of wedding cake and for flowers and didn’t want to spend hundreds of dollars on things that weren’t going to last past one day. Instead I shopped around to get the best deal I could. I actually had a local lady who baked as a hobby make our cake. It was delicious and didn’t cost a fortune.

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    8. Take the day off before your wedding.

    Everything flies by so quickly that you’ll wish you had more time just to visit with people, especially if you don’t see your relatives often. Take, at least, the day off before to hang out with your wedding party and family and enjoy just being together.

    9. Have at least one other person in the know.

    Typically, this person should be your wedding planner, but whoever you choose, make sure they are reliable and have a great memory. If you don’t want a wedding planner, ask a friend out of the wedding party to be your in-the-know person or even a relative who would be willing to do it. Before the wedding, make sure you go over every detail of your wedding day plan so both of you know what will be going on and if anything happens, your go-to person can pick up the slack.

    10. The day goes by faster than you can possibly imagine.

    One of the best pieces of advice I was given for my wedding day was to stop at least three times during the day to just take it all in. You will see so many people and experience so many emotions that it’s impossible to process it all. By stopping and looking around, I was able to see just how special it all was.

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    Featured photo credit: Pic Jumbo Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com

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    Last Updated on January 17, 2019

    8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

    8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

    In life, we all need to be conscientious of what we are doing. You don’t need to live a life of stress if you don’t want to. You can achieve peace and happiness in life by carefully building mindfulness exercises into your life’s routine.

    Exercising mindfulness isn’t rocket science and as importantly, you can do it. It will, however, take a few tries to get into the groove of things but once you get it, it is like riding a bike, you will never lose it.

    Trust me. It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. In this article, I will share with you 8 mindfulness exercises that will help you to boost your energy, vitality and live a more peaceful and happier life.

    Why Is It Hard to Live A Peaceful And Happy Life?

    Our Habitat Has Become Too Technological

    The world has accepted the idea that technology is often the cure for all evil. We have accepted, as a society, that everything technological will make us live a better life without fully investigating the many side effects that modernity brings.

    There are a number of technological side effects that have a tremendous impact on your life that the media rarely tells you about.[1] Some of them include self-harm, economic inequality, having less sex, and even suicide. The global community is becoming less happy because of technology.

    How can anybody live a peaceful and happy life when they are depressed? Technology advancements, ladies and gents, is a major reason for why we are living a poor life because it has infiltrated our lives too much.

    According to my research, Americans spend an average of 8 hours a day looking at the computer screen — The average screen time spent on smartphones alone is about 20 hours per week. That’s a lot! No wonder why living a happy and peaceful life is so difficult these days.

    Too Many People Don’t Want to Unplug

    Americans check their phones an average of 80 times during vacation.[2] Some admit to checking their smartphones 300 times every single day. In countries like Brazil, India and China, the situation is no different.

    The reality is that people are constantly plugged into technological devices and this behavior is literally making people all over the globe fight an inner war with themselves, which consequently makes them very sad. As we know, war is the enemy of peace which won’t make anybody happy.

    Listen carefully:

    We have a global anxiety epidemic because people don’t want to unplug from their smartphones and most people aren’t doing anything to fix it. It is a sad state of affairs but very real. This obsession with technology is turning us into perishable robots who live terrible lives.

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    The era of anxiety is here to stay. There is little doubt about it. We can, however, fight back with the best remedy of all — We call it mindfulness!

    Thank God there is an antidote to this whole technological madness. Without further ado, let’s go straight to the mindful exercises.

    8 Mindfulness Exercises to Start Practicing

    There are tons of mindfulness exercises available for you to engage with out there.[3] In the paragraphs below, I will include the best ones I’ve personally tried or have seen my close friends and family members try.

    Are you ready for it? Let’s go!

    1. Pray Daily

    You should pray on a daily basis. Why is that you may ask — Well, because science has told us to do so.

    When people pray, they feel peaceful, almost eliminating anxiety. Worries become secondary, and often gives people energy and hope to cope with the difficulties of life.

    Prayer can make you more confident and focused. Prayer also helps you with self-control, helps to control pain, and can protect you against illnesses and disorders like cancer and high blood pressure. At least, this is what researchers from Harvard Medical School have said.[4]

    Pray. You won’t regret it.[5]

    2. Pay Attention to Your Inner Thoughts

    A lot of people allow themselves to be influenced by their negative thoughts. Be different and resist believing in them. It is a bad habit that can lead to unhappiness.

    By the way, if you do feel this way, chances are high that somebody other than you put these thoughts into your head.

    Here is my secret to combat this cancer — look at things objectively. I bet that if you look at things as they are, you will realize that most if not all of your negative thoughts are only inside of your head.

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    If you pay close attention, you will quickly realize that these voices aren’t worth your time. Believe me — Ignoring them and looking at things with objectivity is often the best course of action.

    This article can guide you to beat negative thoughts:

    How to Stop Automatic Negative Thoughts When You’re Overwhelmed

    3. Smile Often

    Smiling will slow down your heart. It will also relax your body because when you smile, your body releases endorphins which in itself has a number of positive benefits for you as a person.

    Smile often! You may want to smile early in the morning, during the day, and late in the evening. It is amazing what happens to you when you decide to smile instead of being grumpy.

    Surrender your problems to a nice smile. You will notice two things. First, most people just don’t which makes them live a miserable life. Second, if you decide to smile often, you will eventually smile unconsciously which is the ideal.

    The moment that you smile unconsciously, you then know that you are truly happy.

    4. Organize Your Working Desk

    A messy desk will make you less productive and can agitate and overstimulate you. You don’t want that.

    When you clear your desk, you engage in deep inner-thinking and your systematic decision making ends up becoming therapeutic.

    Most people realize that they are most creative when their creative space is clean and organized. The former often makes people more aware of what they are doing which lends to less stress and more productivity.

    Organizing your desk will also make you more energetic and focused because order often decreases chaos which is a condition that often slows down daily progress.

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    5. Celebrate Your Friend’s Victories

    I love this mindful exercise. One of the best ways to live a happy and peaceful life is to celebrate the victories of others. When you do that, you automatically make your friends in a better mood which makes you in a better mood, as well.

    Happiness is contagious! We might as well celebrate others as much as we can. If you find out that your peer has won an award, celebrate with him! If your friend is the recipient of a local charity award, celebrate with her!

    What is also awesome is that when you celebrate with others, they often celebrate with you in return. This, ladies and gentleman, will make you feel fantastic. You can’t go wrong with this one, period.

    6. Listen to Your Spouse/Partner

    God put someone in your life for a reason. You might as well listen to him or her.

    I listen to my wife everyday. In fact, I often ask the following question to her, “Amanda, what are your thoughts about…” or “What am I missing about…” It is shocking what I hear back from her. Without her having much context and perspective, by the art of observation in my own nonverbal behavior and the behavior of others, she accurately gives me incredible insights which helps me out with living my life to the fullest.

    I’m a firm believer that spouses are supposed to engage in interpersonal communication every day. I most definitely do and will continue doing it. You should do the same.

    7. Give Yourself a Break from Technology

    You can’t be in total equilibrium if your computerized devices control your life. You must get away from technology on a daily basis.[6]

    How do you do that? This is my formula:

    First, take this smartphone control test. It is only ten questions but this test will place you somewhere in the human robot cycle continuum.

    If your score is between 25-30, take a break from the computer (or smartphone, pad, laptop/desktop) every twenty minutes and stop being on a computerized device after 8:00pm.

    If you score between 30-35, still take a break every 20 minutes but stop being on these devices at 5:00pm.

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    If you score more than 35, you need to take action immediately.

    Limit computer use as much as possible throughout the day. Give yourself as many breaks from the computer as possible. Are you ready for the challenge?

    8. Go Exercise

    Go exercise at least three times a week. I don’t care if you need to workout early in the morning, late in the evening, on the weekends or during work days. Working out is absolutely imperative for you to live happy and peaceful life.

    The stresses of the modern world are too much for you to neglect this important mindfulness exercise. When you go to the gym, you burn calories, focus on activities one step at a time, your mind relaxes, anxiety decreases, you sweat and often think about topics unrelated to your work place among many other benefits.

    You must exercise at least three hours each week for optimum results. Why? Just take a look at all the benefits of regular exercising:

    12 Benefits of Regular Exercise You Should Know

    The Bottom Line

    It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. Now that our habitat has become too technological and many people just don’t want to unplug, engaging in daily prayer, celebrate your friends’ victories, and listening to your spouse are among the best ways to be mindful about what you are doing and how you are living.

    It is possible to live a happy and peaceful life. It only depends on you.

    Go exercise! Take a break from technology and invest in you! Life is too short for distractions.

    More Resources About Mindfulness

    Featured photo credit: Lesly Juarez via unsplash.com

    Reference

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