Feeling those wedding day nerves?
Every bride and groom is bound to feel wedding day nerves at some point as the tension builds and the big day looms ever closer. Friends and family inevitably (and unwittingly) add to those nerves as they ask questions and chatter about the detail and get excited with you. Sometimes the worry about the wedding day nerves leads to more anxiety on the day itself, and worrying about being worried is never a great start to your nuptials!
So what can you do? Well, in my role as wedding celebrant I see many couples who are experiencing some degree of wedding day nerves and of course it’s natural to feel a little pressured by the sheer importance of the big day. There are some simple steps you can take to manage and alleviate your nerves – I have picked a few to share with you below:
1. Take time for yourselves
It’s easy to get stressed in an noisy and busy environment, everyone wanting to ask you a question, tell you something or give you something in the hours before your ceremony. Creating a little space for yourself on your own (or together) can give you a sense of peace and calm, time to collect your thoughts, settle yourself down and look forward to the day.
When we are nervous we experience physical and mental symptoms such as sweaty palms, increased heart rate, rapid breathing. When we are excited we experience exactly the same symptoms! The only difference is in the way we interpret it – the narrative we tell ourselves. So when your wedding day nerves kick in tell yourself it’s excitement. Change that voice in your head and instead of telling yourself ‘I feel nervous’ tell yourself ‘I feel really excited’. We feel much more positive about excitement than we do about nerves!
When those wedding day nerves kick in we breathe high up in our chest, taking quick shallow breaths which speeds up our metabolism further and creates a vicious circle. Be intentional about taking long, slow deep breaths, in for five, pause for five, out for five. This slows your system down and enables you to feel calm and in control. If possible stand or sit somewhere quiet for a few minutes before your ceremony and do some deep breathing
4. Let go and trust your team
I have seen grooms frantically rushing around giving a stream of instructions and checking on details just before their ceremony, while their bride to be was in hair and make up. This just adds tension to your day – let go of the need for control and just trust the people you have on your team. The best man has got the rings, you don’t need to keep checking. There comes a point when you have to accept that the preparation has been done, everything is in hand and it will all be fine, whether you worry or not…so choose not to!
As a wedding celebrant is it my job to ensure that the ceremony is perfectly orchestrated. I arrive early and spend time liaising with key people to make sure everything goes according to plan. Trust me – I’m good at this!
5. Slow down
We tend to speed up when we are nervous and this can lead to careless mistakes being made. My top tip when reading your vows is to take a deep breath at the start and intentionally slow down your speech. Speak at a much steadier pace than you normally would, to give your words time to land and be registered by your partner and guests. Pause whenever there is a comma, and look up at your partner between sentences. This will make you feel calmer and more reassured.
My job as a wedding celebrant is to make sure you both enjoy your ceremony so if you’d like a bespoke ceremony with a touch of sparkle just get in touch, I’d love to hear from you.