What to do when you’re overwhelmed

The first thing you should know about me is that I hate making decisions. Actually, that’s not 100% true. My mom likes to say I am natural born leader and I will take charge of a class project, organizing roles and delegating tasks. I will make executive decisions left and right when my coworkers can’t decide where to go eat lunch. I even steamroll Kurt into design decisions in our apartment sometimes (sorry, Kurt!). But when it comes to make serious decisions about things that I won’t be able to change after making said decision…I lose it. I am so concerned with everyone else being happy that I get stressed thinking that I’ll make the wrong choice. Planning not just any wedding, but my wedding has caused levels of indecisiveness I never thought possible.

Kurt has taken the position of “whatever makes you happy” when it comes to most wedding decisions and while I’m glad he’s not trying to change my vision, I hate thinking that I’m alone in these decisions. Because even though I have a hard time making a decision, I cannot let go. I can’t just say “Oh, you decide!” For example, I have been throwing around the idea of doing an incredibly small wedding (wedding party and immediate family only). Essentially an elopement. Then we could all go out for a great dinner together and then call it a night. If I let someone else decide, like Kurt, he’d be so gung ho for that. But as friend of the blog, Kelsey, once told me, “If you grew up dreaming of a wedding, don’t forget that.”

SO thus is my internal monologue. “Part of me wants to elope, but if I do that, what if I regret it?” “I want a party at my wedding, so I need to invite everyone I know, right?” I can talk myself into an overwhelmed, stressed party of one reallllllly fast. Especially when I throw in graduate school, my thesis, work AND trying to maintain some sort of social life (this is why I only have 2 friends…).

Everyone has these feelings right? You’re overwhelmed, you don’t know where to go from there. Even if you’re not planning a wedding, you can find yourself so overwhelmed that you’re essentially immobile. I’ve got some sure fire suggestions for you and I’m hoping you’ve got some for me. You live and you learn, right?

Lean on someone

I have leaned on my mom for a lot over the years, but truthfully there is nobody better to act as my personal stress sponge. She provides constructive suggestions when she needs to, lets me figure things out on my own without being overbearing and tells me when to calm down. She is phenomenal at cutting the crap and telling me like it is. Carrie has also been the most amazing person when it comes to wedding stress. She will give me honest feedback whenever I need it. She also plays this role of ensuring my ideas are heard while also providing suggestions I wouldn’t have thought of. The two of them will be responsible for making a lot of wedding decisions because I am either incapable of doing so or I straight up do not care.

Make a list and cross things off

I’m talking a list of everything you do including things like “shower”, “pay bills” and “eat dinner”. One of the things that has helped me a lot with wedding planning amidst everything else going on is having a long to do list so I can easily check things off. I am guilty of adding something to my to do list moments before I do it just so I have something to check off.

Take a step back and breathe

When it comes to wedding planning, it is so incredibly easy to lose yourself in the details. When I was younger, I certainly didn’t think about transportation for guests, hotel room blocks, or even where I was going to stay after I actually got married. There are so many types of flowers that could end up in your bouquet and inevitably you’ll fall in love with something that is out of season. I never could have guessed the number of cake flavors and icing combinations. All I dreamed about was what sort of dress I would wear and who would be at the end of the aisle. On more than one occasion I have found myself needing to take five steps back and just breathing. Ask yourself, “will the color of my table napkins affect my quality of life?” The answer is probably no.

We all have high hopes for what will hopefully be one of the best days of our lives, but don’t get so lost in the planning that you stress yourself out over unnecessary things. Don’t worry about what everyone else wants, worry about what you want and go from there. Trust me I know this is so much easier said than done… but we’ve all got to start somewhere, right?

Sign off

If things are really starting to get to you and you are having trouble focusing or sleeping, you gotta take a break. Give yourself one hour (or if you’re really busy 30 minutes) where you go outside, sans phone and just take a mental break. Focus on your breathing, do some active meditation and bring yourself back down to earth. The way you’re feeling is not permanent. You are capable of amazing things. No matter what, you’ll get through it. Take 30 minutes and remind yourself of that.


I mean something incredibly specific here. On Facebook, there is a group called Dogspotting. Members of the group post pictures and videos of dogs they see in their daily lives. There are few rules but the key is that these can’t be dogs that people know. They’re literally strangers dogs. And it is the most wonderful Facebook page. Since joining (thanks for the add, Jackie!), my entire newsfeed is just cute dog after cute dog. It’s incredibly calming and forces me to smile and laugh. It usually only takes a minute or two of looking at dogs to relax myself and get back on track. Need an invite? Let me know!

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