The RSVPs are in, the cake is ordered, and the marriage license has been issued — it’s wedding week!
You wedding is one of the most beautiful, emotional, exciting, and exhausting times of your life. From tying hundreds of ribbons to writing more thank-you notes than you can keep track of, the thought and detail that goes into wedding planning is enough to overwhelm even the most organized of brides.
As your wedding day approaches, your attention is demanded more and more. Friends and family are traveling from all over to see you, vendors turn to you to work out final details and timelines, not to mention, you have a soon-to-be spouse whom you want to cherish every waking moment with. And while you are bursting with excitement, you might also find yourself drowning in stress.
While weddings are beautiful, the stress and anxiety they can cause aren’t so pretty. The anxiety of never-ending to-dos, nervousness over your vows, and the new life stage you are about to enter are most likely keeping you up at night. But that’s just the beginning. The lack of sleep you experience leading up to your wedding day only puts you at risk for more frequent and intense bouts of stress. Here’s why this is not so great:
Lack of sleep makes us more reactive to stressful situations, meaning you may find yourself barking orders at your wedding planner, or much worse, your future in-laws. Sleep deprivation may even have an effect on your appearance. Yikes.
So how do you stay rested the week of your wedding to avoid becoming the bridezilla you never wanted to be? Here are a few tips:
1. Give yourself a bedtime and stick to it.
Yep. Just like when you were five. The best way to get a good night’s sleep consistently is to prioritize sleep. That means setting a bedtime and stick to it.
2. Delegate, delegate, delegate!
There is a reason you hire wedding planners… to help you plan! I understand there are certain tasks only you, the bride, can tackle, but I guarantee there are 10 friends or family members ready to help out at your call. Even if it’s something small you could really use the extra hands for. They love you! And this is a great way to include them in your big day.
3. Create a wind-down routine.
Our brains don’t magically shut off at the end of the day. In fact, they actually have to be prepped for sleep. About an hour before bed, start sending signals to your brain it’s time to wind down. Put down the laptop, dim the lights, and maybe even draw yourself. Whatever it takes to create a sleepy environment.
4. Which reminds me…stash the screens!
The blue light given off by electronic screens do the exact opposite of helping you wind down. So for the sake of your sleep, stash the screens and respond to emails in the morning.
5. Put it to paper.
Sometimes no matter how hard you try, wind down routine and all, you just can’t get your brain to shut off. Isn’t it amazing how as soon as your head hits the pillow ten more to-dos flood your thoughts. It’s like some sort of cruel joke. If that happens to you, try writing your thoughts down. Here’s a piece of advice from someone who has learned it the hard way: they won’t go away until you acknowledge them. Notice I didn’t say “do something about them.” An exercise as simple as writing it down can help keep your mind at ease.
6. Keep it up even after the big day!
Maintaining a healthy sleep hygiene lasts a lifetime. Even after your wedding week passes, it’s important you get quality sleep consistently and that means talking to your new spouse about expectations. I don’t know about you, but I am nervous about sharing a sleep space for the first time! My fiancé and I started by choosing the best mattress for us. I’d encourage you to do the same. Think of it as a wedding gift to yourself! We are different sleepers with different sleep preferences, but marriage is all about compromise. Through life’s ups and downs, a good night’s sleep just might keep you sane.
Now you are equipped to take on your wedding week stress free. Take a deep breath, be present and try and catch those ZZZs!
Big thanks to our guest blogger: Elizabeth, writer and newlywed, is on the editorial team at Mattress Advisor, an online start-up in Raleigh, NC. When she isn’t writing about sleep, she enjoys sharing the tips and advice she gathered over the months she planned her wedding last year.