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Burned Out CoupleWhen you start planning your wedding, you may feel as if you can take on the world. You make your lists, organize information, determine a budget, and contact vendors. The pieces seem to fall effortlessly into place until one day, you can’t tell a crocus from a tulip and choosing between fondant and buttercream icing makes your head spin. If you’re overwhelmed by the sheer number of choices, there are steps you can take to regain a sense of control.

Decision Fatigue and Analysis Paralysis

As human beings, we must make choices about our lives every single day. Sometimes, they involve inconsequential matters: the songs in our playlists, the flavors of coffee we drink, or the programs we watch after work. Others are more significant, such as how to allocate our time or how much money to spend on the things we want. Yet we may reach a point where we feel mentally drained. We become tired of evaluating options and, out of frustration, make choices that we later regret.

These experiences are the essence of what some experts call “decision fatigue.” It’s been cited for potential negative impacts on political, financial, business, and policy decisions. The online financial service Mint points to its connection to behaviors such as impulse buying. The advocacy organization ONE describes how it can even cause financially stressed families to sink deeper into poverty.

Money concerns and other worries amplify our minds’ tendencies to fixate on worst case scenarios. While it causes some individuals to make unwise choices, others may find themselves unable to make decisions at all. Referred to as “decision paralysis” or “analysis paralysis,” it’s the reason we can’t pick out centerpieces and figure out whether we want Indian cuisine or a food truck for the reception.

Take Advantage of These Coping Strategies

Wedding Wire’s Laura Rodrigue discusses decision fatigue and paralysis in a May 2019 piece. Many couples experience burnout at some point during the wedding planning process. It can happen during the long stretch between booking vendors and attending the wedding shower, or it could rear its ugly head in the weeks before walking down the aisle. Either way, you feel stressed and apathetic. Deadlines come and go with no action taken. Vendors email and call, hoping that you haven’t ghosted them. You get the idea. The Knot breaks down common reasons for this wedding-related decision angst:

  • Not enough rest
  • Pressures from your family
  • Lack of expertise
  • Budget concerns
  • Too much time apart from your partner

Fortunately, you won’t stay in this mental morass forever. Stepping back from planning temporarily ends your overstimulation. Such a mini-vacation may be in order, whether it’s a few nights of binge-watching your favorite show or spending quality time with your future spouse. You could also benefit from a little bit of research, focusing on top priorities, and delegating some decisions to others. If your partner is passionate about wines and you don’t know the difference between zinfandel and pinot noir, perhaps it’s best to let that individual choose one for your open bar. Meanwhile, you may opt for tulips over crocuses because of price constraints or find an Indian food truck that’s perfect for your event. Finally, you may simply need to forgo some last-minute details in the final weeks. You could chuck them in a mental bucket to be forever forgotten.

Beat Burnout and Get Back on Track

Wedding planning brings excitement, but it can also add more stress. Mental gridlock and impulse choices are symptoms of bigger problems that you must address. Taking a break, changing your perspective, and getting help from trusted associates are important keys for getting past fatigue and indecision.

Category: Wedding Planning

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