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12 times your wedding will prepare you for married life

Your big day planning is more useful than you think…

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12 times your wedding will prepare you for married life
Your wedding planning is super useful. Image: Rebecca Douglas Photography

The skills you pick up planning your big day will be invaluable when it comes to acing married life...

1. How to manage money
Planning a wedding, however big or small, means managing a budget. We’ve all heard that money causes the most arguments for couples, but with the expert pound-stretching skills you’ll no doubt learn during planning, you’ll be set for life – whether it’s saving up for a deposit on a house or keeping a (slightly squiffy) eye on the honeymoon cocktail spend...

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2. Negotiation skills
Remember that time you channelled your inner-Morrocan souk rug-seller and bartered your way to a 10 per cent discount with your wedding caterers (plus free napkin hire – get in!)? The art of negotiation will stand you in good stead for married life. No one wants to get into a huge argument Every. Single. Night. over whose turn it is to wash the dishes, so turn on your killer negotiating charm to reach a conclusion you’re both happy with.

3. Friends and family are everything
Having all of your favourite people in one room to celebrate your day is off-the-scale special, and really brings it home just how important your family and friends are to you. Married life inevitably will have its ups and downs, but it will be these loved ones you’ll turn to again and again to celebrate with through the highs and support you through the lows. #squadgoals

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4. You shouldn’t try to keep up with the Joneses
It’s completely natural to have a drool over other people’s weddings, whether it’s your friend’s dress, Pippa Middleton’s £100k glass marquee or everything on Pinterest, but just because you don’t have these things at your wedding it doesn’t make your day any less awesome. The same goes for marriage; occasionally you might (secretly) compare your marriage to friends or celebrities, and on a bad day think everyone else is happier/more in love/richer than you and your man – but you’d be wrong. Cherish what you have (and perhaps step away from the Instagram stalking...). 


Image: Dottie Photography

5. It goes way too fast
It’s all you’ll hear in the run-up to the wedding – “Take it all in, because the day will fly by” – but it’s so true. From excitedly waking your bridesmaid at 4:30am and squealing “I’M GETTING MARRIED TODAY!!!”, to the emotion-fuelled final sing-along with your guests at your reception, your wedding day really will be a whirlwind of emotion. And this pretty much sums up life in general – it really does go by so fast. Enjoy it!  

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6. Getting dressed up is fun
You in your dream dress, him looking all handsome in his suit; chances are you’ll both be looking your absolute best on your wedding day. No one expects you to pull out all the stops like this every day (hey, he married you so he must embrace your SpongeBob SquarePants PJs too) but it’s nice to make the effort for each other every now and then, and to remind your husband how lucky he is.

7. It’s all about priorities
The very first thing you do when planning your big day is to work out what’s most important to you. Maybe it’s the food, or the music, or even finding a venue that lets you bring your beloved Dolly, the decrepit golden lab, along for the day. Marriage is pretty much the same. The number one priority will always be making sure you’re both happy and feel loved, but then it’s up to you to work out where your time and effort is spent together. Focusing on careers, travelling, starting a family; prioritise whatever is most important to you.

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8. Compromise is key
You want a three-course, sit-down meal, he wants a help-yourself BBQ. You want a romantic choreographed first dance, he wants to hide in the loos until it’s all over. A wedding is about compromise, much the same as the rest of married life. To have a happy marriage, one person can’t get their way all the time (yep, even if that person is you – sorry!) and compromise is key to making sure you both play an equal part in the relationship. It’s not always easy, but if you managed to reach an amicable agreement over the whole Maldives vs California honeymoon debate, you’ll be able to breeze through absolutely anything!


Image: Ana Lui

9. You’ll never please everyone
The sooner you accept that you won’t be able to keep everyone happy on your wedding day, the sooner you’ll be able to relax. Planning a child-free day? Some guests will relish the chance to leave their kids with a babysitter, while others will take it as a personal insult; that’s the way of the world. When you get married this won’t change, so don’t knock yourself out trying to keep friends/in-laws/family/the world and his wife happy at your own expense.

10. It’s worth the effort
Wedding planning can be stressful and sometimes you wonder if it’s all worth it. But when your friends text the next day to say that was the ‘BEST WEDDING EVER’ you know all that hard work has paid off. If you invest as much effort into your marriage as you did planning your day, you’re set for a long and happy life together!

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11. Speak up 
Wedding speeches rock. Who doesn’t go all mushy when they hear the groom tell a room full of people how much he loves his new wife? We’re not suggesting you and your Mr walk around with a tannoy, publicly declaring your love for one another, but never underestimate the importance of telling your partner how much they mean to you – at least every now and then.

12. It’s all about you
Your wedding is the perfect chance to celebrate all the things that make you ‘you’, from your favourite wine to the music you love. No wedding is the same, because no two couples are the same. Always remember your relationship is unique and never stop celebrating that and the things that make your world go round.

Words by Sarah Dawson

Want more? Here are the 10 best things about being married and seven things that will happen in the first year of marriage

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