Although I have over 10 years of experience photographing weddings and have managed to see and work through every possible scenario, I still get pre-wedding anxiety. My heart races and I become a bear on the morning of a wedding! A wedding is a huge event, and no matter how many you do, there will be some stress involved. These are my top three tips to manage pre-wedding anxiety!
ONE: Pack the night before.
Pack the night before so that you’re not scrambling the day of, and forgetting something. It’s important to not wait until that morning – do it the night before! This will prevent you from forgetting something very important.
TWO: Create checklists.
Create checklists lots of checklists! I have one for my everything I need to bring to a wedding, which includes my gear, client products such as a bridal portrait or guest book I need to bring, snacks, an extra change of clothes, styling kits, my lighting gear, EVERYTHING!
I have a checklist that I prepare seven weeks prior to the wedding day. This is my photographic timeline and shortlists that I have at every event. This includes groupings, as well as the little things that I need to remember on the wedding day – such as take a break and snack!
THREE: Arrive an hour early.
Arrive early. And I mean really early, like an hour early. Running late causes me so much stress! So being there early to take my time to unpack and get my head straight and look around and start slow helps reduce stress. That extra hour gives me time to really focus, get my gear ready, and go over the timeline again. It allows me to decompress before the chaos of the wedding day.
Manage your pre-wedding anxiety.
I am grateful for this stress – it’s what pushes me to do better! And it means I care and want to do the best job I can. And what I have learned over the years, the people who are at the top of their game also have this stress that pushes them to do the best they can.
I don’t want to get to the point where it’s debilitating stress. But some stress is good. It helps us to react to the pressure and perform do our best. By having some strategies in place prior to the wedding day, you will ensure that you are not overwhelmed on the day of, and can do your best work.