Our thought-filled meditation expert, Austin-based Paige Davis, weighs in with mindfulness tips and tools to tap into leading up to your big day
SUMMER OF LOVE
Summer season has arrived and wedding bells are ringing incessantly. While a wedding is an exciting time, it can also be filled with stress and expectations. When it comes to planning, coordinating logistics, and managing dynamics amongst family members – the preciousness of this sacred event can quickly turn into a likely setting for bride and groomzillas to grab control.
While this would not seem the obvious space or time to practice mindfulness, with the right intention and access to the tools that cater to circumstances, you can turn the frenzy of wedding planning into a meaningful new chapter where you are present, connected, and fully embodying the love that a wedding or any celebration can bring.
Mindfulness and meditation become especially relevant during important life milestones and celebrations because it helps us to access the part of our brain that allows us to be more present – which is really all that matters when it comes to the big day. Some other key benefits of meditation that matter during this time include:
- Increased focus and discernment that can come in handy when trying to choose invitations and cake.
- Emotional connectedness so we can feel more connected to ourselves and others.
- The ability to be less reactive and more responsive which can keep our bride/groomzilla at bay.
Below are a few tips that can easily be integrated into your event planning timeline. Whether you are 6 months out or your special day is quickly approaching, tap into these tools to fully treasure the meaning, sacredness, and joining together with your beloved on your wedding day.
WEDDING DAY MINDFULLNESS
1-6 Months Out – Connect with yourself and your partner.
Explore activities that are grounding and nurturing to you and your partner. This is an ideal time to explore new activities that you’ve been curious about that have been proven to be relaxing and reduce stress including meditation, yoga, walking in nature or taking baths. Really anything that allows you to restore and recharge.
1-3 Weeks Out– Invite present-moment practices into your routine.
Identify what feeling overwhelmed and stressed out feels like in your body and utilize practices that bring you into the present moment. Some physical and emotional signs of stress include trouble sleeping, unhealthy cravings, impatience, sarcasm, and feeling overwhelmed. By simply being aware that you are feeling stress, you are empowered to circumvent it by practicing some simple present-moment practices.
One easy practice is to take a pause where you are and simply notice your breath. You can then start to consciously breath through your nose. By breathing through the nose, we automatically access the parasympathetic nervous system which naturally calms and relaxes us. You can also silently repeat a calming mantra which can include a word like peace or love, or a more active phrase such as “all is well” or “I am calm and at peace.” By repeating a few times, you prevent yourself from traveling down the rabbit hole of rumination.
The Big Day – Be present.
The most important practice on this day is to allow yourself to be present and receive all of the love that is surrounding you. The best way to do this is to eliminate distractions. One way to do this is to unplug from your phone and other technology. I know this seems drastic, but technology is the quickest way to suck us out of present moment awareness. Assign a bridesmaid or family member to be in charge of your phone.
You can articulate beforehand what high priority issues you want to be alerted to and of course can always make room for the pre-wedding selfie, but in general, allow your hands and heart to be free. This is also an ideal time to tap into gratitude. Just acknowledging gratitude for yourself, your soon-to-be spouse, and then many friends and family that are all there to celebrate this important milestone in your life.
Place your hand on your heart throughout the day as both a way to enliven the properties inherent to the heart center such as love and compassion, as well as a symbol of both receiving and giving this precious gift of gratitude.