How to have a stress-free elopement: 7 tips to avoid anxiety during planning

Eloping over Yosemite

Your wedding day should be one of the happiest days of your life. Unfortunately, so many couples spend the days leading up to and even the day-of riddled with stress and anxiety.  Elopements aren’t for everyone, but we wholeheartedly believe that elopements can be the perfect option for many couples because of how stress-free they are. Here are 7 tips to have a relaxed elopement with as little stress as possible:

Make a list of elopement priorities.

When you start the planning process, think about what things are most important to you. Pick two or three areas that you want to be perfect. For example, you might prioritize your elopement photos and your dress, or you might care the most about your location and ceremony. Whatever you decide, make that the focus of your planning process so you know where to put your energy. This is one of the best ways to avoid stress, because it helps you avoid getting too caught up in spending time on all of the unimportant details that you really don’t care about.

Plan to write your vows far in advance.

For some couples who choose to write their own vows, it can be the most stressful part of the preparation process. There’s a lot of pressure because of the significance of what you’re writing. It’s a beautiful thing! Unfortunately, it can cause anxiety in the weeks leading up to your elopement. Set aside time to work on writing your vows early on to reign in procrastination.  

Couple holding hands in the Adirondacks

Involve friends and family in planning your elopement.

Once you decide to elope, one of the most anxiety-inducing steps can be telling your friends and family. Your loved ones might be disappointed that they won’t be a part of your special day. Present them with ways to be involved in the planning process! Not only does this take stress off of you, but it helps others feel more involved. 

Alternatively, you can do something like Danielle and Anthony, by eloping with a small group of your family and friends. Check out this article that tells their story. Speaking of guests…

Be intentional about your guest lists and stand by it.

Having an elopement doesn’t always mean no guests. Your special day is about what you want. That means having people there that won’t be stressful or anxiety inducing. Along with your partner, consider who those people are and stand by it. Remember that, despite how others may react, it’s your wedding your way. 

Bride and groom dancing in Wilmington, NY near Whiteface Mountain

Find healthy distractions when you feel stressed.

Unfortunately, you may experience moments of stress, overwhelm, or anxiety when planning your elopement (hopefully not too much, though!). In these moments, try and find ways to distract yourself so you can come back with a fresh perspective. Perhaps reminisce over photos of you and your significant other or spend time with them. Remind yourself why you’re going to all this trouble in the first place: starting a beautiful new chapter of your love story.

Plan with lists to declutter your mind.

Lists, lists, and more lists! Swirling around in your head, remembering that deposit you have to pay, or the dress you have to pick up, or your partner’s shoe size doesn’t help you much. Write everything down as you think of it so that you don’t lose track. Consider buying a designated notepad or making a note on your phone dedicated to elopement planning. 

In addition to making your own lists, you can also use expert lists as a guide. You can find lists of legal documents you need, activities to do in your location, or even an extensive packing list for adventurous elopements like this one

Go on an elopement planning date.

Two is better than one, right? If you’re feeling overwhelmed, ask your partner out on an elopement planning date! Make it fun and romantic, maybe go for a brainstorming walk, plan in a coffee shop, or discuss it over ice cream. Whatever your style, take the stress out of planning by romanticizing the process. This is a great way to not only make it less stressful, but maybe even make the process enjoyable (I know, crazy to think that wedding planning can be enjoyable).

Set a stress-free budget.

Decide with your partner exactly how much you want to spend. It’s a good idea to do this before booking any vendors or travel, but it may be helpful to at least inquire with a few of your favorite vendors to make sure your budget is reasonable. Keeping track of your elopement costs will help reduce stress surrounding your finances. Check out this cost breakdown of elopements versus weddings from Brides.com here

Bride and groom having a stress free elopement in upstate New York on a mountain top.

Delegate planning elements where you can.

Identify what’s overwhelming you the most and see if you can delegate some of the responsibility! If your budget allows, finding a professional could be extremely beneficial. Therey are people who  can take care of everything from flowers/decor to travel arrangements and everything in between. (Bonus: If you’re eloping in the Adirondacks, use our list of amazing wedding florists in the Adirondacks).

Embrace the unpredictabilities of elopements.

If you’re eloping, avoiding stress probably contributed to that decision! Embrace leaving some of the small stuff up to chance. This way, you don’t have to stress every little detail. For example, if you’re eloping outdoors, there is a possibility that the weather won’t be favorable. Decide right in the beginning that you will go with the flow, enjoy the process, and be excited to get married no matter what happens (for better or worse, right?). 

Bonus: Hire the right team!

We can speak from experience, the photographer you hire to capture your elopement can make or break your day. That’s why we work to reduce the stress in your elopement planning. We use our knowledge, experience, and tools to take as much of the pressure off of you as we can!  Ready to start planning the elopement of your dreams? Schedule a consultation call with us here!

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