Your Wedding Does Not Have To Be The ‘Best Day Of Your Life’

Five Things I Wish I'd Known Before My Wedding Day  (3)

Don’t get me wrong, a wedding is undoubtedly a very important day, but it is not your one shot at happiness or your singular life defining moment. By that I mean, even if the day was a complete disaster and everything that could go wrong did, the actual act of getting married is just one little flash in a life full of potentially joyful occasions!

The pressure the wedding industry puts on couples is ridiculous. “Oh it’s the most important day of your life!”, “This will be the best day you’ve ever had!” they squawk. And yes, while it is undoubtedly a special day, it does not have to be the “best day of your life”.

Our wedding was was absolutely one of my top five life highlights, but I feel like claiming it was “the best” would be a bit of a lie. That’s not to say that our wedding wasn’t completely amazing, but so was buying our first house, quitting my day job to blog full time, launching my own magazine… There are many more days in my life that I’ve loved and boiling your complete happiness down to one very specific and pre-planned moment only sets you up for disappointment if things don’t go exactly to plan. It also makes you put an extreme amount of pressure on yourself to make everything utterly perfect.

Can you think of any other event in your life that you have amazing memories from that was planned to the very last second? Of course not! Most of your fondest times had a bit of spontaneity around them – those nights out you didn’t even bother to re-do your make up and ended up on a wild adventure, the time you bumped into this cute guy and ended up falling in love, when you booked a last minute holiday and had the most amazing two weeks ever! These moments of unexpected joy are rarely pre-planned to the last minute detail, and I think there’s something to be said for letting your wedding be a bit like this too.

Most of our best experiences come from letting things happen naturally, so resist the urge to schedule every second of your wedding. Not only is that a recipe for extra stress (“Oh my God, its 5.02 and dinner was supposed to start at 5pm on the dot! What’s gone wrong!?”) but it stops you enjoying it. Don’t decide how the day is supposed to go before you’ve even got there. Let things happen, have fun with it, maybe even let things get a little messy. It will definitely make for better stories to tell!

Most wedding schedules run a bit late, so instead of micromanaging the whole thing and freaking yourself out, have just the major events scheduled (ceremony start time, sitting down for food, entertainment kick off) but be a bit more loose and leisurely with the rest. Let your wedding suppliers do that they do best and for goodness sakes, CHILL! This is supposed to be fun remember!?

You’re getting married, that is an utterly amazing thing, and if you do end up having the most perfect wedding day then YAY! However before you walk down the aisle, take some time to realise that perfection is basically impossible to reach because life is far from perfect. This is not a movie wedding, this is real life, and real life sometimes throws ridiculous curve balls at us. Trust me, the best thing you can do to make sure you have the best day possible is to just make sure you enjoy it.

Your wedding day may well be the best day of your life, I really hope it is, but if it’s not that does not mean that your marriage (AKA the thing that is really important) is set up to be anything else but completely wonderful.



  1. THANK YOU! A friend got married recently and I ended up having to step in as photographer with 10mins notice. Her booked photographer got the flu and was unable to arrange cover/attend. DISASTER but not world ending. I got the shots and she loves them but she is still talking about how he ruined the whole day 🙁

  2. Holly

    In the lead up to our wedding, hubby and I were sat in the car and that song came on ‘This is gonna be the best day of our lives…’ And Jim quickly said: ‘That’ll be our wedding day!’

    I grinned and thought he was sweet for saying so but then he quickly stopped himself. ‘Actually… No. I don’t want our wedding day to be the best day of our lives.’

    I looked at him a bit shocked. What did he mean?

    ‘Well, then it kind of implies the rest of your life will just be going downhill. I want all our days to be the best days.’

    ooh Jim. I do love you! So true.

  3. Sound advice. You’re right Kat, it’s the unplanned events that are usually the best. But of course you want this particular day to be up there…. especially as you’re spending a lot of money. As a Photographer we’re there to make sure that all the big and little moments get recorded, and this should warm the cockles for years to come and even show that the day was even better than perhaps thought. So best to take a chill pill and go with the flow. If you’ve done your best to plan meticulously then surely on the day you really must leave it in the hands of the professionals and simply enjoy.

  4. refreshing as always and I couldn’t agree with this more!
    This is exactly why we had a surprise wedding… because we had lots of other fun stuff going on that year and we didnt want the only focus of conversation when we were with our family and friends to be the wedding.
    It was an awesome day and more importantly a massive party but we’ve had lots of awesome days and massive parties since and will continue to do so. x

  5. kirsty

    Completely agree, not to mention I am, if not a little more excited for my honeymoon in Thailand to experience lots of new things together!

    Mine and kanes commitment and life started way before our wedding, this is just legalising it, making it a legal obligation for him to love me (haha) and a chance for a day of fun and laughter with my close ones! I think if everything went perfect… It wouldn’t be us. organised mess all the way!

  6. Absolutely spot on. Your wedding is wonderful, exciting and special, but hopefully this is just the beginning, and the best is yet to come!

  7. Eloise

    Thank you!! I have become a bit obsessed with the agenda for our Wedding in September and know I will be a worry pot on the day if we start to run 5 minutes behind schedule (must be the project manager in me). You have made me realise to take a step back and saviour the day rather than “run” the day.

  8. Sonia

    I concur. Our wedding day was fabulous in a bubble kind of way, I kind of floated through it. We purposely had as few fixed points as possible so that the day could flow and surprises could happen and it also made the day last longer (in a good way), there wasn’t a rush to get from one ‘event’ to the next.Our day didn’t go by in a flash as people often report, it was much more dream-like.
    We also had sort of music markers to change pace and feel without stopping everyone completely, they were a way of subtly signalling that somethnig new was happening.
    I really chime with Holly’s Jim, I sincerely hope it’s not all down-hill from now on.
    I thought there would be a total emotional come-down afterwards, it hasn’t yet happened. I loved the planning, loved the day now I want to get on with the next adventure.

  9. @ Sonia, I love that idea of letting the music guide people through the day and it not being too structured!
    Great advice Kat ! xxx

  10. Oh this post couldn’t be any more perfect!
    I’ve always said my wedding day wasn’t my happiest Day and that was long before brides had the added stress of making their weddings blogable and Pinterest worthy!

    I think you’ve hit the nail on the head when you’ve said those spontaneous days are some of the happiest and I really want to echo what you said to other brides about just chilling and going with the flow!

    Cheers Kat!

  11. Sally

    I think the wedding industry does put a lot of pressure on it being ‘the best day of your life’ mine was always going to be a bit random as I was 7 mths pregnant. I loved the day bits, the ceremony was so emotional and meal and speeches were great but the reality was I was exhausted by the evening – the dancing was a bit of a disaster – I love a good boogie but 7 mths pregnant … hmmm I wont go into details but safe to say pelvic floor was not up to it! Our honey moon was truly fab in the Scilly Isles, possibly the most romantic place I have ever been to, I couldn’t fly as I was late in the pregnancy and it was the nearest to being abroad we could manage. The best day of my life well that was when my son arrived 3 months later, I couldn’t stop smiling and all those silly wedding details I worried about seemed totally daft after that!

  12. Gemma

    I wish I’d seen this a week ago before my wedding. As I returned to work today being greeted with hopeful faces asking me how it went, and all I could say was, yeah it was good. Made me realise, NO my wedding day was not the best day of my life. It was a disaster. My bridesmaids were completely useless, I was left to basically plan and run the whole thing on my own. The catering/bar showed up more than 2hours late with some of the services we had booked just not even showing up. I hope in hindsight I manage to look at it fondly, but right now all I can say was it was the most stressful day of my life and if I had the option to do it again, I wouldn’t!!!


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