Avoiding bridal burnout

Look and feel refreshed, relaxed and radiant for your big event

The road to the aisle can have many twists and turns. Some days it’s filled with enthusiasm and happiness, other days it can be a little trying on your nerves. Don’t let a case of bridal burnout leave you looking and feeling haggard on your big day.

Here are 17 stress-busting ways to grab a well-deserved break from the madness.

Hit the spa. Treat yourself to a relaxing massage, nourishing body treatment, or even a hydrating manicure or pedicure that includes a massage to relieve some stress. Make an outing of it with your bridesmaids and let yourself be pampered. You'll come out looking and feeling better.

Get moving: Exercise your stress away. Really. It works. Exercise prompts the body to release endorphins resulting in a natural high to help you feel better. Better yet, it has the added advantage of creating a healthier you, toned up to fit into your wedding dress and better equipped to handle wedding-related stress.

Soak in the tub. A nice, hot bath will relax your muscles and your mind. For optimal stress-quenching results, add soothing bath salts, some aromatherapy candles and a massaging bath mat.

Eat regular, balanced and moderate meals. Avoid excess sugar, caffeine, alcohol, etc. All of these can make you feel even more worn out after the buzz wears off and you come crashing down. Instead of automatically grabbing a caffeine fix like coffee or soda, grab some water and spike it with slices of orange, lemon or lime. If you’re properly hydrated, you’ll feel better overall, plus your skin will glow.

Call home. Even though you’ll be celebrating with everyone soon, keep calling friends and family. In the weeks before your wedding, talking with the folks you love most will keep you feeling connected and sane.

Start a journal. The ideas and dreams racing through your mind right now are ones that you won’t ever want to forget. Grab a blank book and start writing in a stream-of-consciousness style.

Breathe. During tense times, breathing may be erratic, or we hold our breath, which constricts the amount of oxygen that our brain receives. Find a quiet place to sit with your eyes closed and simply let your mind rest as you breathe deeply through your nose. You’ll feel recharged after just a few seconds.

Immerse yourself in a new project. Get some distance from wedding planning by diving into a creative endeavor that will change your focus for a while. Try reading, organizing your closet, baking cookies – these activities are easy and low stress.

Plan a bachelorette weekend. Instead of planning a one night bachelorette bash, consider a more meaningful weekend retreat for the bridal party. A few days away from the hectic schedule can do wonders for any bride’s sanity and restore her to a glowing state of happiness and serenity before the big day.

Head outdoors. A healthy dose of fresh air could be all that you need to relax when stress levels run high. Go for a relaxing stroll in the great outdoors. Soaking up the quiet beauty of nature will help clear the mind and perk up the mood.

Sleep. The No. 1 stress buster is to get enough sleep. Your body regains its normal functions and cycle when you sleep. Don’t sacrifice sleep no matter how busy you may be. Even if you don’t fall asleep, closing your eyes for a few moments of quiet can be just enough to make you feel more rested and refreshed.

Talk to your groom. Being able to ventilate your feelings is a form of release. Confide with your groom about your worries. Having him by your side as you work through these feelings will help keep stress at bay.

Keep laughing! Laughter truly is the best medicine. Laugh your heart out with a funny movie.

Consider hiring a wedding planner. They can alleviate doubts, answer questions, and avoid the potential pitfalls that occur when inexperienced couples attempt to negotiate with vendors without wedding industry knowledge.

Love your vendors. Another way to keep your happiness level high: Work with only people you like. Hire wedding vendors only if you respect their skills and find them congenial. This occasion is too important to be spending time with those that are difficult.

Delegate. You may be able to delegate some chores or tasks. Don’t be shy about asking your partner, friends or relatives to help you with some of these.

Reconnect with your spouse-to-be. Plan a fun, low-key outing together. Take a stroll through a farmer’s market, visit an art exhibit, or linger over a cappuccino at a favorite coffee shop. Enjoy life’s little pleasures together and make a point of talking about something other than the wedding.

Yes, the weeks running up to the wedding day are demanding. But if you take time to purge the stress regularly and intentionally, you will have a great foundation for a happy and healthy wedding day.