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February 17, 2020

How to write your wedding vows

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One of the biggest questions asked by Brides and Grooms alike, is what the hell do I write in my vows?. This question popped up again this morning, in one of the many Bridal Facebook Groups that I am a part of – so I thought I would share my response here!

Exchanging wedding vows, in my opinion, is the most intimate part of the wedding day! Whether you choose to do it privately with each other, or over loud speaker for all of your friends and family to hear; it is essentially the moment that you are committing yourselves to one another, and expressing to your significant other why you’ve decided to choose them as your person, day-in, day-out, for the rest of your lives!

Writing your wedding vows can be a seriously intimidating task, which is probably the reason I’ve encountered countless people sitting down to tackle the task on the morning of the wedding (if this was/is you, just know that you’re not alone!) which I personally don’t think is actually a terrible idea (I’ll touch more on this further down). HOWEVER, I would say that a lot of people spend more time on procrastinating and stressing over what to write, than it actually takes to write them – you just gotta get started!

Queenstown Elopement at Lake Erskine

Here are some helpful tips, that helped me personally when writing my own wedding vows!

BLOCK A DAY OUT OF YOUR CALENDAR

Don’t think of it as a day specifically to write your wedding vows. No one works well under pressure! Instead, think of it as a day of “self-love”, as you are essentially going to take yourself out on a date. Yep, that’s right, a solo day dedicated to you!

Go out in to nature, or somewhere where you feel right at home (don’t forget your pad and pen) – the local beach, a park, shopping centre, your favourite rainforest walk – anywhere that is going to make you feel good in your soul bones (for me, it was a beautiful waterfall in the Gold Coast Hinterland that is only a short 2km return hike from the carpark and safe enough to do on your own). Sit down for a few minutes, taking everything in and getting yourself “in tune”, and when you finally feel relaxed, just start writing!

I find when you’re out in nature (or at least away from your every day stressors), when you give your mind a chance to clear and your soul feels at peace, the words just flow!

IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE FORMAL IN ITS STRUCTURE

You can fix all of that later. For now, you just start writing whatever comes to mind when you think about your partner. Think about things like what you love about them, remember beautiful experiences you’ve shared together, the moment you knew you loved each other, what/how you see your future together, what makes you most proud of your partner, etc etc. You don’t have to separate it all in to headings, just put your thoughts and attention to these subjects and write whatever comes to mind. Once I started writing, it just started flowing so quickly. Before I knew it, I ended up writing about six pages so quickly my hand could barely keep up with with how fast my thoughts were flowing!

THINK OF IT AS A LOVE LETTER TO YOUR LOVER

If the traditional templates of “When we first met…” or “I promise to always…” don’t work for you, that’s okay (of course, if they help you get started, and you want to add all of your promises, that’s okay too!). Try and think of it as a love letter. What do you want to say to them? What does marriage mean to you? What commitments are you willing to do for/with them? What are some ways they make you feel, that perhaps you haven’t shared with them before? What do they really mean to you? Lay it all out on the line!

TRY NOT TO GET CAUGHT UP IN WHAT YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO WRITE

Stop googling what to write. Stop Pinteresting. In fact, stop reading this right now – okay you can finish reading this blog post, but then turn the computer off, or put the device down. There is honestly no right or wrong in writing your vows, it doesn’t have to sound formal (you can write it exactly as you would say it!), it doesn’t have to be in any set structure, and it doesn’t have to be “x” amount of minutes or words.

The more we get caught up in what others are doing, or the “right” way of doing things – the more pressure we put on ourselves to “get it right”. Naturally, when we start to feel overwhelmed, we procrastinate or distract ourselves with something else.

So, forget all of those blog posts, forget everything I’ve written here, and just write from the heart! When your mind isn’t cluttered with “what you’re supposed to write” and you allow your thoughts to flow freely, you are able to come up with words and sentences that feel completely authentic to you and your relationship – so it doesn’t feel like you’ve just taken a template from google and *inserted name here*.

UNPOPULAR OPINION: WRITE IT THE DAY OF THE WEDDING

Now I know that sentence is going to cause some people an instant anxiety attack, but hear me out! We often hear about a Bride or a Groom slinking off to grab five minutes by themselves the morning of the wedding day, to finally write their vows (much to their partners frustration!) that they have been putting off for months! And you know what? It get’s done, and the world doesn’t implode! As evidenced by my own wedding when I was surprised to hear my husbands beautiful vows that he wrote literally ten minutes before our ceremony!

Akin to the way I described how the words “just flow” when you’re out in nature, it’s a similar energy on the wedding day. You usually spend the morning in quiet reflection on your relationship and how much you love your partner and cannot wait to get to the isle – that you’re usually in a similar state of mind that allows thoughts to flow freely, allowing you easily put words to paper. That, and the added pressure of OKAY YOU ACTUALLY GOTTA GET THIS SH*T DONE NOW!

JUST BE YOURSELF!

Honestly, don’t stress over it too much. Your partner is already planning on marrying YOU! Regardless of what’s in your vows, and regardless if they’re twenty seconds, or twenty minutes long!

Although it can feel like a huge, daunting task, the biggest step is actually starting.

So go on, get to it!

Where will you be taking yourself for your solo “self-love” date??