Let me explain what a Wedding Coach is. Think of a Wedding Coach as an advisor, behavioral specialist, conflict resolution expert, and relationship manager with a strong understanding of goal setting and wedding planning, all wrapped up in a life coach. Additionally, a Wedding Coach is hired for the duration of your wedding plans, until the day you marry. Your Wedding Coach will collaborate with you so that you can stay on track with all wedding-related tasks. However, your Wedding Coach is not a wedding planner. He or she will not partake in planning your wedding, or attend gown fittings, cake tasting, review DJs or bands, or select your reception menu. However, your coach can definitely help you achieve the outcomes you want so that you will be less stressed and actually enjoy planning your wedding.
When coaching brides, my focus is helping to keep them organized, on schedule, and to minimize the stress of planning a wedding. My role is to develop strategies and goals for brides to achieve the ideal outcomes for their wedding day. Likewise, I help brides and, or grooms develop various social and psychological resiliency skills to meet challenges and setbacks that happen during wedding planning stages. For instance, if my bride is having issues with her mother controlling the wedding plans, I help her learn effective communication strategies and emotional intelligence to handle her controlling mother better and take back the power. We also work on creating to-do lists and work towards achieving mini-accomplishments to reduce feeling overwhelmed during the wedding planning process. Brides who take advantage of having a personal coach usually report less stress, greater control and actually enjoy their wedding much more. Coaches, such as myself, serve as an objective support person, sounding board, and an individual that is there solely for the bride (or groom) through the entire wedding planning journey. The amazing thing is that what clients learn though wedding coaching can be used throughout the rest of their lives.
Here are some goals that a bride may want to achieve:
- Maintain her weight until her wedding day
- Learn how to be more sexually or sensuously confident for her wedding night
- Learn how to be more assertive and make decisions with venders, the bridal party, or in-laws, and take charge during the wedding planning stages
- Help with getting organized, and creating strategies to keep the wedding plans and tasks on track
- Deal with situations that do not go as planned (no matter how perfect your wedding is or will be, there are some things that will not go as planned—ask anyone who has ever had a wedding)
I help my brides by using a co-active coaching approach, and through setting SMART goals. The co-active approach was developed by Kimsey-House et al (2011) and is a model that incorporates collaborative efforts between the coach and coachee. SMART is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable/Achievable, Realistic and Timely. As such, solution-focused goals are SMART goals. Using these concepts, my client / bride decides what she wants to work on and how she wants to approach her goals. I am there to support her. Therefore, I work with my clients, through brainstorming, active listening and helping them identify the results they want to achieve, and I encourage them throughout the course of our relationship and the wedding planning process to use their strengths to accomplish what the desire.
Additionally, I believe that every milestone, strength, or newly developed skill and outcome should be celebrated. So we take time to review what was accomplished and celebrate victories, as well as failures. We do this because it reminds the client how hard she has worked and it is a tangible or physical way to show how coaching is working in the client’s life.
So, why should someone hire a Wedding Coach (or life coach for the wedding)? Here are 7 reasons why a coach will help you:
- Reduce stress, build confidence, and maintain your sanity while you plan your wedding
- Get organized/keep organized throughout the wedding planning process
- Brainstorm and collaborate on ideas and strategies to help your wedding run smoothly
- Objectively and clearly talk things through without being judgmental, and help you see things from a different but healthy perspectives
- Achieve wedding goals on time and according to plan
- Maintain control of your wedding plans while allowing you the ability to enjoy the process of planning your wedding
- Develop new organizational, communicative, emotional and behavioral skills that you can use in other areas of your life
I guess a better question is why wouldn’t you hire a coach to work with you during your wedding?