Wedding planning is often a dream job for those who love all things romance and fairytales. However, what many don't realize is that it's also one of the most stressful jobs in the world, particularly during peak season. And with tight deadlines and endless tasks on your to-do lists, wedding planners often find themselves feeling burnt out and overwhelmed. In this article, we are going to dive into WHY it’s so important that wedding planners need to take time off during peak season. From scheduling breaks and delegating tasks to managing client expectations and prioritizing self-care, we'll explore the strategies that planners can implement to avoid burnout and maintain a healthy work-life balance even during wedding season.
The Importance of Scheduling Breaks
As a seasoned wedding planner for over a decade, I can't stress enough the importance of taking breaks during wedding season. Planning weddings is a demanding job that requires a great deal of creativity, attention to detail, and patience. Without proper rest and time off, it's easy to become overwhelmed and burnt out. That's why when I was a wedding planner, I made a point to schedule breaks throughout the season.
Whether it's blacking out a weekend or two or taking a month long hiatus where you don’t take book any weddings, taking time to recharge your batteries will allow you to come back to work refreshed and ready to tackle the next challenge. Plus, it ensures that you are able to provide the best possible service to your clients, without feeling like you’re running on empty. Trust me, taking care of yourself is just as important as taking care of your clients.
Delegating Tasks to Your Team
One of the most effective strategies for managing “wedding season stress” is to delegate tasks to your team. As a wedding planner, it's easy to fall into the trap of believing that you need to do everything yourself to ensure that it's done right. I’ve been there! However, this mentality can quickly lead to burnout and overwhelm. I know, I’ve done it.
Delegating tasks not only helps to ease your workload but also empowers your team to take ownership of their work and develop their skills. Start by identifying the tasks that can be delegated to other members of your team (and do this now – before wedding season REALLY kicks into gear and you can’t recover). This could include tasks such as managing vendor relationships, coordinating with the venue, or even managing the guest list.
When delegating tasks, it's important to give your team members clear instructions and set expectations for deadlines and quality standards. Be sure to check in regularly with your team to monitor progress and provide feedback – but don’t be a bottleneck. Empower your team to make decisions and even mistakes (gasp!) so that ultimately you can grow a wedding business that doesn’t lead to burnout for you.
Growing Your Team
Maybe you were just reading that thinking – sounds good Candice, but I don’t have a team.
Hitting you with some real talk here – As a wedding planner, you can't do everything alone, and you need a reliable team to help you carry out your plans successfully. When it comes to growing your team or hiring additional support, look for people who share your vision, work ethic, and level of commitment. Skills can be taught later.
Whether you're hiring freelancers, interns, or full-time employees, make sure you take the time to train them and set clear expectations. Communicate your goals and priorities, and establish a system for regular feedback and performance evaluations (I recommend Asana to keep everything organized!).
The sooner you build a team, the closer you get to that ultimate goal of freedom that likely led you to entrepreneurship in the first place. Stop waiting!
Managing Client Expectations
Switching gears here, when it comes to avoiding burnout, at the same time, you need to manage your client's expectations and ensure that you have the resources to deliver what you promise. Before taking on new clients, ask yourself if you have the bandwidth to handle their demands and still deliver high-quality work. Be transparent about your availability, fees, and timeline, and make sure you have a clear understanding of their expectations and preferences.
Oh yeah – and you should probably raise your prices right now too.
By building realistic timelines and delivering on your promises throughout the planning process, you can build trust with your clients and establish a reputation as a reliable and trusted wedding planner which will ultimately lead to less micro-managing from your clients (which let’s be honest – is often one of the most stressful parts of the job!). It's understandable that clients want the perfect wedding, and as a wedding planner, you want to deliver just that. You just don’t want to email them every three days to reassure them that you are going to get it done. Right?
You Need to Say No More Often
If I know you, you likely have a little people-pleasing inside of you.
As a wedding planner, your top priority is creating an unforgettable and seamless experience for your clients. It's no surprise that you are a natural people pleaser with a gift for getting things done. However, also unsurprisingly, saying ‘yes' to every request can take a toll on your mental and emotional well-being, leading to burnout. You guys – it's crucial to set healthy boundaries and learn to say ‘no' more often. Remember, saying no doesn't mean you're a bad planner or letting your clients down—it means you're taking care of yourself and ensuring you can continue to provide exceptional service.
One of my favorite sayings is “Your clients are entitled to ask, they just aren’t entitled to get what they ask for”. So the next time they need an evening meeting or are trying to scope creep, remember that it’s okay to say no!
As a wedding planner, you're constantly juggling multiple tasks and clients, which can take a toll on your mental and physical health. It's important to prioritize self-care during peak season (and every season) to avoid burnout.
Listen, I know that your top priority is always your clients and their wedding day. However, while juggling vendors, timelines, and budgets, it's so easy to forget about taking care of yourself. It's important to recognize that self-care isn't a luxury; it's a necessity, especially during the wedding season. You are the backbone of the wedding planning process, and taking care of yourself will allow you to remain focused, creative, and energized. Whether it's scheduling in some extra exercise, setting aside time for a hobby or something that brings you joy, or simply taking a few deep breaths, remember that investing in your well-being will only enhance your ability to create magic for your customers.
When you prioritize self-care, you're able to show up as your best self for your clients. By setting boundaries and taking breaks, you'll be able to provide better service and deliver better outcomes.Trust me – your couples will appreciate a planner who is calm, collected, and able to handle any situation that arises.
Ready to avoid burnout this wedding season?
In case I caught you skimming – here’s a quick recap:
- Schedule Breaks throughout the season
- Delegate tasks to your team
- GROW your team
- Manage client expectations upfront
- Say NO more often
- Prioritize Self Care
One of my favorite sayings is “You don’t need to earn your rest”. I want you to read that again.
With the above advice, I hope that you feel like you have all of the tools necessary to have a successful wedding season without burning out. Thinking ahead and understanding your own needs is key for making sure that you don't get too stressed out during what I’m sure is about to be a busy period.
Let me be frank here – I also understand how hard it is to avoid burnout in the wedding industry. There's a lot of pressure on wedding planners, and it can be difficult to manage everything while still enjoying the process. If you are looking for a community of like-minded women who get it, be sure to get on the waitlist for The Planner's Playbook – a monthly membership that offers guidance and advice specifically tailored towards event professionals like yourself. Taking control of your career will be the best decision you’ve ever made! I would love to see you inside.
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