Contributed by Mona Freund of Siege Media
Original post from Kitchen Cabinet Kings
We all know that planning a wedding can be one of the most overwhelming and stressful experiences of your relationship to date. If you and your partner have different ideas of what the big day should look like, even the most experienced wedding planner may struggle to please both of you.
When you can’t decide on the perfect location, the best wine, or are stuck between hiring a DJ or a band, you’ll have to compromise to move forward. A true compromise is an artform and will leave both parties with a solution they’re content with. Here is a step-by-step guide on finding a compromise with your partner:
Step 1: Make your case and listen
You’ve been dreaming of your wedding day ever since you were a little child? Tell your partner why this day is so important to you and how you’re picturing it. Then listen to their point of view and be sure not to interrupt each other. This conversation will be the foundation of your compromise so take your time and be respectful of each other’s opinions and ideas.
Step 2: Ask questions
Try to ask as many open-ended questions as you can to gain a deeper understanding of your partner’s standpoint. Here are a few examples that you can use as guidelines:
Why is it important to you to invite so many people?
How do you feel about a food truck instead of a buffet?
What do you think a band can deliver that a DJ can’t?
Why do you feel so strongly about staying on budget?
Again, be respectful when you ask these questions and don’t judge your partner’s responses. It’s all about opening up the conversation and gaining new perspectives.
Step 3: Define your negotiables and non-negotiables
Now that you’ve gotten a better view of your partner’s ideas and thoughts, take some time to write down your negotiables and non-negotiables (or must-haves). Don’t rush this step. If it takes you a full week to cover all the things you want to list, then so be it. This will ensure that you feel confident with your choices.
Step 4: Share your lists
Sit down together and compare your lists. You may find that there are some things in your negotiable list that your partner feels a lot stronger about and vice versa. This will help you find common ground and hopefully get you closer to an agreement or compromise.
Step 5: Come up with new ideas
Nobody expects you to magically agree on everything at this point. Highlight the items on your lists that you still disagree about and can’t seem to find common ground with. Now take some time to write down five or 10 alternatives. This exercise will allow you to identify new solutions that you can both agree on!
Step 6: Compromise or negotiate a trade
You’ve put a lot of effort and thought into finding a compromise but there may still be a few items you disagree on. So if you can’t come to a true compromise (meaning you’re both happy with the solution), negotiate a trade! For example, if partner A feels strongly about having a signature cocktail and partner B just can’t imagine a wedding without a band, give each party what they want and call it a tie!
You can download the worksheets below and use them to work through your wedding planning dilemmas. They should help you find common ground and make this process a little easier on everyone involved.
Remember that at the end of the day, it’s all about celebrating your love in front of your family and friends and throwing a party you’ll never forget. Whatever you compromise on will make you a stronger couple and get you one step closer to planning the best day of your life.