Engagements are a major milestone meant to be celebrated. But they are often overcome with feelings of stress and tension when wedding planning begins. “The Bachelor’s” Ben Higgins is no stranger to stress and tension considering his love life was aired to millions of viewers. So, when we had the chance to chat with him, we asked for his advice on how to enjoy an engagement – with or without a couple million viewers!
- Continue Dating
Always date. Before engagement, after engagement, after marriage. The whole time. But especially during engagement. It will help distract you from those times when planning just feels like it is too much and it will continue to strengthen your relationship as you learn new things about each other.
“I think it gives you more time just to date…” said Ben about engagements. “Dating is great and it's fun, now you know each other feel, you know that you're making a commitment to each other that is a lifelong commitment and it's time to step it up a bit.”
- Plan Your Life, Not Just Your Wedding
Planning a wedding is fun and all, but after the wedding you’re left with a marriage a new partner to share life with. So while you are wedding planning, make sure you are life planning, too. Talk about all the things you two will encounter in your future. Where you see yourselves, what your dreams are, how many children you want and also the fun things like what color the bridesmaids will wear and what signature cocktail should you serve!
“I don't want to say give away and give up things that you had before because I don't think marriage is about that, I actually think, instead, you start adding to life and you start expanding what is going to look like to be partners and teammates and loves for each other and you can do that during engagement in incredible ways,” explained Ben. “And one of the first big decisions you're going to make is how you're going to get married and when. So be there for each other during that.”
- Enjoy the Moment
Soak it all in. Take a minute to notice your finger sparkler. Take a minute to realize if the flowers don’t look perfect, it will all still end up okay. Enjoy the fact that you get to celebrate your love and the person you’ve found that you want to spend forever with. And that the forever is just getting started.
- Stay on the Same Team
Sometimes it can get heated if you really want a band, but your fiancée thinks it’s way too expensive compared to a DJ. Or you can’t agree on a season for your wedding. Take a step back and remember this is your person. There are always going to be things you disagree on in life and this is one of them. Find a middle ground and a way to compromise. Especially during wedding planning when the stress is already high.
“I think my advice for any engaged couple would be, during this time though to start those steps to show each other just how much of a teammate you are, a partner you are,” Ben said.
- Remember Why
Always, always, always remember you chose to spend your life with this person for a reason. Spending quality time (which is why dating during your engagement is important) with your partner will help keep you in check of what it is that brought you to this person in the first place. And if you’re like Ben, having a pretty sweet enhancement at your wedding will help keep you happy!
“Marrying Jessica is a big part of that wedding and I am very excited about that. I'm most excited to marry her,” Ben said. “But outside of that, the smaller details, Jessica's promised me that I can have a bourbon and tequila bar. So, I'm pretty pumped about that.”
Photo credit: Cameron Budove Photography