New Year's Resolutions for Couples Planning Their Weddings

Calling all engaged couples! Add these 10 resolutions to your list right away.

If you've recently become engaged, there are a number of "wedding resolutions" you'll want to add to your list of New Year's resolutions – and keep throughout the year!

Photo: Hugh Forte

With the new year officially in full effect, chances are you've already started thinking about your New Year's resolutions. It's likely you'll have the go-to resolutions on your list: start working out, get more sleep, eat better, and so on. But if you've recently become engaged, there are a number of other "wedding resolutions" you'll want to add to your list – and keep.

Take a look at our list of 10 New Year's resolutions every bride and groom should consider for 2024, below:

1. Don't get too stressed about wedding planning.

Don't let wedding planning give you more stress than it needs to in 2023. Once you've spent time enjoying your engagement bliss, it's time to start planning the big day. The concept of becoming a "bridezilla" isn't just seen in movies – if you let wedding planning get the best of you, it can happen in real life.

Alleviate wedding-planning stress by hiring a wedding planner and other wedding professionals you can trust, and take every day one step at a time. Understand that the little details you're stressing over really won't matter on the big day.

2. Design the wedding to fit your personalities.

As you begin perusing wedding magazines, websites, and blogs for inspiring ceremony and reception ideas, you'll likely find a number of desirable themes and decorations. While the latest wedding trends are appealing, it's also important to choose décor elements based on your likes and dislikes as a couple, as opposed to only selecting a style that's en vogue. Besides décor, the selected attire, entertainment, as well as food and drink options should really speak to you as a pair. 

3. Don't be passive aggressive about the guest list.

Especially if your parents are paying for the wedding, they'll likely have a long list of people to invite – and you may not even know them. Instead of having an attitude regarding the prospective guest list, ask your parents questions about why they want to invite a certain person to better understand their reasoning. And if your parents are not pitching in for the festivities, be clear on those people you want to invite and those you'd prefer not be in attendance.

4. Communicate with each other.

Communication is a key element in a marriage, so it's best to start early. During wedding planning, be sure to always involve the other person. Even if your groom doesn't express interest in wedding planning, it's his special day too. Make sure you speak to one another throughout the process to ensure the big day is just as much about you as a couple as it is about throwing a beautiful party for friends and family.

5. Make the registry a priority, and register for the right items.

Even though a wedding registry doesn't seem like the most exciting part of planning your wedding, it is important. Chances are, your guests will want to bestow you with gifts to celebrate your union. Be sure to register early as loved ones will look to your wish list for the wedding, as well as pre-wedding events such as your engagement party and wedding shower. Find wedding registry tips here, and learn the wedding registry rules of etiquette.

New Year's Eve Kiss for Husband & Wife

Photo by Genevieve Nisly Photography; Floral & Event Design by Joe Mineo Creative; From Real Wedding: New Year's Eve Wedding with a Dreamy Winter Wonderland Theme

6. Handle guest issues with grace.

From pre-wedding guest complications to troublesome attendees at the celebration, don't put anything past your family and friends – especially when stress and alcohol is involved. Remember that it's your day, so you should handle situations as you deem fit, but be sure to handle any wedding-guest complications with grace. You're planning this day to celebrate your love with friends and family, so try your best to keep your relationships intact even if trouble strikes.

7. Choose wedding traditions that speak to you as a couple.

From age-old wedding traditions to new popular practices, there are many things "you should do" on your wedding day – but here's a tip: you don't have to do them all! While there are some traditions that couples shouldn't forgo, ask yourself if the tradition at hand fits your personalities and beliefs as a couple or not. If you decide the latter, don't worry about what your family or guests might think. It's your day, so only practice those traditions you deem important.

8. Spend the entire wedding day together.

We've heard countless stories of couples who try so hard to make sure every guest is happy during their celebration that they don't even spend time together as newlyweds. The happiest couples with no regrets about their wedding days are those that stayed by each other's sides throughout the reception. Your wedding day only happens once, so be sure to spend it with the person you're marrying – or schedule time for a few minutes alone to relish your newly married status.

9. Write thank-you notes early!

Once the wedding is over, start writing your thank-you notes right away. While wedding etiquette says notes of graditude should be sent within a year of the wedding date, you should really consider sending them much earlier. Imagine how you've felt as a wedding guest who doesn't receive a thank-you note for months and months – even wondering if the couple received your gift in the first place. Keep loved ones' nerves at ease, and take some time to send notes of thanks early on. Some pairs even choose to thank their loved ones in person or via phone or text, followed by a more formal handwritten thank-you note.

10. Set realistic expectations for your marriage.

With all of the wedding planning leading up to your big day, don't let the reason you're getting married escape you. Take time to set realistic expectations for your marriage and discuss how life will be once you say "I do." Having conversations about your relationship before the big day will allow each of you to understand the other person and set a positive foundation for your new life together. 

For more ideas, view the pros and cons of having a New Year's Eve wedding, discover ideas for a celebration on this holiday, and be inspired by hundreds of real weddings here

Opening photo by Hugh Forte; Planning & Design by Tessa Lyn Events; From Real Wedding: Gorgeous Alfresco Wedding with Stunning Mountain Views in Malibu