The thought of popping the question makes most people nervous; it is after all one of the biggest events you will experience in your adult life. Everyone wants their grand gesture to be executed smoothly and romantically, in reality nerves are likely to creep in at some stage, follow our ten tips for calming nerves and proposing with finesse.
1. Be Confident
Having confidence in your plan will help tremendously to calm your nerves. Try to avoid making the proposal too complicated, if your proposal relies on intricate details such as your partner being in exactly the right spot at exactly the right time, this will add extra stress and is more likely to not go to plan. Keep it simple, yet effective.
2. Talk about it
Firstly, you are likely to have had conversations with your partner about life changing events such as marriage and children. Make sure this is something you both want and that you share the same opinions when it comes to important decisions such as raising a family.
Don’t propose too early in your relationship – It’s very easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of a romance when you fall in love with someone, essentially this is the honeymoon effect. So do not rush things until you’re 100% sure this is in both of your best interests and what you want.
The surprise should be how you propose, not that you have proposed.
Secondly, once you have made the decision to propose confide in someone you trust to talk over the plans, getting a trusted opinion and approval that your plan is great will do wonders for your confidence and nerves.
For instance talk to her parents, it’s wise to let them know of your plans regardless but some women still consider it a tradition for you to ask their parents for their “daughter’s hand in marriage”, especially if she puts a lot of value on traditions and family, then asking for her father’s permission is an absolute must.
3. Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine
As tempting as it may be to reach for the coffee or alcohol, try to avoid the temptation, as both can alter your mood and composure. With heightened anxiety and adrenaline running through your body alcohol may affect you differently and may increase your anxiety levels.
Practising meditation (such as Mindfullness mediation) during the planning stages of your proposal is a great way to keep your nerves and panic attacks under control.
Mindfulness meditation originated from Buddhist thought, it is where moment to moment awareness is cultivated, combining relaxation with concentration. Added benefits include decreased obsessive fixations, increased relaxation and all-round self-awareness.
Leading mindfulness meditation exponent and psychotherapist Adam Szmerling explains the applications of this technique to a proposal situation, “Proposing provokes anxiety because of an intense desire for an outcome. Mindfulness meditation aims not to obliterate desire but to bring attention into the ‘here and now’ through moment to moment awareness without judgement, thereby reducing the fixation on a future outcome. Therefore anxiety about the present moment doesn’t exist. So Mindful Meditation proposes another proposition of living in the present moment, while meditating and then mindfully leading to another proposal you wish to engage in”
5. Speak From Your Heart
There are likely to be sentimental memories you will want to include in your proposal and you will say the words “will you marry me?”, however, try to avoid writing a speech that you plan to memorise; this adds extra pressure and you are likely to forget it. Instead speak from the heart.
Although you should speak from the heart, there will be certain things you want to say and do in your proposal, the more you practice the easier it will be to say when you propose, but make sure to consider the following:
Don’t hide the engagement ring in food – This has been a go to proposal tactic in many films and tv shows, which alone won’t win you any points in creativity, and in the worst case scenario your romantic proposal could end with a trip to A+E or the dentist!
Don’t propose spontaneously or on a whim – This is a huge moment in her life, she will be remembering it forever. So don’t rush into things as it could cheapen the moment and appear to be uncaring.
Do go down on bended knee – This is a time honoured tradition in itself not to mention charming and romantic, also adds seriousness and lovingness to the proposal
If you are unsure of how to propose and need some inspiration then The Proposers can work with you to create a proposal which is completely tailored to your relationship and something your girlfriend will remember forever.
7. Keep it intimate
Try to avoid making it a public event, nothing will add extra pressure and build nerves like an audience. You may want to plan for friends and family to join you afterwards, but for the proposal keep it just the two of you especially if she is a shy person as some brides like to have the magical moment just between the two of you. However if she is flashy and flamboyant then a big elaborate proposal could be exactly what she wants.
But avoid the following:
Don’t propose at a sports game – It’s impersonal and noisy but this does depend on the person, for instance if she’s a huge football fan she could love this idea
Don’t do it in front of her family – This puts added levels of stress onto both of you, which is something neither of you need when you’re effectively altering the status of your relationship.
8. Propose with a Ring
Have an engagement ring when you propose, it will make the proposal seem more meaningful and romantic and will show your partner you have put some thought into your decision. If you know your partner wants to choose their own engagement ring, think about using something in place of a ring, possibly a temporary ring, a sentimental keepsake or another piece of jewellery.
Fortunately Vashi has a wide range of rings to suit any proposal and to make it that little more special you could use the ring creator to make a unique piece that she will love.
9. Plan the Celebrations
With so much emphasis being placed on the proposal itself, it is easy to forget to plan a celebration after the proposal. The proposal is likely to be over as quick as it begun, the celebrations will prolong the experience and gives you the opportunity to share the news with friends and family.
With modern technology we are never without cameras on our mobile phones or tablets, be sure to take plenty of photos and record videos to capture the memories.
10. Its okay to be nervous
You are only human, you will be nervous whether you show it or not, remember even if you stumble on your words or fumble with the ring, your partner will find this endearing. Your nerves will demonstrate how important this is to you.