How to Create a Personalized Wedding Ceremony
Weddings are inherently a ritual of union, and some couples may see it as a simple act of celebrating that which already exists. However, for others it is also moment to mark a shift in their relationship and there is a desire to craft the ceremony as an act of conscious-coupling and transformation in their lives, or even in their relationship with their guests.
These questions are designed for you if you feel the ceremony is an important part of your wedding day. Finding the answers to these questions is a creative process, a personal discovery, and a mindful blueprint to making your ritual of union truly personalized. It’s also an exercise in deep listening to your partner, especially if you don’t like what they have to say.
So book a date night, grab a pen and paper (or keyboard!) and start planning your unity ritual!
1. Talk about your memories of past wedding ceremonies, even ones you witnessed as a child. Do you recall any words or traditions that brought you joy? Are there any customs that you’ve romanticized or rituals that you’ve come to expect in a wedding ceremony that if you didn’t have them at your ceremony, it simply would feel like a ‘real wedding’. Maybe there are aspects to the wedding ritual that you haven't enjoyed and you wish to leave out of your ceremony.
2. Imagine that you are eloping and no one else would be there to witness wedding. How would this impact what you would day or do during your ceremony? What would be lost or gained if you did this?
3. If your wedding was a TV/movie character or celebrity, who would it be? This might seem like a silly question, but James Bond and Adam Sandler are two completely different personas. And you might find someone like Ryan Reynolds better suited to guide a style that suits the two of you as a couple. Knowing your style as a united front will ensure that you can pick the readings and tone of the ceremony that best represents the two of you together.
4. What does being married mean to each of you? Discuss why you think or feel that it will have an impact on your lives (personally, socially).
5. What does being married mean to your relationships with each other’s families? Discuss why you think or feel that it will have an impact on their lives (personally, socially).
6. Separately, each of you will write down three aspects that you value in your partner.
Now, write down the three things that you believe they will write down about you. And ask yourself, are these important values that guide my life? Where did I learn these values over the course of my life?
If they are pretty close, these values are a great starting point for statements to make in your vows, speeches, or written into your ceremony.
If they are completely different, even better! What the other person values in you, comes from an internal place of comfort or desire from deep within themselves. Take the time to listen to why that value is important to them and where they learned to appreciate that value. Learning what they value in both you and themselves is a chance for your connection to deepen.
7. Finally - take the information you've gathered from this exercise and determine how you want to use it. You can share it with your Officiant for the ceremony itself, or keep it for your personal vows, or use it during your wedding speech.
Photo Credit: Thomas Weddings