It’s time to write your vows! Now what? You’re staring at a blank page, so where do you start? You know you’re head over heels for your partner, but how do you want to say that, let alone say that in front of your friends and family?
If you’re stumped, you’ve come to the right place! Here are nine tips to guide you in writing vows that will wow your audience and make your ceremony extra special.
Give yourself time
We’ve all had teachers tell us that an assignment can’t be done the night before, and we’ve all found a way to do that successfully. Let’s be clear: This is not an assignment you can accomplish well the night before! Give yourself plenty of time to think through your thoughts and feelings. These are the promises you’re making to your partner for the rest of your life; this isn’t something you want to do last-minute. Emotions and nerves run high as the day gets closer, so start early and take your time.
Spread out your writing sessions
Start thinking about what you want to express and jot down your thoughts in moments you feel lots of love for your partner. Then, when you sit down, this will help you easily write your heart out. It’s much simpler to keep your vows top-of-mind and write out the things you feel in those moments than tackle the whole task in one sitting. Spreading out your writing sessions makes for solid, sustainable vows.
Be careful what you share
It’s easy to get wrapped up in the gushy love you feel for one another, but be careful how much you share! When you’re standing in front of your loved ones, you still want to be able to sit around the table at Thanksgiving and look everyone in the eye. So keep the vows PG, and all will go perfectly.
Make it your own
Your vows are your testament to your partner, so it’s important they feel like your own — because they are! Share stories of your time together, including the ups, downs, highs, and lows, because those details are what make your relationship unique. You don’t need to write a novel or become a comedian; just make them yours!
Remember the purpose
A vow is a promise you’re making to your person, so go a bit deeper than “I love you.” What do you promise to do or strive for during your marriage? Dig into what makes your relationship special and speak to hold those extraordinary things close to your heart and marriage.
It’s okay not to encapsulate the entirety of your relationship in your vows. Actually, it’s encouraged that you don’t. So be careful not to start with “in the beginning” only to work your way through the entire timeline of your relationship! If you’d like, hit the highlights and a low or two, but more importantly, focus on the future and your forever together!
Talk it over with your partner
You don’t have to spill the beans just yet, but it helps to discuss a format or style with your partner. The last thing you want is to have different purposes for your vows! So make them yours, but make them yours together. It’s essential to be on the same page, even when you’re writing on different pages!
Practice, practice, practice
It sounds silly, but it’s wise to read your vows aloud a few times before your big day. You’d be surprised what makes sense in your brain but might trip you up when you read it in front of an audience. So stand in the mirror, read your vows smoothly and slowly a few times, and feel confident on your big day.
Read examples or ask for help
You’re not the first person to cross this bridge, so don’t let yourself feel alone! There are lots of examples and templates online to get you started. If you don’t like anything you find, don’t hesitate to ask your officiant or minister. They’ve been around the block and might have a trick or two up their sleeve.
It’s okay to feel overwhelmed, but don’t fret! These tips can help you accomplish the perfect vows for your big day. You aren’t reinventing the wheel, so take a deep breath and speak from your heart. Your perfect vows for your loved ones are in there!