Between taste-testing every cake flavor possible and slipping into white dress after white dress, it's easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of planning your wedding. Unfortunately, there can be one pesky thing standing in the way of your happily-ever-after: post-wedding blues. "There's so much anticipation and excitement leading up to the wedding that once it's over, it can feel like you've hit a brick wall emotionally," says Jane Greer, Ph.D., New York-based marriage and sex therapist and author of What About Me? Stop Selfishness From Ruining Your Relationship. But don't worry, here's how to make sure you love life after the wedding.
1. Take on a New Project
When you no longer have seating charts to arrange or bridesmaids to corral, you may be left with a ton of extra energy and time. Use it all up with new projects that give you something to get excited about. "These plans will keep you interested in life," says Greer. Don't feel like you need to take on more than you can handle—you did just wrap up planning a wedding, after all! As long as this new undertaking make you excited, you're golden.
One woman used this very tactic to bring back some of her verve. "I got married in October 2015. We had a fun-filled four-day event that was totally magical," says Jamie C. "When it was over, I was so depressed that I couldn't do much of anything. I cried on and off that first day." Ultimately, she came up with a plan. "We had just moved into a new place, so I threw myself into decorating it," she says. The takeaway: busying yourself with something enjoyable can make you feel more like yourself.
2. Focus on the Actual Marriage
Your wedding is a celebration of the commitment you and your partner have made to spend forever together. "After the wedding, you can finally enjoy all the little things, like using 'Mr.' and 'Mrs.'" says Greer. Instead of seeing your wedding day as the end of something amazing, think of it as the start of one of the most exciting journeys you will ever embark upon. "Think about your shared goals as a couple, or start working on a bucket list if you haven't," says Greer. "That will help you embrace your new life with your partner."
3. Look Back on the Day
Sometimes what you need is a concrete reminder that, yes, your wedding was incredible, thank you very much. "My husband and I had a destination wedding in Mexico in July 2015," says Robyn L. "Since we were on such a high for several days, it felt like the rug was pulled out from under us when it was over. For weeks, we both kept saying, 'I miss our wedding.'" They've turned to reminiscing to make it through those moments. "Getting our professional pictures back helped a lot, as did looking at all the pictures our guests posted on Facebook," she says.
4. Two Words: Date Night
Plan dates every month or so to revel in your shiny new status as a married duo. "Doing special things together actualizes your sense of being a couple," says Greer. "It helps reinforce that you're starting a new journey together." Whether you get decked out for a fancy night on the town or cook a delicious dinner at home, it'll give you something to look forward to and bring you closer together. Talk about a win-win!