Once you make your way down from the cloud you landed on after your partner proposed, you might think the next step is to dive straight into planning mode. While there's much to do when it comes to planning the big day, your job as a newly-engaged guy or gal is to press pause and enjoy this special time in your life. That's right, we're giving you permission to hold off the planning process for at least a few weeks (or months) so you can relish in this once-in-a-lifetime experience. Desperate for some kind of to-do list? Start with these six that let you enjoy, envision, and savor being engaged.
The proposal was probably one of the most exciting moments of your life to date, so why rush it away? Instead, you should celebrate—for as long as you feel is appropriate. "Too often nowadays the priority is to share the experience with the world, but just make sure you're really taking time to experience it for yourself," says Alison Laesser-Keck, event planner and designer at Alison & Bryan. Savor this magical time that only the two of you are involved in before you start spreading the news on social media.
Tell your closest family and friends.
Of course, as soon as that ring slides on your finger, you're dying to tell those closest to you—and there's no reason you shouldn't! "This conversation, ideally had via a phone call or in person, will make a bigger impact on your loved ones than you may know," explains Lindsey Sachs, a wedding planner and owner of COLLECTIVE/by Sachs in Boulder, Colorado, and Minneapolis. "Your connections with close friends and family not only help you reconnect during this joyous milestone, but will also set the tone for your wedding." Once your besties and your close family are in the know, go ahead and share your exciting news with your larger community of friends and co-workers via social media.
Get your ring resized and insured.
Chances are, this is the most prized and pricey piece of jewelry you now own. You want it to fit the right way and make sure that it's insured in the event it's lost, stolen, or something else happens to it. "Your engagement ring has a profound sentimental value that can't be replaced, but if it's ever lost, having good insurance coverage is a good idea," says Myriam Michel, owner and creative director of M&M Elite Events in Boston, Massachusetts. "Most jewelers where you purchased the ring should offer this in case it needs repairs or if you lose a gem, however, if you have homeowner's or renter's insurance it would be a good idea to add the ring to the policy (most have a jewelry rider)." Remember: You'll need to get the ring appraised by a certified gemologist before adding the ring to the policy.
Prepare yourself mentally.
Before you jump the gun and start Pinteresting like a mad woman, get your head in the right space, as the coming months of wedding planning are likely to be challenging, to say the least. "Marriage is a rite of passage, one of the oldest traditions in human culture, and even the most modern couple will feel the profound shift in their status from single to married," says Larissa Banting, President of Weddings Costa Rica and founder of The Lazy Bride. "Weddings also have an uncanny way of stirring up emotions in family and friends—i.e. the mom who subconsciously is resentful of her baby growing up or being replaced in her son's life by another woman." Buckle up, buttercup, as the ride is about to get bumpy! Preparing yourself for what will likely be an emotional rollercoaster of sorts will help you stay grounded and aware through some of the obstacles that might arise.
Have a conversation about your dream wedding.
No, not just with your mom or the wedding planner, but with your significant other (who half of this day is about, too!). "It's imperative to be honest and incorporate both his and her vision into the wedding," says Slisha Kankariya, founder of Four Mine, an online jewelry retailer specializing in engagement rings. "Do the two of you want a beach wedding, or a rustic celebration in the fall? Traditional vows or nontraditional? Big guest list or small?" Now is the time to whittle down your options and talk them through. This might involve setting aside a week night to browse Pinterest or peruse a bridal magazine for inspiration.
Enjoy being engaged.
It's easy to feel incredibly overwhelmed as the wedding-planning process takes its course. But do try your best to take your eyes away from the keyboard to enjoy this special time in your lives. "Many brides make the mistake of rushing through the engagement, anxious to be married, but being engaged is one of the most exciting times of your life and a time that you can't ever get back," says Jung Lee, founder and co-owner of Fête, an event production company in New York City. "After the proposal, make a point to spend some relaxing, one-on-one time with your partner and enjoy the fact that you're making this commitment to each other.