Think back to when you were a child. Did you grow up imagining that your wedding day would be the one day where the world revolved around you? What girl didn’t spend time imagining a Cinderella ball with her dream wedding dress and her Prince Charming?

If you’ve started planning your wedding already, you’ve probably already realized what happens to people during this time. Most brides allow too many “cooks in the kitchen,” and suddenly they realize it’s someone else’s dream coming true instead of theirs.

It’s not your fault. Planning a wedding (even if you have the help of a professional wedding planner) is a daunting task. There are so many moving pieces, so many details, so many people’s preferences and personalities to consider.

A bride knows that she can’t do it all herself and keep her sanity. Have you reached the point where that’s a very clear reality for you? We’ve all been there.

You definitely want to make sure the people who are helping you hear you loud and clear. You don’t want to get lost in the chaos! Maybe it’s a wedding planner talking you out of every decision you had planned for the last 15 years since you were a teenager. Or it might be your own mom – shaking her head and frowning or offering her dream wedding ideas instead of listening to yours.

It can take all of the excitement out of planning your wedding day when people you’re close to or working with disapprove of your plans. Remember to lead with strength when a frenzy of opinions bombard.

If you wind up with a professional who isn’t allowing you to express your creative dreams, you may need to have a heart to heart with her and let her know that you appreciate the expertise she brings to the table, but you know what you want on your wedding day and you just need her help carrying it out. She won’t want to lose a client – so when you state it flatly, with a smile on your face – she should step in line. If she doesn’t, you may have to find another professional to work with.

What often happens is that family members or friends become overbearing in planning your wedding day, and you don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. Or what if speaking up leads to an argument when this is supposed to be the happiest time of your life!?

Here are some sample words that will help when dealing with tricky family members: “(Name), can we talk a minute? You know I respect and value your opinion more than anything in the world. But ever since I was a kid, I’ve had this idea in my head of how exciting it would be to plan my wedding day. I know you’re probably able to spot all of the errors I’m making, so I know it’s frustrating for you when I go my own direction, but I really need your support so we can make memories through this process without arguing over the details.”

This person should realize she’s controlling too much of your planning process, but if she doesn’t, simply smile at her and say, “Well don’t be mad if do this my own way!” Guess what you’ll do next? Go on about your business getting everything ready for your wedding day the way YOU wanted it. If she is still not happy during the planning process, just smile and say, “I appreciate your advice, but I’m going to go with my idea.”

Some people just love to argue. If you encounter someone who wants to hijack your wedding day plans, then you may need to take some space from that person as much as possible while you carry out your dreams. Yes, it’s heart-wrenching, but this is your wedding day – not theirs. Chances are, they will come around before the big day! Treat yourself right and enjoy picking out all the details that bring you joy!

But remember, you are planning ONE day. After your wedding day, you will still have family and friends, and you will have a marriage to focus on as well. So be sure you’re investing in all the right things and keeping your loved ones close.