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Conscious Bride's Wedding Planner Hardcover – Bargain Price, November, 2003

20 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews Review

Bridal Counselor Sheryl Paul offers a thoughtful alternative to "bridezilla," the perfectionist bride who acts as if a flawless pricey wedding will ensure a lasting marriage. Instead, Paul uses a workbook format to invite each woman to become "a conscious bride"--one whose pre-nuptial preparations include both emotional and practical to-do lists. The key is working through the ambivalent feelings that surround each tangible task. And here's the payoff: "Working through uncomfortable feelings while planning a wedding is an opening to joy—-an opportunity to be fully present." Each chapter pairs a practical task, such as choosing a location, creating a budget or writing wedding vows, with an emotional one. For example, in one brilliant section, the practicality of making a guest list is paired with the emotional homework of grieving for lost loves and tackling the need to please. Paul's approach creates a fascinating hybrid of anthropology (using a theory of rites of passage) and depth psychology (acknowledging the shadow side of every wedding.) She then packages these insights with a kicking set of charts and checklists. Though targeted for brides, it is not for women only. Powerful exercises urge couples to align every decision to reflect their identity as a couple. Some brides may object to a walk on the dark side of their wedding plans. But in Paul's capable hands, counsel about fear and loss, florists and white satin dresses co-exist without sounding like Dr. Phil meets the former Martha Stewart. Her advice is fresh, highly practical and optimistic. --Barbara Mackoff


"If there is one book that will help women with a smooth wedding transition, this is it."

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 252 pages
  • Publisher: New Harbinger Publications (November 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1572243457
  • ASIN: B000HWY5IY
  • Product Dimensions: 11.3 x 8.8 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #885,548 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I pioneered the field of bridal counseling in 1998. I have since counseled thousands of people worldwide through my private practice, my bestselling books, "The Conscious Bride" and "The Conscious Bride's Wedding Planner," and my websites, and I'm regarded as the international expert on the wedding transition and have appeared several times on "The Oprah Winfrey Show", as well as on "Good Morning America" and other top television, radio, and newspapers around the globe. I live in Boulder, CO with my husband and two young sons.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 36 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 3, 2004
Format: Hardcover
My fiancé and I have been together for nearly eight years. In that time, we've attended and been in more weddings than we can count. While we've loved being part of our friends' celebrations, we've also seen stressed-out grooms and tearful brides, and have heard plenty of, "Our families are making us crazy. This doesn't even seem like our wedding. We should have eloped!" So when we recently decided to marry, that's exactly what we wanted to do.
We are now planning to marry abroad in a tiny, informal civil ceremony, and therefore hardly needed a great big "white wedding" type of planner. But although our ceremony will be small and informal, we want it 1) to go smoothly, and 2) (and most importantly) be meaningful. So, like most brides, I started doing some research. I looked through many wedding planners for tips and suggestions on how to be organized and how to keep the whole process meaningful. Obviously, weddings planners by definition are meant to help you plan, stay on track, be organized, etc., but I didn't get much real help on keeping it meaningful until I got to The Conscious Bride's Wedding Planner.
Now, this book covers many practical topics (in fact, many more than my fiancé and I needed for our plans), but I found it very valuable for a different reason: it focused on so much MORE than wedding planning tasks. The Conscious Bride's Wedding Planner helps guide you through not only the planning, but also your personal and emotional journey. While I won't be wearing a big poofy white dress or having 200 guests in a church wedding, I'm still on a personal and emotional journey toward marriage--and The Conscious Bride's Wedding Planner has helped me along that journey.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 22, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Sheryl's book is thoughtful and comprehensive. It allows a bride to consider everything in preparation for her wedding; the flowers, the guests, and most importantly, her emotions. The book gives exercises for the bride and her future beloved to use to explore how best to make a wedding that reflects them. As a minister, I will reccomend this wedding planner to all of the couples who work with me as a way to feel truly ready when the day comes to walk down the aisle. I give this book 5 stars!!
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Great Northern on December 12, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I loved this book- it is great at helping you remain centered throughout the process of getting engaged and then married. It focuses on the emotional side of the process and has many excerises to work through, relating many of the aspects of the planing process to emotional events in your life, such as letting go of past relationships and lost loved ones, and asserting yourself (in creating and limiting your guest list). While it does have sections for everything from flowers and food to dress and location, it might not be the definitive planner in terms of planning a really traditional, detail-oriented wedding. However, if what you are looking for is a companion to guide you through the wedding planning process and keep you sane and grounded, this is really an excellent choice. Lots of excercises, worksheets and more, and a companion website- highly recommended!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca B. Smith on May 31, 2006
Format: Hardcover
If you already have Sheryl Paul's The Conscious Bride (a must-have, really), this planner may be a bit redundant. While the information is very helpful, it's basically the same information as The Conscious Bride, and it doesn't provide as many of the organizing resources as other planners. Most brides would do well with either the original book or this planner, but both may be emotional overkill.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By S. Bovington on July 25, 2006
Format: Hardcover
The Conscious Bride wedding planner is an insightful, organized and invaluable resource for any bride. It covers the deeper areas of preparation for your wedding day with just the right touch. It helped me clarify my intention for marriage and create just the right feeling and look for my wedding that was uniquely my own. I would have never been so prepared or calm or joyful without having worked through this planner.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Dew Drop on November 30, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I read this book while my husband and I were planning our wedding. I like how Sheryl Paul balances the logistics of planning a wedding with the emotional work of building the foundation for a marriage. When we were planning our wedding, it was so easy to get caught up in the external details of the event. We found it helpful to have a reminder to focus on the emotional aspects of celebrating a wedding. I found the exercises and recommendations easy to follow and implement.

Some of my favorite recommendations from this book:

* Writing a letter to our best friends and parents about our feelings about our upcoming marriage. We made sure to set aside time before the wedding to talk to these people.
* Practicing feeling gratitude towards my (then) fiance.
* Practicing letting go of feelings of perfection.
* Exercises to practice mindfulness during our ceremony. This was vital. During our ceremony I felt centered, grateful, passionately in love and aware. Our ceremony was one of the most powerful experiences of my life.

I highly recommend this book to men and women who are looking to celebrate a thoughtful, authentic wedding. My husband and I have now recommended this book to some of our friends who are getting married.
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