Friday, May 13, 2011

Plan an Awesome Proposal

Ask any married woman what some of the most memorable moments in her life have been and the day she got engaged is sure to feature in her answer. The bad news is that more times than not, it rests entirely on poor, unfortunate males to ensure that they get it right and it’s remembered for all the right reasons. Does the thought of it make you sweat buckets? Does it make you have nightmares about styles of engagement rings and romantic-but-not-too-cheesy-that-she-cringes speeches? If so, then it’s time you took some advice from a guy who has been there, done that, had the nightmares, bought the ring and lived to tell the tale.

Be careful with over-the-top proposals

When it comes to proposals, as a guy, your first instinct might be to try and one-up the competition and come up with a brilliant proposal that you think will sweep your girl off her feet. My advice is, unless you know for sure your girl absolutely prefers the “big deal” proposal, to just keep the proposal simple. Pick a nice spot to propose, get her an engagement ring you know she will like and keep any speech you might have planned to a short and meaningful amount of words. Also, while it’s not entirely mandatory for all proposals, getting her parents’ blessing before the proposal is something that you might want to consider. Some girls and parents might find that as a nice gesture, and it might put a few extra romantic points in your corner. At the end of the day, your girl will (or should!) value the fact that you proposed at all and did something that most guys have trouble doing (dare I say “commit”).

Keep it simple, stupid

I proposed to my girlfriend Christmas morning. I waited for my fiancée to go upstairs because I wanted to propose to her in private. After all, proposing in front of an audience (especially a girlfriend’s family) can feel like playing Russian roulette with the amount of risk and pressure involved. I went into her room and handed her a card, which said something to the effect of “I look forward to being your fiancé, Merry Christmas.” I could tell she was confused because we weren’t technically engaged yet. With my heart thumping in my chest in anxiousness, I followed the card up with an engagement ring, got on one knee and proposed. She happily said yes and we went downstairs to share the good news with her family. After being with her for a little more than a year and a half, we were now a full-fledged engaged couple. The proposal was a Christmas gift that we’ll never forget.

Yes, it might have been a clichéd day to pop the question, but I knew for sure she would remember it even more because of the significance of the day. However, not every proposal has to happen on a big day. You can easily turn an ordinary day into something memorable with just the proposal itself, so keep that in mind when making your plan.

Wait for the right moment

When it comes to proposals, my advice is to do it only when you’re both ready and have the right moment. There’s nothing more stressful than trying to put something as important as a proposal together when you or your partner are simply not ready to handle it. It might feel forced or not come off as sincere and genuine as you would want it to be. Also, pressing the proposal topic too early in a relationship is more likely to send up red flags and possibly lead to distancing which can be a relationship killer, so waiting for the appropriate moment is key.

-Joe Pasternak