When it comes time to propose, you’ll want to plan something special. An engagement is a once-in-a-lifetime moment that both of you will remember for eternity. Remember that you'll be telling your engagement story over and over again to family members, friends, coworkers and just about everyone else you know. So you definitely want to make it memorable.
The key behind a perfect proposal is planning. Yes, planning may not be the most romantic thing in the world, but it’s necessary. When you have a fully formed plan, you’ll be much more likely to be able to surprise and thrill her with your proposal.
Here are some practical tips for putting together a proposal that will take her breath away.
Before You Propose: Make Sure She’ll Say Yes
This technically isn’t a part of the proposal process, but it’s certainly important. Before you propose, you’ll want to be sure that she’ll say yes. If you propose and she doesn’t immediately say yes, it will be an awkward and potentially painful situation for both of you. A failed proposal can even seriously damage your relationship.
How do you know that she’ll say yes? Think about what you’ve talked about in the past. Have you ever discussed marriage? Does she want to get married? Have you ever talked about what your future together will be like? Does she say things like “When we’re married…” or “When we’re old and grey together…?” Any statements like this can be good signs that she’ll likely say yes to your proposal.
Now that you're confident that she'll say yes, it's time to come up with a plan.
Step 1: Set a Budget
Again, budgeting isn’t the most romantic action, but it’s needed. Once you’ve set your budget, you’ll have a better idea of what you can actually afford to do. Remember that you’re not just budgeting for the ring. You’ll also need to take all of your other expenses into consideration. Are you dining out at a fancy restaurant? Are you going to buy flowers? Are you planning on taking a trip? Factor all of these things into your budget. Having a well-planned budget makes planning a proposal much easier.
Step 2: Find the Perfect Ring
Some people get anxious about buying an engagement ring, but it doesn’t have to be a scary process. The key is research. Here are three points that will help you find the right engagement ring:
Research diamonds. Visit our diamond education center for some great tips.
Research jewelers. Read online reviews, ask friends and shop around before buying your ring.
- Research her style. What kind of jewelry does she wear? What sort of styles does she like? Look into her existing jewelry to help you figure this out. For more tips, check out our post on buying her the engagement ring she really wants.
Step 3: Pick a Meaningful Location
The location of the proposal is almost as important as the ring. Some people choose to take a fabulous vacation and propose there. Others choose to “re-enact” their first date by visiting the same restaurant or coffee shop, or by taking the same walk that they did when they first met their soulmate. Whatever you choose to do, make it meaningful.
Picking a location that is memorable, that means something to the two of you or that is significant to your relationship will make the proposal that much more special and emotional.
Step 4: Decide What You’ll Say
You don’t want to read from a script, but you’ll want to have a general idea of what you’re going to say when you pop the question. And you’ll want to rehearse it a few times. Proposing is very emotional and, under pressure, you’ll be much less likely to be able to speak “off the cuff.” If you’ve rehearsed your speech in advance, you stand a better chance at remembering what you wanted to say.
Step 5: Go With the Flow
It’s also important to remember that sometimes things will go wrong. Despite your best planning, the restaurant may not have the dish that the two of you ordered on your first date, for example. It could rain, which would certainly put a damper on the long walk on the beach that you planned. That’s okay! While planning is important, it’s also important to be able to adapt your plan and go with the flow.
If something happens that throws a hitch into your perfect proposal, don’t lose your cool. Change things up and keep going. You may even want to have a few “back up plans” in mind just in case.