The Secret to an Amazing Proposal is All in the Story!

Have you ever wondered why some guys seem to have a knack for romance while other guys are…well, they look sort of like Arnold Schwarzenegger in a Jane Austen movie?  Yes, perhaps you consider yourself one of those guys—funny, hardworking and devoted but without a natural “flare” for grand romantic gestures.

You may even be dreading the wedding proposal to come.  Sure, you do want to spend the rest of your life with this beautiful creature.  However, how can you possibly put what you feel into words?

As the title suggests, it’s all in the story.  Don’t overthink this step.  Romance is not something perfectly timed, eloquently worded or over-the-top dramatic.  It is something real, something intimate and something shared between two soul mates.  And of course, some guys do have the tendency to avoid sharing their feelings or discussing raw emotion.

Think About the Story

So here’s an easier way to look at it.  Think about the love you two have as a “story”, a novel, or perhaps a good movie.  Imagine yourself as Bruce Willis or Ryan Gosling if you must!  At the heart of every romance lies a good story.

You didn’t just meet each other and want to get married, right?  No, your love evolved over time and the story of your love affair became deeper, more complicated and far more amazing as time went on.

So I want you think back to the first time you met your partner.  What do you remember about the event?  What were your thoughts during the first date?  How did your attitude towards her change the longer you knew her?  What were some of the major landmarks you remember during your initial courtship, such as restaurants, stores, entertainment shows and the like?

All of these details help to create your personal love story.  These are the individual memories that she and you cherish and that you will forever associate with your marriage.  Isn’t it funny how a restaurant, a song, a movie or a simple gift can convey so much more because it was part of your courtship?

Embrace this perspective.  Start thinking about what you remember and what your girlfriend is sure to remember.  Now comes stage two, transforming these past memories into a moment of reflection for the present.  That is, the wedding proposal, the culmination of all these individual memories.

Crafting the Wedding Proposal Creatively

Now that you have the “story” of your love fresh in mind it’s time to start being nostalgic.  That means working some of the little details you remember into a gushingly romantic presentation.  For example, let me share the proposal strategy of a friend of mine.  He met his girlfriend through the Internet, through an instant messenger profile.  (One keyword search made all the difference in the world!)

He figured he didn’t just want to propose, but wanted to present her with a proposal that was fitting and reminiscent of the way they met.  So what he did was send her a dozen cryptic instant messages, sending her on a bit of a geocaching hunt around town, until she finally found him at the restaurant of their first date.  That’s when he proposed and presented her with a beautiful set of diamond watches and a ring.

Crafting the Wedding Proposal Logistically

You have to think of a proposal as an organized event, even though it does represent spontaneity.  Simply because a poorly planned wedding proposal can be a disaster, especially if it’s a public scene.  (You’re probably thinking of those infamous failed wedding proposals at basketball games, right?)

That’s just one other reason to avoid “spectacle” if at all possible.  It’s one thing to think creatively and to create an amazing little scene.  However, you don’t want to depend too much on uncontrollable, external factors.  In other words, stop thinking “viral” (as in, this is so awesome it will be on the Internet!) and start thinking about your wife’s feelings 30 or 40 years down the road.  What really matters is not how loud people applaud, but how much of an impact it makes on your bride-to-be.

That said, some people can’t help but be theatrical because that’s just in their personality.  Think about the movie Walk the Line which told the love story of Johnny Cash and June Carter.  He had a flare for the dramatic and singing was the “story” of his life and June’s.  No wonder then he proposed in public, and in the middle of a duet song (in front of an audience), when he said, “I have asked you 40 different ways, and it’s time you came up with a fresh answer…You’re my best friend.  Marry me.”

So only plan a dramatic proposal if it’s really in your heart.  Don’t feel obligated to step up to the occasion.  What your girlfriend really wants to see is sincerity, what you remember about your personal love story.  The memories that have mattered to you and will be remembered until the end of time!

Mark Harris is a freelance writer and work-at-home Internet marketer based in White Rock, BC.  When he’s not enjoying the beach, hiking or kayaking, he’s exploring the net on his laptop or browsing sites.  He can be found at one of the local coffee houses in White Rock where he escapes from the home office to get some writing done.