It’s that time of year, my friends. A season for cookie decorating, tree-trimming, and marriage proposals. Asking your partner to marry you can be both an exhilarating and nerve-wracking experience. Expectations are high, especially around the holiday season.

Don’t worry—you can set your worries aside. As a professional wedding vow and proposal writer, I’ve outlined the five tips you need to follow to write a wow-worthy proposal speech.

1. Plan Ahead

Before you sit down to write your marriage proposal, make a plan. I recommend keeping a small notepad with you for a few weeks. You can also use a notetaking app on your phone.

Leading up to your proposal date, jot down any random thought, emotion, or story that comes to mind as you go about your daily routine.

Another way to prepare is with a brainstorm. Dedicate 15 to 30 minutes for writing down thoughts about your love. Here are a few questions you can use to spark your creativity and get some ideas to surface.

· What did you think and feel when you two first met?
· What was the moment you knew you were in love?
· What are your favorite characteristics about your partner?
· What makes your relationship unique?
· How did you know you wanted to marry this person?
· What are you most excited about when you think of your marriage?

2. Share a Personal Anecdote

Start your marriage proposal by sharing a personal story about your partner and relationship. Ideally, this will be a personal thought that you have not previously verbalized to your partner.

For example, explain how you felt the first time you saw your partner or knew you loved them. This is where your brainstorming notes will come in handy.

When you express a vulnerable detail that has not been shared before, your partner will feel loved and special. Plus, reminiscing on those early milestones is a romantic way to set the stage for your proposal.

3. Communicate Why You Love Your Partner

Once you’ve shared a personal anecdote, the next step in the proposal writing process is to describe why you love your partner. What makes them special or unique? How do they make you feel or make you a better person?

Let’s look at a few examples:

“You have been my best friend and my greatest support these past three years. I can’t imagine not having your compassionate hand to hold and your kind heart to care for. You are such a selflessly giving person and I’m so grateful to have you in my life.”

“Whether it’s being there to calm my seemingly endless anxiety or showing up to celebrate in my successes—you are always there for me. You support everything I do and your belief in my dreams makes me want to be a better person for myself and for you.”

“You make me feel loved in every way. From the way you smile at me when I simply walk in a room to how you thoughtfully keep my particular palette in mind with your cooking—you make me feel special and loved.”

4. Explain Why You’re Excited for Marriage

End your proposal by communicating why you are looking forward to marriage together. What about your future makes you smile? Why are you choosing marriage?

Here are some examples to reference:

“I’ve always known that I wanted to be married but it wasn’t until I met you that I could see it being a reality in my life. With you, I see a future full of unconditional love, endless support, and a lifetime of growing together.”

“I choose you to create a life together as one team. I choose us to believe in and rely on when times get tough. I choose our future as the promise I make to you now.”

“I can’t imagine not committing my life to you and to us. You’ve made me a happier, stronger, and better person. I can’t wait to commit to a life of growing together.”

5. Document Your Speech

No matter where or how you plan to propose this holiday season, consider documenting this monumental milestone. Hire a videographer or call on a close friend to record the proposal. This is a great way to share the moment with family and friends who may not be present for the event. Additionally, this makes for the most special keepsake that can be shared with future children and grandchildren.

Follow these five tips and you’ll be in perfect holiday proposal spirits. But if you still seem stuck and in search of more help, Wedding Words has got you covered. We work one-on-one with future brides and grooms to plan the perfect proposal speech.

Now it’s your time to share with us. How do you plan to propose this holiday season? What do you wish to say to your love? Feel free to share with us on Instagram! Find more expert advice in our planning section & some sparkling (affordable) engagement rings here.