“I love drama!” Unless you’re an outgoing high-school student or the host of “Masterpiece Theater”, that’s probably NOT a phrase you utter often. To most of us, “drama” means snits, resentments and grumbling – exactly the kind of things you DON’T want anywhere near your wedding day.

Want to cut the drama and increase the “happy” at your Chicago-area wedding? Here are 4 ways to get it done.

1.Hire a great planner.

The devil’s in the details – and the best way to avoid him is to be somewhere else.

Details make or break any big event, and juggling them all is a sure-fire way to pile stress on yourself or the people you ask to help out. A great wedding planner tackles the last-minute problems – everything from notifying vendors of a schedule change to getting makeup stains out of your bridal gown – so you don’t have to. Even better, she knows what questions to ask and what changes to make months in advance so that last-minute problems never come up to begin with.

A wedding’s a big undertaking; do yourself a favor and benefit from the experience of someone who’s done it many, many times before.

4 Ways to Decrease Wedding Drama2. Delegate authority, don’t share it.

Of course, it’s only natural that you ask your friends and family to help out with some parts of the planning. Remember that the easiest way to enlist help is to delegate responsibility to ONE person – and then trust them to hold up their end as they see fit.

Don’t second-guess the people you’ve asked to help, and don’t put more than one person in charge of the same thing. It’s a recipe for conflict.

3. Hire a great MC.

A wedding with a lazy MC is like an orchestra with a lazy conductor: Sloppy.

After your planner, the person who has the greatest opportunity to make your wedding smooth as silk – or messy as a maelstrom –is your DJ/MC. This person will control more than music. They’ll notify your guests of every important event, make sure that every speech and dance takes place when it should, and keep your photographer in the loop so that no photo opportunity is missed due to a badly timed bathroom break.

4. Limit spontaneity.

At parties, spontaneous moments are the best ones! The unplanned kisses and the unexpected dance circles might just be the moments you remember most. But your entire reception can’t be run that way. Allowing anyone who wants give a toast, request a song or otherwise take the spotlight can sometimes be a recipe for disaster.

Instead, work with your DJ to decide which parts of your party should be tightly scheduled – and which can be handled with a bit more of a “call ‘em as you see ‘em” approach. In most cases this mean keeping the microphone away from folks you haven’t pre-approved –but letting the mood and whim of guests be a key factor in deciding what works on the dance floor.

Of course, the key here is that you’ll need to trust your DJ – and that means working with a proven pro.