Ben Higgins: Hitting Pause on Wedding Planning with Lauren Bushnell 'Allowed Us to Get Really Excited' About Marriage

Former Bachelor star Ben Higgins says he and his fiancée Lauren Bushnell are in no rush to wed

Photo: Valorie Darling

The Bachelor‘s Ben Higgins and fiancée Lauren Bushnell have been engaged for more than a year, but wedding planning is currently not on the agenda — for now!

“[Planning a wedding] is difficult,” Higgins, 29, exclusively tells PEOPLE. “We are definitely trying to. Us not planning a wedding yet has been actually something that has been really positive for us. It’s freed up a lot of time. It’s allowed us not to stress about the confines of planning a wedding and allowed us to get really excited about the idea of a wedding.”

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“For a while we were really stressed with everything going on,” he continues. “Planning a wedding on top of being really stressed was not a healthy place for us, but now as life has freed up and we’re not as stressed, and we are enjoying life more and having more freedom, planning a wedding is just a really exciting thing for us.”

Higgins proposed to Bushnell on The Bachelor‘s 20th season and since then, the two have remained focused on their individual projects (Higgins is working on opening a for-profit coffee company, Bushnell is continuing to work on her blog Sparkle in her Eye), humanitarian work, building their relationship and even first revealing they’d hit pause on wedding planning as part of their reality show Ben & Lauren: Happily Ever After?

“I still want to marry Lauren, very much so,” Higgins previously told PEOPLE. “Our relationship is better now than it has ever been.”

The couple are now lending their support to fellow Bachelor alums Emily and Haley Ferguson, who have scored their own docu-series: The Twins: Happily Ever After?

“The twins are just these lovable, very funny in their own right people who are just trying to explore life for the first time,” he says. “Lauren especially has taken the twins under her wing and has just been a support system for them, to try to show them the world that exists out there.”

He adds, “They are really the only two girls outside of Lauren that I really stayed in really close communication with from The Bachelor, and that is simply because they have just became such good friends to us in so many ways.”

Ronda Churchill/Freeform

Higgins and Bushnell will appear on Monday’s episode of The Twins: Happily Ever After at 9 p.m. PT on Freeform.

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