“If you make your bed every morning, you will have accomplished the first task of the day,” he said. “It will give you a small sense of pride, and it will encourage you to do another task, and another, and another. And by the end of the day that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed.” ~ U.S. Navy Adm. William H. McCraven
I love making my bed, every single morning. It was not like this at all growing up. Ask my mother! When I was growing up, it was a requirement that beds were made. My mother would never allow us to have untidy rooms. Well, as a rebel of authoritative figures, I did all I could NOT to make my bed, and this bad habit carried over into my adulthood.
Up until last year, I was more than content with leaving my bedroom completely untidy, clothes strewn all over the place, as I would get up late, hurriedly preparing for my day and rushing out of the door! This was the norm for me. But I did not realize how much of a negative impact my attitude in the morning had upon my day, until I started making my bed!
Now I have probably mentioned Dr. BJ Fogg before. He is the reason why I make my bed without fail every single day! For those of you who may not be familiar with him, he put together a very simple, free but very powerful program which you can access at Tinyhabits.com, and it so happens to be 100% free. In this program which your register for, you will be prompted to choose 3 very simple, non-evasive habits to choose from amongst a list, and you shall also be asked to select a date from which you will start your new tiny habits. This program lasts for only 5 days. 5 days! Not 90, not 180, just 5!
The habit I really wanted to implement was making my bed every single day without fail. I started the program and ever since, this habit has stuck to me like white on rice.
I believe making your bed every morning is a life-changing ritual. Why?
1. First task of the day accomplished!
Make no mistake, making your bed is like scratching off an activity on your to-do list. It makes you feel good about yourself, and it leaves you asking, “What else is there for me to do today?”
2. It increases productivity
Making your bed sets the agenda for the rest of the day. It boosts your willingness and enthusiasm to actually get more activities done. This habit is like a gateway to getting more activities accomplished than when you start the day in a haphazard way.
3. It’s a domino effect for other good habits
When I chose one of my tiny habits to be making my bed, I realized that if I was going to do it consistently, I had to wake up earlier. I also observed that a well-made bed must be complimented with a tidy bedroom. So I picked up two other awesome habits. These days, I wake up 2 hours earlier than I used to, and I am a much neater individual. All because I decided to start making my bed!
4. Uncluttered spaces equals an uncluttered mind.
“The state of your bed is the state of your head.” This couldn’t be more accurate! I can guarantee that when you walk out of your bedroom, bed unmade and room untidy, that you probably do not have an organized plan for how your day is going to go. If you want peace of mind and organization first thing in the morning, then make your bed. It works every time.
5. When all else goes wrong, you have a made bed, and clean room to come to.
This may sound strange, but nothing makes me happier then walking into my bedroom at the end of the day, and seeing my bed made, and my bedroom neat. It is not only a small win for me, but it also sets my agenda for the evening. I get to plan my to-do list for the next day in a fresh, clean and decluttered space, and it makes all the difference in the world especially if you have had a really bad day.
You may take for granted making a bed as something miniscule or meaningless, but it is considered a key cornerstone habit of success, and I suggest you get with the program and start diligently making yours every morning. (Preferably early so you’re not in too much of a hurry!)
Let me end this post with yet another quote from William McCraven, the commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command:
“Making your bed will also reinforce the fact that the little things in life matter. If you can’t do the little things right, you’ll never be able to do the big things right. And if by chance you have a miserable day, you will come home to a bed that is made — that you made. And a made bed gives you encouragement that tomorrow will be better.”