“If you make your bed every morning, you will have accomplished the first task of the day. 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 Admiral William H. McRaven
In a commencement speech in 2014, U.S. Navy Admiral William H. McRaven extolled the value of making your bed each morning. By completing this simple task, he said, you will learn the value of beginning your day with success and accomplishment. And his advice has struck a chord with people everywhere.
There are a number of benefits to making your bed, each small in their own way, but put together they become a compelling reason to make this small habit part of your daily routine. Accomplishing one simple task at the start of your day sets you up for a day of success, leading to good habits in completing the small jobs you might otherwise let lapse. Creating a tidy environment in the area designated for your relaxation allows you an easier, clearer mind, undistracted by clutter and mess.
In The Power of Habit by Pulitzer Prize winning-reporter Charles Duhigg, he states that making your bed is linked with productivity and skills at budgeting. Author Gretchen Rubin says in her best-selling book The Happiness Project that “the number one most impactful change people brought up over and over” was that they started making their bed.
It may seem strange that a task that takes less than 5 minutes can make such a difference, but making your bed has been identified as a keystone habit. Much like cooking your own meals and exercising, this keystone habit has the effect of altering your other routines for the better in a chain-reaction effect. Making your bed may inspire you to notice the clothes you’ve left on the floor and put them away or pick up a glass you left on your bedside table and take it to the kitchen to wash up.
Whether these benefits are motivation enough, McRaven also spoke about perhaps the most compelling reason to make your bed each morning – coming home to a made bed in the evening: “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.”
Discover other ways you can create a relaxing and revitalising nest in Issue 1, Audrey Daybook – Inspiring You.