Make your bed: why it is the most important step to a fulfilled day

“If you want to change the word start off by making your bed.” – Admiral William H. McRaven

Make your bed. It is one of the best things you can do create a life you love.

There are a plethora of reasons why you should make your bed, and many benefits of doing so. If you are not someone who regularly makes your bed, you might not easily connect doing so to aiding in the creation of your life. But it does.

Simply put: making your bed sets a positive tone to start your day in an organized way. And that opens you to opportunities to create.

I don’t remember a time when I didn’t make my bed. (In fact, there are many photos of my childhood bedroom, and of my siblings and I in it, and not one shows an unmade bed.) And I don’t say that to sound like a martyr or better than the next person. I say it because I can’t picture that bedroom where the bed was not made. And I know, now, that it has positively affected who I am and the work I do.

That might sound silly or odd to suggest that learning to make this task a habit could affect the trajectory of my life. But I am positive of its affects.

It wasn’t my mother who made the bed. It was my mother who taught me and my siblings to make our own beds, early on, because she knew then as she still does, that a made bed sets a tone for the whole day, and that it will be one with order at the core.

Make your bed

Order is an important part of being and feeling free to create. Order does not mean perfect. And it does not mean everything you planned for will run smoothly. It means you give yourself the best chance that they will.

Put things in place.

Making your bed is a metaphor that means you have put what you can in place. And having things in place, in order, prepares you for any number of things that get tossed your way.

Things aren’t perfect. They are in place.

And when they are in place, you are ready to catch all kinds of curve balls. You know, those things that come out of left field that you have to address, that can send you off course – the emergencies and last minute requests from your boss, the dog literally eating the homework, the cat tossing cookies in the hallway on your new scatter rug.

These will send you off course. And for some it can be a downward spiral that feels impossible to recover from. Life throws a lot of curve balls at you. And it shouldn’t be your goal to live your life without the rouge ball being hurled into your life, upsetting the apple cart.

In fact, when you put things into place and things don’t go as planned – and they often won’t – you aren’t already in a state of flux, or in a tizzy, so you can more easily – perhaps more calmly – address the mess.

Putting things in place gives you an opportunity to trust in yourself to handle all the little, and big, things that can derail you from your plan. When things are in place, it is a signal to the brain, and to your self that says I am starting this day, or project, or goal, on even ground.

And with that you have more of a chance to succeed.

That mental massage you give your brain is very important. Instead of it trying to make sense of all that it out of place, it rests easier. And you are then able to approach the mishaps with less angst. Your brain deserves the opportunity to give you a better chance at winning the day.

The goal of life, after all, is not to avert chaos or go through your day unscathed.

It is to live it well, with some semblance of peace (and quiet!) despite the noise and messiness that is inherent in living life.

The benefits of minimalism

Set the tone for the day

When you make your bed you set that all important tone of preparedness for your day. It is not unlike how you feel when walking into a hotel room. You are met with a made bed and it sets the tone for the entire room. It beckons you to rest. It feels light and happy and that feeling leaves you asking “What are we going to do today?!” It is endless what you might choose.

That feeling is what you can give yourself every day by making your bed.

You make your bed and you start the day off well. You are met with quiet and calm when you enter your room, not with chaos or a feeling of dread. That feeling breeds an overall sense and desire to have calm and breath in your space.

Why make your bed if you are just going to get back in it?

I had a client who asked me to talk to her children about organizing their room. Now, you know that the first thing I talked to them about was about making their bed. One child understood my suggestion that making the bed left the room feeling a certain way, and that the made bed injected some calm into the space.

One child did not understand my reasoning. He challenged me saying, “I think making a bed is a waste of time because you just get back in it at the end of the day.”

It is a fair argument and not illogical thinking.  You do get into it again at the end of a day. But that doesn’t make it a waste of time any more than brushing and flossing your teeth daily would be. Why bother doing that? You’ll just get them dirty when you eat.

Of course you do bother because when you don’t brush and floss food gets stuck and plaque builds and then you get cavities, which means you have to go to the dentist and …that drill…oh…just the sound.

The same goes for making a bed. Every day you don’t make your bed you let plague build.

You start the day just a little more off than normal. At first it is negligible – you can hardly feel it. But every day you give plaque an opportunity to build and you start to feel it. The clutter cavity forms and grows. Things pile up on the floor, the bed – any flat surface all because the focal point – your bed – is out of sorts.

Clutter breeds clutter and an unmade bed welcomes that clutter in.

And when you end the day, you walk into a space that affirms how you are feeling — untidy, perhaps unkempt, tired. Instead of walking into a room that beckons you to relax and sleep you come straight into the dentist’s chair.

Make your bed is a life lesson and an organizational tool all rolled up into one.

So what stops you from doing this important task?

One reason is you might not know how to make a bed, which can often lead you to thinking you don’t have time to do it. In fact, not knowing how to make a bed becomes a subconscious excuse to not do the task.

I know as you read that you are probably thinking how silly it is that how to make a bed is integral to you actually doing it. But we can substitute not knowing how to make a bed for a lot of other things that prevent you from living healthy.

How many times have you said or heard someone say, “I don’t have time to cook a meal, let alone a healthy one”. You can’t seem to find the time but it might be code for I don’t completely know what is entailed in the task.

The same goes for making a bed. But it doesn’t have to be difficult – or perfect. In fact, in making a bed I am talking about simply pulling the sheets and comforter tight to the top of the bed and straightening out the pillows. It can take quite literally 17 seconds to make your bed. {We all have 17 seconds and if you don’t feel like you do set your alarm for one minute earlier in the morning. You’ll be happy for the extra 43 seconds as well.}

When you break things down into simple steps, and manage your time around those bite-sized steps, you will find time is on your side.

The bottom line is, you don’t need to be a master to progress with your goals. You just need to be willing to try.

If you had to choose one thing to check off your list have it be to make your bed.

Making your bed means you are cultivating an integral habit to create a sense of order in your space and your life. It can single handily affect the mood and tone of your entire day – perhaps especially at the end of the day.

Think about what it feels like coming into your bedroom after a long day. If the bed is made does it not beckon you to it? Everything could have gone wrong in your day and what a welcomed treat to be greeted with a bed that says

“I’ve got your back.”

If you want be able to function efficiently in your day-to-day make your bed. When you do you

– complete your first tidy-up task of the day before you have even left your room boosting your esteem boosting and providing lasting, positive effects for your day.

– ease into the day and makes choosing simple, simple!

– feel serene because with the act of making the bed comes this desire to want to continue that put-together, streamlined, and simple feeling as you move forward with your day.

– are more likely to keep clutter at bay. Just like clutter breeds clutter, order breeds order and a desire to keep your space feeling tidy, neat, and calm.

Your life is made up of days and moments and if you want to make the most of them, you have to allow for a sense of order. A made bed does that. It is one of the most important organizational tools in the tool shed. And the feeling it breeds when it is used is what helps makes your day – and your life – feel more fulfilled.

Leave a Comment

Get In Touch

Send me an email and I will get back to you, asap.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt

Start typing and press Enter to search

five things to purge from your kitchen cabinets