First step in productive day: making your bed

By Gracie Ozburn | LTVN Reporter/Anchor

Growing up, I was always told to make my bed, but I never understood why. I would take the command as just another boring chore to do, until I discovered in college the true impact behind the simple task.

When waking up, most have a routine already in place of getting dressed and brushing your teeth. Without doing these things, it could throw off your day. If you start the day off being productive and being organized, it gives you a sense of accomplishment and it creates a positive state of mind.

In a viral commencement speech, Admiral William McRaven told the University of Texas at Austin’s class of 2014 about how motivating and rewarding the task can be.

“The idea of making the bed is it’s the same sense of discipline,” McRaven says. “It’s the same sense that you’re going to get up and do something, but it’s an easy task to undertake … It’s about making your bed right and walking away and going … ‘I’m proud of this little task I did.’ And that is really what I think sets the tone for the rest of the day.”

Not only do you get the sense of accomplishment, but it can just overall boost your mood. Starting off the day can sometimes be a little hectic or unmotivating, but getting to check off a box can lead to a release of dopamine.

In a survey by, out of 68,000 people, 59% of people don’t make their beds while 27% do. The other 12% pay a housekeeper to make it for them. These results also included 71% of bed-makers consider themselves to be happy, while 62% of non-bed-makers admit to being unhappy.

These statistics concerned me, because people are holding themselves back from even the smallest amount of happiness. When happy, it pushes you to be more motivated and to get things done. Many people are so content in their everyday life and get caught up in a redundant routine.

“You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily,” John C. Maxwell, an American author, speaker and pastor said. “The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.”

There is so much truth into this quote, because when you focus on small impactful changes, it can truly make a difference. And even if everything else goes wrong in your day, at least you can come home to a made bed.