You are one of two kinds of people: you either make your bed religiously each morning or you don’t.
We aren’t here to judge (especially since I’m in the latter camp) BUT if you get up each morning and make your bed as a priority, and don’t race downstairs to scroll through your shiny smartphone instead, you’re a much more productive person.
If you crave a hospital corner, on paper (at least!) you are a much more organised, and a generally better person to live with.
Suddenly it all makes sense.
I mean, COME ON. Who looks this cheery making their bed? Only girls with thighs like her, that’s who.
I guess the thing is, after we stop being nagged by our parents to make our beds, the choice to do it or not becomes completely our own. And that’s where the true test of our personality comes to the fore.
A survey of 68,000 people by Hunch.com, revealed 59 per cent of people don’t make their beds, while 27 per cent do. The other 12 per cent pay someone to do it for them, lucky buggers. (Post continues after gallery.)
It comes down to this: pure laziness (and remember, I’m including my good self in that observation). We get up, we’ve got places to be, stuff to do and the last thing we feel is necessary is to fit the sheet back to the mattress and put the doona back on neatly.
But that’s where a lot of us are wrong, because:
Check out this simple video (Post continues after video)
I guess, really, in the scheme of things, this chore, exercise should really take 5 minutes, tops. And if we think about how much extra time we spend on the loo these days scrolling on our smart phones, it just takes a bit of self discipline to make it happen.
You can even use those two minutes tucking and smoothing to go through your to-do list of the day and mentally prepare for what’s in store.
Naval Admiral William McRaven nails it in his commencement speech a the University of Texas, Austin:
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.
By the end of the day, that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed. Making your bed will also reinforce the fact that little things in life matter.
The thing is your bedroom is the only place in the house that is truly yours. It is your sanctuary and the one place you are allowed to be you. So if it not full of shoes and messy beds and books strewn all over the floor, you can internally relax.
There has been a recent surge in decluttering books and methods, more notably Marie Kondo’s declutter bible The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, all linking clutter to higher levels of stress.
Most importantly, it helps declutter your MIND.
It increases productivity and happiness.
In the Hunch.com survey showed 71 per cent of bed makers say they are happy, while 62 per cent of non-bed makers consider themselves unhappy.
Well shit. That’s pretty heavy. Could the root of all of my problems really be caught up in the fact that I leave my bed unmade each morning?
Bed makers are also more likely to enjoy their jobs, work out regularly and get more sleep, compared to non-bed makers, who hate their jobs, avoid the gym and are generally tired, according to Psychology Today.
Moreover, according to The Power of Habit, by Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times reporter Charles Duhigg, making your bed can boost productivity and create stronger skills at sticking with a budget.
It prepares you for things you don’t want to do.
Because in life, there are always things we don’t want to do. Vacuum, wash the dishes, go the in-laws. By doing something you don’t want to do, you are mentally preparing yourself and getting into the habit of doing crap tasks so that you appreciate the good times. And because those toilets ain’t gonna clean themselves.
Bed making is a gateway drug.
It’s the first step to routine. All routines have to start somewhere and keystone habits are routines that if identified, spill over into other feel-good habits like cooking your own food or going to the gym. Although I personally wouldn’t say that going to the gym is really so much ‘feel-good’ as ‘feel-like-shite’.
Every person’s habit differs; it can range from watching less TV to eating an apple a day. Research also shows when we focus on small changes like cooking one meal a week, improving your posture or going to bed a few minutes earlier, the improvement is likely to spread to other habits. Like one less drink. Or one less episode on Netflix when we are binge-viewing.
According to experts, none of which I have the names of right now, it takes 66 days, or just over two months for a task to turn into a habit or routine. Basically, it’s about starting as you mean to finish: with good habits and making them your normal.
What side of the fence are you on? Are you the dedicated bed maker or do you leave it as is, wondering why people even bother when they’re only going to mess it all up again when they get back in again each night?