It’s a simple act, really. You get out of bed, gently arrange your sheets and blankets into a more presentable design, and then go on with your day. Making your bed is easy- it only takes a minute- so why aren’t more people doing it?
The first potential reason is that we dedicate our mornings to other activities. Waking up, eating breakfast, and getting out of the door often takes priority over cleaning your room first thing in the morning. We’re limited on time. The second reason is that it just doesn’t seem important. We’re perfectly capable of sleeping in a messy bed, so why take the time to make it if you’re just going to ruin it later?
Despite popular belief, making your bed every morning can actually be good for your mental and physical health. Here’s why.
1. You set yourself up for success
In his commencement address to the University of Texas graduating class of 2014, U.S. Navy Admiral William H. McRaven, the commander of U.S. Special Operations, credits his success and discipline not only to intense training, but also to making his bed every morning.
Yes, making his bed.
“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. 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.”
2. You clear your mind
Cleaning expert Jolie Care believes that a clean bed can make your room look tidier, no matter what state your floor is in. Do you have a pile of clothes in the corner of your room? How about all over your floor? A tidy bed can enhance the overall feeling of the room, spreading a sense of calm. Jolie also points out that you feel an overwhelming sense of comfort from a tidy space (and bed)- especially when you’re coming home for the evening. After all, the last thing you want to do when you get home from a long day of work is clean.
3. You get better sleep
According to the National Sleep Foundation, people who make their beds in the morning are 19% more likely to get a good night’s sleep every morning. Not surprising, considering over 62% of people believe that a clean bedroom makes a difference in their sleep quality.
How? Sleep experts universally recommend that people with sleep issues should establish nighttime rituals so that their mind knows when it’s time to go to bed. Jolie, in an episode of the podcast “Ask a Clean Person”, explains that one component of those nighttime rituals should be turning down the bed. The simple act of turning back the covers and re-arranging of the pillows can signify to your body that it’s time to rest.
4. You stay on top of your health
Making your bed every morning can give you a lot of health benefits. Pets, for one, often use the bed as a resting place during the day. If your bed isn’t made, your pet will transfer whatever residue is on their paws to your sheets. The last thing you want is to roll around on dirt, grime, or litter while you’re sleeping. A clean bed will help you maintain the cleanliness of your sheets and prevent this from happening.
Making your bed in the morning is also a great way to freshen your sheets if you suffer from night sweats. Jolie, in an article for Deadspin, describes how to make your bed to help properly air out your sheets after a rough night.
- Pull the top sheet and blanket (or comforter, quilt, coverlet, etc.) down to the foot of the bed, and remove the pillows from the head of the bed. (On the fence about top sheets? Read about the great top sheet debate.)
- Pull the bottom sheet taut and re-tuck it under the mattress.
- Straighten, and retuck if necessary, the top sheet by pulling the top edge back up to the head of the bed, then fold it halfway back on itself.
- Fold the blanket (or comforter, quilt, coverlet, etc.) and place it at the foot of the bed.
- Straighten the pillowcases and put the pillows back at the head of the bed.
The result? Clean and dry sheets.
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Do you make your bed every morning? Share below!