I came across a video a very long time ago, yet, it has always stuck with me. This video was a commencement speech by Admiral William H McCraven, at the University of Texas in 2014. He speaks about life, Navy Seal training, and the lessons he learned throughout his life and military career to ensure success and a positive outlook on life. He told students that the importance of making your bed every day was one of the most powerful lessons he learned during his time as a Navy SEAL.

“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 will have turned into many tasks completed.”

After watching this I was impressed, I told myself “Let me try this out and see how things go”. Well,  soon after this I found out he authored the book ‘Make Your Bed: Little Things Can Change Your Life…and Maybe the World.’  At this point, I bought the book and one thing led to another, and I have become a chronic bed maker. Although I am not in the military, I believe that this is a great way to look at your life and attack each day to better yourself. Since the day I watched this video and even more since reading his book, making my bed has become a routine in my life that I will never remove. Each day I wake, I get ready and the last thing I do before I leave the room is make my bed, this has become so automatic that wherever I am I make the bed: hotel room, friend’s house, sofa etc the bed will always be made. On most days I do this so automatic without thinking however, on some days when I am feeling a little down or need that extra push to get through a hard or busy day, I spend an extra few minutes looking at my bed after I have made it, I stand and stare and always think to myself:

 I have accomplished the first task of the day, and even if I do not achieve anything else today, I have at least completed one task. (My own spin on Admiral McCraven speech) 

And each night I enter my room, I look at the bed and it genuinely does make me feel calm and collected, my room feels tidy and inviting and well I guess you may have heard a tidy room is a tidy mind………

If you think that you can benefit from professional support on this issue you can reach out here.

Stef Gafa’ is a counsellor with Willingness who has a particular interest in trauma, attachment, domestic violence and the LGBT community.


University of Texas at Austin 2014 Commencement Address – Admiral William H. McRaven – YouTube