A young woman in jeans making her bed

The Make Your Bed Challenge: 30 Days to Reap the Results

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What if I told you that making your bed can makeover your life? It might sound crazy, but hear me out.

When my kids were little, mornings were hectic and I’d often put it off until later. Then I’d get distracted and forget, and wind up sleeping in a rumpled bed.

One day, I decided to pre-load it by making my bed before doing anything else. The impact was incredible—it transformed my outlook and my home. Decades later, this is one habit I’ll never give up.

1. Making your bed makes time.

Making your bed every morning might require getting up five minutes earlier so you’ve got space in your morning routine, but it’s worth it.

When you wake up before your kids instead of waking up to them, mornings start off smoother.

For me, it meant shifting things forward so I’d have time to make my bed after breakfast. That meant I had a chance to brush my teeth without someone banging on the bathroom door. It was like a moment of calm before the storm.

Did You Know?

Why did I push it until after breakfast? Because beds need a chance to air out to prevent dust mites. But they don’t need all day—that leaves them gathering other things like dust and pet hair.

2. Come up with better ideas.

Ever noticed that your best ideas come when you’re in the shower? Or how you think up that perfect comeback to a snarky coworker when you’re in the middle of vacuuming?

There’s a reason for that: when our hands are busy, our brains get a chance to solve problems and come up with new ideas.

I’ve had more than one great idea for a blog post pop into my mind while making my bed in the morning. What will you dream up while you’re doing it?

3. An instant refresh.

As the biggest thing in our bedrooms besides the floor, the bed is the room’s focal point. When it’s a mess, the entire bedroom looks messy, even if it’s not.

But the opposite is also true: your room will look cleaner, even if it’s not. Talk about a mood booster—and it gets even better.

4. That sweet, sweet dopamine.

Want to get more done every day? Doctors say that little bursts of dopamine, that feel good hormone triggered by accomplishing things, inspires us to accomplish even more.

So, making your bed first thing can start a whole chain of productive behavior, with each little task’s dopamine release inspiring the next task.

For me, that happens as I cross things off my daily whole-house tidy routine—which I built around this very task.

5. A big bedtime hug.

Some days, the promise of a good night’s sleep is the only thing to keep me going. Ever felt like that?

But when you’ve had a rough day, climbing into an unmade bed feels like yet one more thing you didn’t do right. It compounds all the day’s bad feelings, instead of providing the comfort that you need.

Making my bed every morning now is like giving myself a big hug at bedtime. I can climb between my fresh-scented sheets and know I did at least one thing right.

6. They’re always watching.

Is your child a “mini-me”? My daughter was, and she was the first to say something when I forgot to make my bed.

Once I started making my bed every morning without fail, she stopped arguing about making hers. It became such a natural part of her day that, now in her 30s, she makes her bed every morning still and so do both of her kids.

So getting into the habit of making your bed in the morning doesn’t just set you on a good course for the day, it comforts you at night and it empowers your children, too.

A Make Your Bed Challenge

Are you convinced now? Then I challenge you to try making your bed daily every day for a month and watch how it changes your life.

Comment below to join the challenge, then come back in a month and tell me about your experience making your bed every day. I can’t wait to hear how you do!

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25 Comments

  1. Jill Robbins says:

    I always feel so much better when I make my bed…even if it’s messy and rumpled underneath, pulling up the comforter and arranging the throw pillows just makes me feel more centered. Have a great day!

  2. Kristy as Giftie Etcetera says:

    I can’t stand making the bed. So, instead (because, frankly, your argument has a TON of merit), I started cleaning off the counter. Every morning, I do that first. It’s working!

  3. I’m stuck in the vicious cycle. Not in the habit of doing my bed in the mornings. I think this 30 day challenge is a great idea. I’m going to give it a go.

  4. I am horrible about making my bed first thing in the morning. I can tell you no days that I do though, I feel better and accomplish more around the house. I think I’m gunning to run upstairs and make it right now.

    1. Katie Berry says:

      Isn’t it strange how such a little thing can make such a big difference in your day?

  5. Dea Lenihan says:

    I wanted to dislike this article!
    I have such strong feelings about people forcing others into their way of thinking–like your mom and the military–that I was mad at them FOR you.
    But this article is GREAT–and fits in with my new routine for 2016.
    Thanks so much–great stuff.
    (I popped in from Inspire Me Monday)
    Dea

  6. Elizabeth says:

    I totally subscribe to this. When I think about just leaving a dish instead of putting it in the dishwasher or just washing it I always think “I should just do it now so I don’t have to do it later.” I love walking into my room and having the bed made and everything looking neat. It makes it so much easier to keep the whole house neat! I’m glad you’ve found some peace as well. #InspireMeWednesday

  7. This is amazing, I had no idea that making a bed had that much of a difference on your life — aside from the organized look 🙂 Thank you for sharing!
    – Alexa

    1. Katie Berry says:

      It definitely made a difference in mine! 🙂

  8. Marie from The Interior Frugalista says:

    My grandmother taught me hospital corners when I stayed at her place (which was often) and did the same thing as your Mother if I didn’t make it properly. My Mom carried that tradition and to this day, even while in the final stages of Alzheimers, she can’t dress herself anymore, she doesn’t remember anyone’s name, but she still makes her bed EVERY morning!
    I can attest to the power something as simple as making our bed, can change the tone of the day. Enjoyed reading this post and couldn’t agree more with everything you said. Happy Organized 2016!

    1. Katie Berry says:

      Isn’t it amazing how things like that stay with us our whole life? God bless your Mom.

  9. I can’t stand making the bed, I really don’t see the point, although if what you say is true, it make be worth it.

    I like the idea of cleaning of the kitchen counters every morning. This would actually put me in a great mood all day.

    I accept your 30 day bed making challenge, I’m going to add kitchen counters to the challenge too. I’m off to make my bed.

  10. Mary-the boondocks blog says:

    I ‘ve always been a fan of making my bed. I can’t think straight when it is a mess. I need reasonable order to function, s imple as that!

    1. Katie Berry says:

      I’m so glad to know I’m not the only one who can’t think when surrounded by a mess. If I let things slide for a few days I can literally feel my mood growing worse until I take the time to sort the clutter and restore order again.

  11. I straighten and pull the covers up…..does that count?! I already multi-task by putting dishes away while waiting for the coffee to brew, wiping the sink and bathroom after brushing my teeth and straightening the room the computer is in before sitting in front of it to work. Great idea !

    1. Katie Berry says:

      Pulling up the covers and straightening them definitely counts, AnnMarie. The important thing is that your bed isn’t a tangled mess of sheets, since it makes the rest of the room look messy, and that you’re in a daily habit of doing something that gets the cleaning-ball rolling.

  12. Wanda Ann says:

    I totally agree! Great post! I feel so much better when I make my bed and at night it makes you feel better to get into a made bed!
    Thanks for sharing on Treasure Box Tuesday.
    Wanda Ann @ Memories by the Mile

    1. Katie Berry says:

      I sleep better in a bed that’s been made, too, which is odd because the first thing I do when I get in bed is yank the covers around me until I’m in a blanket burrito.

      Thanks for hosting!

  13. I’ve always made my bed, but not right away. I throw back the covers and let the bed air out while I shower and dress, then make it. It’s never been so the room looks nice, it’s because at the end of the day, it’s a real pleasure to get into a well-made bed.

    My entire house can be a disaster, but my bed is always made with the linens smoothed out. Sometimes I feel its a little weird to be so disorganized and messy, but that bed is perfect!

    1. Katie Berry says:

      You’ve got the timing AND the priorities down!

  14. I’ve never wanted to make this a habit, or even do it at all really- I never have seen the point since I use it every night, and the messy look has never bothered me. But as a new housewife I have felt very overwhelmed, despite making my own schedule and having no kids. Also I am stumped as to why, since I loved homemaking before and considered this living situation a dream come true. I came across this article of yours after reading a couple others of yours about organizing. I don’t need the help really, but have hoped that reading about it will get me more inspired to create a routine. I like to be spontaneous, and have resisted routine, but it’s quickly becoming the only option I haven’t tried. And reading your simple idea alone: “It will change your life,” and hearing out your explanation, I accept your challenge. I’ll do it for 30 days and then let you know whatever impact it makes. Thank you for the motivation!

    1. Katie Berry says:

      I’m looking forward to hearing back from you in 30 days, Alison! Meanwhile, don’t come down on yourself too hard for feeling a little disillusioned now that you’re a new housewife. You’d described it as a “dream come true,” but sometimes we think things will be one way yet they turn out another. Be sure to balance your life with fun activities and things that feed your soul, not just cleaning (or making your bed)!

  15. michelle m says:

    I have made mine since I was a kid, we were taught to make it up after we brushed our teeth in the morning. I now add spraying my pillows and sheets with an antibacterial spray . I have feather pillows and kitties that like to lay on them. Even though they are under the covers , sometimes they still manage to sleep on them , or under the bed spread. So I have extra incentive to make up my bed, so I don’t sleep in a nest of cat fur. Having an unmade bed makes me twitchy.

  16. Connie Barra says:

    I started making my bed in the morning not by choice. The US Army made me do it. 40 years later I find it to be a great habit. There is nothing like getting into a nice neat bed. I use a lavender vanilla linen spray that just lulls me to sleep.

    1. Katie Berry says:

      I love that you embraced it! My husband’s reaction to the Army requirement was just the opposite, which is why I was the one making it. 😂

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