Just Make Your Bed

The sound of your alarm is becoming more annoying with each passing second before you finally press the snooze button for the third time. You know you won’t be any more well rested trying to sleep in 10 minute increments but you just don’t want to get up. You don’t want to make breakfast, or brush your teeth, or feed the cat. You just want to sleep. Or you just want to not face the day at all and remain encased in a blanket burrito.

At some point you wonder if you can even get up and face the day.

Raise your hand if you've hit this snooze button before! Bonus points if you hit the "radio" button instead of snooze.
Raise your hand if you’ve hit this snooze button before! Bonus points if you hit the “radio” button instead of snooze.

 Your brain starts to wake up and floods with all the things you should get done. You have to take out the trash, get ready for work, go to that god awful meeting that should be an email that no one wants to be there for, and just as you start to think about how you need to buy groceries for the week which means you have to actually think about meal planning you can feel yourself grab a bunch of covers and shove them violently over your head.

Everyone has mornings like this but if you have a history of depression, this might be an early warning sign that it wants to creep back into your life. Especially if this keeps happening several mornings in a row, or instead of being late you don’t get up. For some folks this is just a bad day. Either way, it’s not fun to feel like you’ve already lost the day before you even push your feet into slippers and brew your first cup of tea.

Just get up and make your bed.

It’s a small thing but it’s important. Only adults and very responsible teenagers make their beds. You got up and you’ve already accomplished something! Man those pillows look awesome neatly arranged against the headboard instead of on the floor or shoved underneath the blankets. “I have great taste, my bed looks awesome.” You did it! You got up, you accomplished something and you’ve managed to smile for half a second. Given that it’s early and you didn’t want to face the day a moment ago, you’re already winning.

Little victories matter. Give yourself one everyday.

Maybe you have coffee, then you make the bed. However you have to bribe yourself, whatever works.
Maybe you have coffee, then you make the bed. However you have to bribe yourself, whatever works.

I could bore you with the science of this but it’s generally pretty well accepted that “starting small” when you feel overwhelmed helps you feel accomplished and maintain motivation. You even get to do this cool thing where you say “I’ll just make the bed and that’s it,” but of course as soon as you’re up and the bed is made you make the coffee, then you get dressed for the day. It helps you put one foot in front of the other.

The other reason I suggest making the bed is because it’s the garden of our dreams and it’s much easier than weeding an actual garden. When you get home after a busy day and only have time to watch one reality TV show before you brush your teeth (and floss, you totally floss) and put on moisturizer you’ll have a beautiful bed to welcome you to sleep.