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Brenda Bedmaker™

Friday, January 29, 2021

I've been keeping up with my New Years Resolution perfectly so far. I just picked one small one.

My resolution is to make my bed every morning.

I've done it every day except for the days when my husband did it. Neither of us ever have made our bed, unless we were changing the sheets or had company coming, but he sleeps later than I do every morning, so I think there have been a few times when he felt guilty about it.

I didn't decide to do it because my room looks bigger when I do it, nor because my mother-in-law made an ugly comment to me about it during her last visit (I mean, really. She says it to me instead of her son?). And I didn't decide to do it for the act itself.

I tried to get into the habit, so I could build other habits.

There was that speech back in 2014 from Admiral McRaven where he talks about making your bed. He said (man, I wish SP would allow better formatting in the blogs...I need a block quote):

"Every morning in basic SEAL training, my instructors, who at the time were all Vietnam veterans, would show up in my barracks room and the first thing they would inspect was your bed. If you did it right, the corners would be square, the covers pulled tight, the pillow centered just under the headboard and the extra blanket folded neatly at the foot of the rack — that's Navy talk for bed.

"It was a simple task — mundane at best. But every morning we were required to make our bed to perfection. It seemed a little ridiculous at the time, particularly in light of the fact that were aspiring to be real warriors, tough battle-hardened SEALs, but the wisdom of this simple act has been proven to me many times over.

"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."

So I figured, hey, I'll start making my bed. By doing that, I'll develop my new identity, Brenda Bedmaker™. Brenda Bedmaker™ does all sorts of other things. She plans her food the night before, she only eats that preplanned food. She stretches while watching TV and works on her posture. And Brenda Bedmaker™ is slender and fit.

But that isn't what is happening.

Instead, Brenda Bedmaker™ has become a much, much better housekeeper. Seriously! I actually almost hate to give examples, because really, I'm starting to think that we were criminally gross. But I'll try to give a couple examples that won't have you on the phone to CPS. I've started vacuuming several times a week instead of a few times a month. I clear and wipe down the table everyday. I put away the books and toys every evening. I put away all my potions and lotions when I'm done with them, keeping the bathroom counter clear. I've even noticed that if I clean the kitchen counter and later see a crumb there, I STOP AND PICK UP THE CRUMB.

This is so weird...but I like it. I like it a lot. And it really wasn't an unforeseeable consequence of becoming Brenda Bedmaker™. I just wish that it had spread into a more weight loss-y type snowball. But I guess I can go for another habit and see if that will do.

Meanwhile, my husband's New Years Resolution was to become Floss-Guy™. I don't know if that has had any ripples into other acts of self-care, but I bet it does. I'll ask when he wakes up.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Good luck to both of you on your new habits! emoticon
    39 days ago
    What a wonderful story! It inspired me to clean today and keep the habit up.
    64 days ago
    What a great blog! So happy for you that the bed-making has led to other good habits. I can really identify with the way you used to be, because I'm still there! I love Admiral McRaven's (and now your) philosophy that one small act of discipline first thing in the morning can set the tone of the day, and it brought back memories of my cousin Carter, who joined the Marines after several years of doing menial work in Brunswick, Georgia, such as mopping floors at a seafood shop. The Marines transformed him into a disciplined, ambitious, self-respecting young man and led to a good, stable career after he retired from the military.

    Now it's time for me to go put away the futon. I hope all is well with you in every way.
    66 days ago
    We'll just call you BB from here on in! emoticon
    69 days ago
    This has been my favorite blog all week! I make my bed most mornings, but my NY resolution last year was to do the dishes every night, and I have kept that up. The kitchen is clean in the mornings which I love. And I am generally better about keeping the kitchen clean. It just hasn't spilled over into other areas. Maybe I will try to be a Brenda Bedmaker too.
    71 days ago
  • L*I*T*A*
    emoticon emoticon
    71 days ago
  • LORI-K
    LOVE this blog! Woohoo! So true, making the bed ripples out to so many other areas. WTG!

    I had just mentioned to another Sparker the speech by the Commandant of the Marine Corps for their birthday speech...about making the bed every day. GOOD stuff. I am so happy you shared it here.
    Keep it going. emoticon emoticon emoticon
    I find when I make the bed every day, my game is ON. When I go through spells of wadded up comfort, not so much....
    Thanks for sharing!
    72 days ago
    I make my bed everyday and yes he has made me a better home keeper too. I feel like I benefit SO much from a clean home. Hope to start on my spring cleaning this weekend. Hugs and hope you tell us about your DH. :-)
    72 days ago
    Wow, that's amazing, I loved your blog!
    72 days ago
    I think that is great. I make my bed too, I like the less cluttered look and I put a dog blanket on top for my giant dog to sleep on so the rest of the bed doesn't smell like him ;) BUT they do say that clutter impacts weight-loss, so your new drive/craving for tidiness is bound to pay off. I'm also a daily flosser.. I can't go to bed without doing it now ;)

    72 days ago
    LOL great blog!

    I would almost start to make my bed every morning.... except that I read that if you do, you close in the warmth and dampness that your body created in the bed - and that way you breed bacteria. So it's better to leave the bed open so it can 'dry' and cool off.... Plus bugs, like fleas, for example, don't like light so they are less likely to use your bed as their home if you leave your sheets exposed to light...

    So interesting that you are now a better housekeeper. Maybe that happened because the habit you formed is related to housekeeping? Maybe pick a small food-related habit to start in order to become better at weight loss?
    72 days ago
    Way to go! You made me laugh with "criminally gross." LOL
    72 days ago
  • AKELLY45
    I never made my bed every morning until I met my husband. It is a good way to start your day oddly enough. I am happy for all the changes you are making for yourself. Keep up the good work.(hopefully you're staying away from the pints)
    72 days ago
    My mom used to say the difference between a good housekeeper and a bad housekeeper was just one hour.
    72 days ago
    I admire you for getting a habit going and I can see how it inspired you to do even more! emoticon
    72 days ago
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