There is a certain job in life that I have never been able to get my head wrapped around. It seems like so much work that I avoid it, never sure why. Lately I have been hearing some snide remarks from a certain someone that I live with but shall remain nameless. Subtle hints, text messages from siblings relating stories of their screwing up on the job, a colleague I work with, who also shall remain nameless, who lets me know, quite frequently, that he does that job every day. I did try one day this winter and got it done but decided it really wasn’t necessary. So I slipped back into denial.
As I walked through the Minneapolis airport earlier this week I stopped in a bookstore because the title of a book caught my eye. First though, let me explain what I was doing in that airport. During the last winter I spent copious time with a former colleague in completing a project that involved significant travel in Northern Manitoba. As we traveled those highways and byways we commiserated about not having time for a winter vacation. We are both avid golfers and chatted frequently about the upcoming summer and the golf we would enjoy. We even, somewhat tongue in cheek, talked about taking some time to watch a PGA tournament. On a whim we did go and had an enjoyable time watching big name golfers play a premier golf course in Florida.
So let me explain the dreaded job I referred to above. I HATE MAKING THE BED. Aside from the fact that I am not very good at it, although I suspect I would get better if I actually did it, it seems quite redundant. Really. You get up in the morning, you leave the bedroom, and don’t return till the evening when you just jump back in. So why bother. Because someone might see an unmade bed? First of all, why is anyone looking into my bedroom? Secondly, close the door. Way simpler than making the bed. Sorry, I digress.
So the title of the book was Make Your Bed written by Admiral William H. McRaven. Seeing I was in a strange airport and no one would recognize me I grabbed the book just to pique my curiosity. In retrospect I must have been feeling some guilt to even be curious. Below the title was a short sentence that said, “Little things that can change your life. . . and maybe the world. That really caught my eye. Making the bed has the potential to change the world? I read the first paragraph and that was all I needed.
As a self-employed person working out of a home office I sometimes find it difficult to focus on the work I need to get done. If I have a meeting to go to it is simple. You get up, get ready, and go. However if I spend time at home, read office, it can be challenging to focus on a certain task and to finish that or any task. It is quite easy to get distracted by other, more mundane things that need to be done. So the concept outlined in the first sentence of the first paragraph made sense. “If you want to change the world…start off by making your bed.” Simply put, if you start the day by completing that task the rest of the day will follow suit.
So here I am on day 2 of making my bed. It actually feels good. The interesting part of this story is that when that certain person I live with came home from work and went into the bedroom to change she didn’t even notice. It doesn’t matter. For now I will make the bed in the mornings because I do want to change my life and, if possible, the world. Make it a good one.
“Sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step of your life. Tiptoe if you must, but take a step.” Naeem Callaway