Make Your Bed

Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life…And Maybe the World by Admiral William H. McRaven, (Grand Central Publishing, 2017, 144 pages)

Start your day by making your bed. This simple task has the potential to change your life and the world.

Make Your Bed gives us ten key principles to live a productive and successful life. The book is for anyone in any stage of life. What started as a commencement speech by Admiral McRaven at the University of Texas in 2014 led to this book on the themes of resilience and determination. McRaven’s principles includes stories of his personal experiences, as well as the those from other Navy SEALs. Each are explained in detail and provide real life applications. McRaven’s key principle is “Never, ever give up.” He links this principle to the other principles throughout the book. If you keep pushing and never give up, you can conquer any obstacle. A few key takeaways from the principles can have a big impact on your life. 

Key Takeaways
  1. Make your bed every morning. Start your day with the simple task of making your bed. This task motivates you to be productive throughout the rest of the day. If you cannot complete a simple task like this, you can’t expect to complete bigger and more important tasks. 
  2. Don’t be afraid to take a risk. Sometimes you have to take risks to overcome the obstacles–whether it’s fear, or failure. This experience provide lessons to use in the future. Overcoming obstacles could be the key to success.
  3. Never ring the bell. No matter how tough life gets. No matter what obstacle is in the way. No matter who says you can’t do it. You will want to quit many times, when you think you aren’t strong enough or smart enough. Tell yourself you can do it. Don’t quit. Do not ring the bell. 
  4. Be your best, even if it’s tough. Everyone experiences rough times in life. It is inevitable. The way we conduct ourselves through these times will show how resilient and strong we are. The best way to move forward is to dig into your inner self and be the best version of yourself you can be. Doing this will make you better on the other side.
Final Thoughts

Few people have the privilege of earning the title of a Navy SEAL. McRaven’s aren’t just for military leaders, or the SEALs, or an Olympic athlete, they are for everyone to live by and for the people who we interact with every day. By keeping a positive outlook on life, and never, ever giving up, you can and will be successful. 

To change your life, and potentially the world, start your day by making your bed.


This review is provided by Sydney Balmer who is on active duty in the Navy until July and on a Skillbridge Internship with DODReads. She hopes to join the FBI after completing her bachelors degree. Her favorite pastimes are reading, hiking, visiting Disney World, and gaming. She can be reached at: /https://www.linkedin.com/in/sydney-balmer-116737167/

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