What is the best first task every morning ?

A few years ago, I listened to this exemplary speech of US Navy Admiral - William McRaven.

The idea about making your bed as a first task stayed with me for all these years and I didn't particularly follow the advice. A lot of it also comes from having someone do these little things for you throughout the day (luxuries of living in India).

I always woke up to meeting reminders, getting ready for lectures, tight deadline on presentations and more. Never had a relaxed morning routine all these years. I was particular about one thing though. Whatever happens I want to wake up early in the morning. Earlier the better. My early starts from 4 am. It becomes late when it hits 7 am.

To accomplish early rising and be a part of the 5 am club, I went all the way to have my product design sessions and lectures at 5 am everyday. It worked out well for me and for my students as we got a huge chunk of learning done early morning before the rest of the world woke up. It set the habit for all of us.

Recently I finished a year long diploma and it has been just couple of week since this happened. I just woke up out of habit and didn't know what to do. I remembered McRaven's talk and started making my own bed.

For a change I was sleeping alone (without minions aka kids around me) this week given the renovation happening at home. I had an entire bed room for myself. This is when i was wondering about waking up in the best possible way.

When the alarm was on, I turned off all coziness around me (fans/ac) and turned on all the bright lights. Turned off the alarm post that. Brushed and had a cold water splash on face. Following that my first task of the day was to make my bed. Just experientially testing out the idea for 10 days now. I tucked the bed neatly.  

I got some gyan around how to make bed like a hotel from Youtube. I loved how neatly they arrange the bed. The fitted sheet, the loose sheet, the comforter, the pillows in that order.

I spent exactly 7 mins every morning and made my bed. That was the first task of my day. After a tiring day, I went back to a well done bed which I did it in the morning for me.

  • It did give me a small sense of pride.
  • It did encourage me to do another task of the day well and another. It went on.
  • By doing little things right, I was doing the big things in the day right.
  • Starting the day with task completed gives me hope I can be a little more helpful to some one out there.
  • Now I have used the making bed anchor to write my morning pages.
  • My morning pages anchors me to write this blog to your everyday.
  • When I finish writing this blog, I anchor it to finish my deep work.
  • When I finish my deep work, I get to focus on admin tasks which are least exciting.

One after the other, it flows. With least distractions and utmost presence the tasks flow one after the other. All I had to do was make my bed and get started for the day. To change the world one pixel at a time, I just need to work with headboard first and not the art board is my humble learning from my recent morning routine.

🥂 to first task completion!

Subscribe to Karthi's Blog

Don’t miss out on the latest issues. Sign up now to get access to the library of members-only issues.