A few years back I came across a video of Navy Admiral William McRaven who gave a speech to a group of graduates from the University of Texas. A former student of the university, and now a highly decorated Navy Seal, he had some words of wisdom for the 8,000 students that evening.
‘What starts here changes the World’ is the slogan of UT and was the theme of his speech which had 10 key life lessons to take away. To this day I still draw on these lesson in both my personal and business life. What I love about them is that each one can be drawn upon at different times in your life and during the dark days of the recession one or two of them were never far from my thoughts.
With the arrival of my second child 6 months ago, uninterrupted sleep in our household is a very rare thing. Last weekend saw the moving of rooms as our 3 year old toddler son was given his new ‘big boy’ room and we shipped number 2 out of ours and into his new room. During the big move, which saw garden sheds being cleared out to make way for excess items, rearranging of furniture and the unenviable task of putting together an IKEA toddler bed, one of Adm McRavens lessons popped into my head…… ‘If you want to change the World, start of by making your bed’
“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. By the end of the day, that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed. Making your bed will also reinforce the fact that little things in life matter. If you can’t do the little things right, you will never do the big things right.” – Adm William McRaven
Ok so it may be a little too soon for me to expect my 3 year old to make his own bed, but teaching him important lessons can never start too early. So teach your kids to make their bed, it could be one of the building blocks for them to change the world in the future.