Making the bed every morning doesn't seem like it has much to do with our more ambitious goals, like meditating twice daily or learning Mandarin. But it's an example of a "keystone habit"—along with regular family dinners and daily exercise—that sets in motion other good habits, explains Charles Duhigg in his book The Power of Habit
. (Bed-making, he writes, is "correlated with better productivity, a greater sense of well-being and stronger skills at sticking with a budget.") The point is that strategic "small wins" strengthen something you really need when you want to change for the better: willpower
. First, conquer the bed; next, the world.