Length: 144 pages
Audiobook Length: 1 hour and 53 minutes
First Published: 2017
In 2014, retired Navy Admiral William H. McRaven gave a commencement address at the University of Texas at Austin listing ten lessons he learned as a Navy SEAL that helped him overcome challenges. Now expanded into a small book, McRaven gives timeless advice to inspire readers even during their darkest moments.
Using anecdotes from his Navy SEAL training, McRaven’s inspiring little book gives examples of overcoming obstacles – enduring, finding joy, accepting unfairness, etc. By the nature of such books, some readers will find Make Your Bed awe-inspiring and life-changing and others will see it as inspirational, but forgettable. Coming in at under 2 hours, the audiobook version felt more like a long podcast than a book and is definitely worth a read.
If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.
On May 17, 2014, Admiral William H. McRaven addressed the graduating class of the University of Texas at Austin on their Commencement day. Taking inspiration from the university’s slogan, “What starts here changes the world,” he shared the ten principles he learned during Navy Seal training that helped him overcome challenges not only in his training and long Naval career, but also throughout his life; and he explained how anyone can use these basic lessons to change themselves-and the world-for the better.
Admiral McRaven’s original speech went viral with over 10 million views. Building on the core tenets laid out in his speech, McRaven now recounts tales from his own life and from those of people he encountered during his military service who dealt with hardship and made tough decisions with determination, compassion, honor, and courage. Told with great humility and optimism, this timeless book provides simple wisdom, practical advice, and words of encouragement that will inspire readers to achieve more, even in life’s darkest moments.
About William H. McRaven
Admiral William H. McRaven is a retired US Navy Admiral at the author of Make Your Bed, The Wisdom of the Bullfrog, and Sea Stories. McRaven served as a Navy SEAL for thirty-seven years, eventually serving as Commander of all U.S. Special Operations Forces. After retirement, he was the Chancellor of the University of Texas System from 2015 to 2018. McRaven currently lives in Austin, Texas.