8 Things To Do Before 8AM

I’ve just about settled my morning routine. Now that I have to be a real person and go to work everyday (man do I miss only having to get up for 11am lectures), I’ve started out on a quest to become more of a morning person.I’m trying to get up at the same time every day, and not press snooze – it’s a real struggle. Here are the 8 things I’ve added to, or altered in, my morning routine, which I’ve found have really helped.



It’s good for you. It will make you feel better. It takes 10 seconds. It’s that simple.*

*I don’t really eat (I do quite often have a banana on the bus though) before I leave on weekdays because I like to take advantage of the breakfast at work, so this is especially important then.


This one is less about skin care and more about doing something that makes me feel good. Because I’m an evening shower person (TMI?), I find that washing my face really refreshes and wakes me up in the morning. It’s also something I really enjoy. I like having a skincare routine I can work through. A little morning pampering goes a long way, so recently I’ve been taking my time and enjoying the process. Skincare could easily be replaced by an indulgent breakfast, straightening your hair, or even something like reading the paper.


I would love to say I’m someone who goes for a 5 mile run every morning, I’m not. I’m never going to be one of those people either. Instead I start my morning with a short series of pilates-esque stretches and low impact exercises. Getting your body moving in the morning, particularly if you’re going to be sitting at a desk all day, really helps you wake up and get your blood flowing so you’re able to focus all day long.


This might seem like a given, and on weekdays it is, but I know that the urge to lounge around in pyjamas on the weekend is very real and very strong. I don’t know about anyone else, but for me the longer I stay in my pjs the harder it is to get out of them and get going. So theoretically, the quicker you get dressed and ready for the day the easier it is to start working and being productive. Having tested this hypothesis for quite a while now, I feel quite confident in suggesting it holds in real life as well as theory.


Every evening I like to set out my bullet journal for the next day. Even though its already been written out I like to review my to do list and any events, and make sure I have my plan for the day fresh in my mind. It’s hard to be productive if you don’t know what you’re meant to be doing.


I’ve only started meditating recently but I’ve found it’s really helped me manage my anxiety and be more productive. Taking 5 minutes for yourself to start your day right can make a world of difference. I would recommend using a meditation app like Calm. These usually have a variety of guided sessions, but on a morning I find using the simple self guided sessions (especially if I’m a bit pressed for time) the best for working on my own individual focus.


The first thing I used to do after I’d opened my eyes was check my email. This was a mistake. It made my morning about work, about Facebook notifications, about junk I didn’t want to see. By delaying checking my phone until I’ve completed the rest of my morning routine, I’m able to reclaim a little bit of time for myself and only start work when I’m ready and at my best. It’s a tiny life change that has made a huge difference, and I’d highly recommend it to anyone. I’ve even replaced my phone alarm with a good old fashioned alarm clock, to reduce the urge to scroll.


This is probably the most important thing on this list. I’m not someone who believes that positive thinking is the key to changing the world, in fact I’m quite skeptical that you can think yourself happy. However, I’ve been trying really hard to start the day thinking about what I can look forward to. By getting excited about what lies ahead for the day, I’ve found I start to enjoy it more. If you’re struggling with getting excited for your day try and schedule in something fun or wear something that makes you feel good.

That’s it. I’m always looking for ways to start the day a bit better, do you have any advice or morning hacks that I should be trying out?



    • natalieharney@yahoo.co.uk
      October 3, 2016 / 7:37 pm

      Glad you liked them Jen! Hopefully you can try some out tomorrow!

  1. October 4, 2016 / 4:20 am

    I love the last tip – decide to have a good day. It’s definitely what you make it! Such a great post and a great blog!


    • natalieharney@yahoo.co.uk
      October 4, 2016 / 8:58 am

      Thanks Lena, a day really is what you make of it!

  2. October 4, 2016 / 11:32 pm

    The first thing I do is brush my teeth – the minty taste kind of wakes me up. Then I have cereal with some fruit so I’m not hungry for several hours. I definitely agree about not checking the phone first thing – gives me breathing room!

    • natalieharney@yahoo.co.uk
      October 5, 2016 / 2:46 pm

      Brushing your teeth is a great shout (I promise I do brush mine on a morning), it’s just so nice to feel fresh and ready for the day

  3. October 6, 2016 / 11:23 pm

    Love this post, and your writing style in general.

    I’m a recently converted morning bed-maker. I was never convinced that making my bed would actually change the feel of my mornings, but it does! Totally makes me feel like I have my life more than I actually do. 🙂

    • natalieharney@yahoo.co.uk
      October 7, 2016 / 9:16 am

      Thanks Kim! You’re right making your bed has such a big impact on whether or not you feel like you’ve got your life together 🙂

  4. October 27, 2016 / 3:30 pm

    I like your morning routine. I try to do pretty much the same things. I found a yoga routine (Gentle Morning Yoga) and it’s amazing because you literally spend 15 minutes laying down, so it’s like being in bed, but you’re actually doing “yoga” 😉

    p.s. I just discovered you over on The Every Girl. You have a nice site 🙂

    • natalieharney@yahoo.co.uk
      October 27, 2016 / 3:53 pm

      That yoga routine sounds amazing! Definitely going to look it up, I’ve been so lazy recenty so that sounds perfect – thanks for letting me know

  5. October 28, 2016 / 12:56 am

    I’d love to do all of these things but realistically I’d hate to do them all before 8am, I go to sleep around 2am because I’m such a night owl! I would like to try and incorporate some meditation into my routine though, everyone who regularly meditates seem to love it!


    • natalieharney@yahoo.co.uk
      October 28, 2016 / 11:01 am

      That’s very fair! I definitely wouldn’t be getting up so early if I didn’t have to get to work so early

  6. November 22, 2016 / 9:18 pm

    Thanks for sharing these tips! I usually see the same ones over and over, but you had some really great ones I have never seen before. It’s actually never crossed my mind to get dressed first. It’s usually the last thing I do before I head out the door, so I’ll have to try that one!

    xo, Taylor

    • natalieharney@yahoo.co.uk
      November 22, 2016 / 10:19 pm

      For some reason it always makes me feel more awake, and I can do the bits after a little bit quicker. I do have to brush my teeth before I get dressed still though – there have been too many toothpaste incidents!

  7. December 17, 2016 / 9:18 pm

    I’m not a morning person but I do find that the energy that you start the day with carries throughout. These are all excellent tips.

    • Natalie
      December 18, 2016 / 2:19 pm

      I’m 100% not a morning person either, but I’m trying to make the most of having to get up early to start the day off well

    • Natalie
      January 19, 2017 / 10:49 pm

      It really does make a difference, but it’s 100% still something I’m working on and don’t always manage to do.

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