How to build a morning routine

As a college student on summer break, I didn’t really have much planned to do or accomplish today. This morning I woke up, brushed my teeth, made a simple to do list, went to the gym for a 30-minute workout, and then came home, where I almost burnt my house down making breakfast. (I was trying a new recipe. Clearly, it did not go well!) If you would like to have a relaxing, non-smoke scented morning, I suggest you get serious about building a morning routine for yourself.

Morning routines are a way to structure your everyday time between waking up and heading to work or school. You may think you don’t need to have a daily morning routine, but if there was a time that you looked back on everything you did in one day and found yourself disappointed, found that you didn’t follow through on what you intended to do, you’ve landed in the right place.

If you’re in school or you have a 9 to 5, your routines are going to look different and they change depending on what season you’re in. Before I give some tips on building a morning routine, here are some benefits:


Benefits to a morning routine

  1. You set the pace for your day.
  2. You prepare yourself to be productive.
  3. You cater to your lifestyle.
  4. You are doing things to improve yourself.


How to make a morning routine

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  • Keep track of your days

One week, spend time tracking your habits. Not just for your morning, but throughout your day. Maybe you wake up and use your phone. Or you like to check your emails at lunch. At night, you rush to journal before bed. Take note of all these things you do, specifically, if they are habits you’d like to change or habits you’d like to add to your life.

  • Look at your schedule

For example, a morning routine before work looks very different than a morning routine before school. Depending on what time your college classes start or what time you need to get into work, you may have time to do a lot of activities or very few. Additionally, if you have specific priorities, like a side hustle, you want to make sure you’re making time for that in your week.

  • Make a list of daily habits

Sample list

  1. I want to drink more water
  2. I want to go to the gym
  3. I want to read more
  4. I want to listen to inspirational podcasts
  5. I want to set goals for each day
  6. I want to sleep more


  • Build an ideal routine with your list


Morning routine before work

If you have a 9 to 5, perhaps, you find you cannot do everything on your list, so you pick what works best for you. You get up at 7 and the first thing you do is drink water and write a list of goals for the day. Then you get ready for work, and on your commute to work, you read a book. On your way back, you listen to a podcast. Afterwards, you head to the gym and drink more water. You shower and get in bed because you’re so tired from your workout.

This routine isn’t all in your morning – but maybe it’s what works for you.


Morning routine before school

For a student like me, you may not have class until 11. You get up at 7, you head to the gym, drink some water and then you shower. After checking your emails for the morning, you sit down and write a list of goals. You check your calendar for the week. You spend some time reading while you eat breakfast. Then when it’s time to head to class, you pop your headphones and listen to a podcast. 


  • Implement habits slowly

It will take time for your routine to look as perfect as you want it. For my first semester, it took the whole first month until I was settled with waking up and having my quiet time, before getting dressed and getting breakfast.

Your morning routine doesn’t have to look like everybody else’s. It shouldn’t. Do what’s best for your lifestyle and your season. 

Get coffee on the go and check your emails on your phone. Go to a hot yoga class and sweat out all your tension. Take a walk around the neighborhood before you get dressed for the day. Brain dump your thought so you aren’t stressed or worried. Whatever you want more of in your life, add it to your morning routine.

Perhaps all you want to do for your morning routine is wake up and sip on coffee before getting ready for the day. And that’s totally okay. As long as it fits in with your best interests.


Signing off, 


Do you structure your morning routine? What habits do you have in your morning routine?

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