Looking to create a morning routine that’s best for you as a college student?

Then, you’ve come to the right place.

When you’re a student, it’s super important to make a daily routine that works for you. After all, you’re going to be bogged down by lots of distractions, such as:

  • You’re not sure if you completed all your assignments (or even submitted them) on time
  • You stayed up late last night to study for an exam, so you need to wake up and get yourself into a “productive” mood
  • You’re always worried about making or maintaining a social life
  • You have a club, a side job or an internship that takes up a huge amount of your time

With all of these stuff happening it your life, it can get overwhelming. You may even think, “Why should I create a morning routine when I’m a busy and tired college student?”

And you know what? I totally get what you mean.

When I was in college, I was always swamped with school work and my online jobs — and it’s exactly the reason why I needed a productive morning routine to help me.

Life begins each morning. So make the most of your mornings every day!

Through years of experience, I’ve found the best tips you can add to your morning routine to make sure you’ll want to get out of bed in the morning. Every single day.

Ready to create your own perfect morning routine?

Let’s dive in below.

Best College Morning Routine Ideas

1. Start using a “sunrise” alarm clock — no snooze!

If you’re like me who likes to press the “snooze” button, chances are you’re looking for effective tips you can add to your daily morning routine to make sure you wake up the moment your alarm clock rings.

Pro-tip: Never use your phone as your alarm clock.

That’s because when your phone’s alarm clock rings, it’s super easy to just press “snooze” or wake up and check social media for a while before sleeping again. (Guilty as charged!)


Also, a snooze button is the number 1 enemy of a productive morning routine.

Every time you press “snooze”, it’s like saying, “Let me sleep again because I don’t like waking up”. And this is a hard habit to have, because the more you snooze, the less time you have to prepare for class!

The solution? It’s this wake up light sunrise alarm clock I found on Amazon.

This alarm clock is such a life-changer, you guys.

It’s super helpful, especially for those winter months when you really have to get up earlier — even before a sunrise!

That’s because it stimulates the sun rising in your own room, so you can wake up more naturally rather than to a blaring honk from a traditional alarm clock. I set the alarm to start the light function about 30 minutes before I want my alarm to go off, so I have plenty of time being exposed to it.

I loved it the first time I used it, because it’s nice being gradually woken up by this alarm clock’s light. It is far more gentle than an abrupt alarm. 🙂

Best part? The alarm itself has lots of natural sounds to choose from to wake you up, like songbirds, ocean waves & seagulls, splashing creek and windchimes. Personally, I appreciated the ocean waves because it’s like I’m waking up from my very own beach house. (A girl can dream!)

So far, this alarm clock has been one of the best purchases of my life. I’ll never go back to using my phone as an alarm clock again.

2. Get some light, splash water on your face and drink a glass of water

After waking up from your alarm, the next step in your morning routine is to stand up and get even more light. You can turn on your lights or open your curtains in your room if you have them.

It helps if you get access to white light during the day, since it can boost your alertness and mood, allowing you to stay awake and ready to tackle your day.

Then, splash some water on your face so your body can adjust and really feel like you’ve woken up. Some people use lukewarm water, but I use cold water to really wake up my body and make me not want to sleep anymore.

Finally, drink a whole glass of water. It sounds weird, but trust me.

After waking up, your body’s dehydrated. And when you’re dehydrated, you’re more likely to get tired and refuse to wake up. That’s why drinking a full glass of water helps you become more alert.

Personally, we have a hydro flask like this on our nightstand to keep us hydrated. Do what works for you: the important thing is you drink some water ASAP once you wake up.

3. Make coffee or tea

Of course, your morning routine for college students wouldn’t be complete if you didn’t have your favorite drink on it, right?

Think of it as your reward — your little sweet treat that you look forward to drinking every time you wake up on time. A yummy handcrafted coffee or tea motivates you to wake up earlier so you’d have enough time to make it and savor it. 🙂

Plus, I find that whenever I drink coffee, I tend to pay more attention in class.

If you live in a dorm, you can make great-tasting coffee with the Cuisinart 4-cup coffeemaker. My favorite thing about it is it  works well and takes up less counter-top space than larger coffeemakers, so it’s perfect for small spaces.

Also, the burner turns off automatically after 30 minutes so it’s a nice safety feature, especially if you’re forgetful like me.

For days when I prefer a cup of tea after waking up, I got this wood pattern handle teapot from Amazon. It looks so pretty and aesthetic that I just had to get it!

4. Consume inspirational content

While my coffee is brewing (or my tea is steeping), I like to search for inspirational content on my phone.

This way, I can enjoy my drink while listening to a podcast or watching a motivational video.

If you love learning about productivity or starting your own side hustle, I’d recommend watching the Marie Forleo show on YouTube. One of my favorite episodes is titled “Feeling Behind in Your Life? Watch This”. Check it out on YouTube to see why.

Another podcast I love listening to is the Yes We Gotchu podcast. Their messaging is all about how to love yourself and live the life you love, so it’s one of my favorites. I feel positive about seizing my day after listening to them.

You can also listen to your favorite music while drinking your beverage of choice. No idea which artist to listen to? BTS is always a good idea. 🙂

5. Eat breakfast

I used to fast for a long time, so eating breakfast wasn’t included in my morning routine.

But I realized that whenever I skipped breakfast, I get hyperacidity and stomach pain — which are super painful and distracting when you’re trying to pay attention to class.

That’s why adding “breakfast” to your morning routine can be helpful. It can give you the energy boost you need to tackle your day. Plus, since you won’t be starving, you’ll be more productive and more receptive to studying.

Now, I’m not saying you need to whip up a complicated breakfast every morning. You can try quick and easy breakfast ideas such as:

  • Instant pot oatmeal: old fashioned oats, milk, and water, and only cooks for 3 minutes
  • Yogurt with fruit or granola: Greek yogurt, bananas and your favorite berry
  • Bagel with cream cheese
  • Scrambled eggs: whisk eggs with a little milk and fry them up in a skillet
  • Bananas and peanut butter (or Nutella)

6. Express your creativity

The last major thing I do before completely ending my daily morning routine is to have an outlet for my creativity.

For example, some friends of mine love to do their bullet journals in the morning.

Others try out doodling or painting, since they feel better aligned this way.

For me, I like to think that I do my best writing in the morning, when I have plenty of time and I’m not feeling rushed. Actually, spending time to write is important for me — that’s why I make sure to regularly follow the routine that I’ve established for myself.

After all, it’s all about making time for what matters to you, right?

Other Productive Ideas For Your Morning Routine

  • Read a self-help or fiction book
  • Visualize while looking at your vision board
  • Work out for 10 minutes
  • Declare your affirmations
  • Meditate

Final Thoughts on Your Daily Routine

Looking back at our list, you can see that it only takes an hour (or less!) to actually make it happen.

And that’s what makes it so easy to establish in your own life.

Since you won’t need to spend a lot of time on it, you can slowly but surely incorporate this morning routine into your daily life so you can live productively and with more intention.

Try out waking up more naturally first, and once you’ve mastered that, you can add the other productive tasks after.

I’d love to hear from you: what’s your favorite thing to add to your morning routine for college students?

Let me know in the comments below. 🙂

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