My Iced Coffee Morning Routine

Phase 1: Observe


Every morning, after I roll out of bed at approximately 8:30, I head to the kitchen to brew a fresh cup of coffee. While I enjoy both hot and iced coffee, I have been enjoying refreshing iced coffee during the last couple of warm months. I began to drink coffee, specifically iced coffee, at the age of 17. I use coffee as a source of energy, but I also like to drink it just for pleasure.

List of materials

  • Two tumblers
  • One straw
  • Ninja coffee maker (with milk frother attachment)
  • Dunkin coffee grounds
  • Monin french vanilla syrup
  • Ice cubes
  • 1% milk

The method

I took the majority of the pictures on my own using my iPhone XR. I also had my mother, Kristen Dixon, take a few pictures.

The process


My morning iced coffee routine has been the exact same, every morning, for the past couple of months. I didn’t realize how repetitive my iced coffee routine is until I documented my process for this project. I roll out of bed, head to the kitchen, and start this 7 minute routine. I prep the coffee maker, start the cold brew, prep the milk mixture, and combine the ingredients. The results? A delicious sweet drink. I usually begin the process very tired, but making my coffee excites me. As I move around the kitchen, I begin to wake up and I get excited for the end product. By the time my coffee is done, I am ready to drink it and start my day!

Synthesising the flow into a journey map.

This journey map evaluates the deep emotions and variations in my extensive iced coffee morning routine.

Phase ii: expand / contract

After completing research on my iced coffee morning routine, I realized how much joy and satisfaction the task brings me. I am interested in nudging a factor in the coffee making process that brings me these feeling, and see what effect it has on my mood.


First, I brainstormed the different variables I could manipulate in my routine on sticky notes and arranged them on a scale. The top of the scale is labeled “how interesting”, and the left side is labeled “level of impact”. After I arranged the sticky notes, I grouped similar sticky notes together into three categories:

  1. incorporating technology
  2. changing my mindset

The Concept: Journaling before starting coffee routine

The Test

For this nudge, I simply woke up and reached for my journal. I opened up to a new page and started writing down my thoughts. I set a timer for 30 minutes, but actually finished in 15. After journaling, I jumped into my coffee routine, as described in phase i.

I tracked my mood throughout the nudge and routine using the scale above.

The conclusion:

My coffee routine isn’t the only activity that brings me joy in the morning. By adding journaling into the routine, I was able to take a moment to pause before jumping straight into my extensive coffee routine.

I created a new journey map to break down the journaling activity even further.

Phase iii


I was born and raised in America, so I focused my research on America’s “coffee culture”. I want to investigate how coffee became a staple in our daily routines, and how coffee is prepared compared to other countries around the world.

  • The “second wave”- Starbucks paved the way with their delicious craft drinks
  • The “third wave”- A “refinement of…. Starbucks”- Finally, coffee has become a craft. A “cheap luxury”. There is more attention to the aesthetic, overall experience, and the roast.
  • “coffee shops are a mandatory stop on the way home, with their warm atmosphere, the welcoming baristas, the pastries and the option to customize your order are what keep attracting customers”

Speculative Ideation

In my own routine, nudge, and research, I noticed a common theme of crafting an aesthetic experience. Many articles that I read during the research phase noted the importance of aesthetics to Americans. The “warm atmosphere (of coffee shops), the welcoming baristas, the pastries… are what keep attracting customers” (The influence of millennials article).

Developing a Storyboard

First, I created titles to help me organize my ideas and storyboard. I came up with the titles and any additional details that were needed.

  • Select mini journal- Near the pick up counter, there are shelves filled with complimentary journals and/or journaling packets. The customer can choose a journal that reflects what he or she needs to focus on for the day.
  • Journal + Coffee!- Finally, after all of the materials are gathered, the coffee and journaling process can be enjoyed. This is a moment of reflection and meditation.

Closing Thoughts

Through this blog, I have been able to analyze the role coffee plays in my life. After conducting research on American coffee culture, I have discovered that customization and aesthetics are essential to create the ultimately coffee experience. I value both of these characteristics in my daily routine.