Have you ever been guilty of throwing in the towel the minute one single aspect of your day goes awry—let’s say a meeting got cancelled or a commute ran long? As tempting as it is to lean into the notion that you can’t recover, the ‘Four Quarters’ method—recently introduced to us on TikTok—is the best way to course-correct.
It works like this: Instead of giving up on an entire day because you burnt your toast at 8 a.m., divide your day into quarters. Maybe you underperform in one quarter, but that doesn’t mean you have to let go of the other three.
According to that viral Tik Tok from Raj Patel, who offers a range of self-improvement advice: You have a morning quarter (5 to 9 a.m.), a late day quarter (10 a.m. to 12 p.m.), an afternoon quarter (12 to 7 p.m.) and an evening quarter (7 p.m. on). If you botch the morning quarter—let’s say with a cold shower or a traffic jam that makes you late—prioritize a reset for the quarters that come next. That could simply mean taking a step back (refreshing your coffee, taking a 10 minute walk) to recalibrate, or something bigger like readjusting your to-do list to make sure you get the most out of your next quarter.
Basically, don’t let your previous emotional baggage weigh you down. After all, it’s not what you did last, but what you do next that matters.