Even after doing decent enough scheduling of your day, there are things that just don't end up happening unless you switch to a better framework. Of course in an ideal world, you don't need anything other than interest and effort. But it's very noisy out here, so we need frameworks to filter, focus and deliver.
In hindsight, my earlier attempts1 have been pretty myopic. Long term goals are by design hard to fit in a checklist but mid term ones can be covered as completely as short term ones. I have recently started to plan my weeks around monthly targets, each under one of the four major objectives that I have in mind, taking a page from the OKR framework. Things that don't push the monthly targets are not supposed to be touched.
An important side-effect of writing down mid term goals is better visibility of long term possibilities in various threads that I am touching at the moment. A month is still pretty less time to be fair. You can pick up a certain thing and totally forget about it in the next month. What I am trying to do is to setup pipelines that finish in overlapping semesters, and see what comes out.
A few are mentioned in this journal