One of my frequent frustrations with the concepts of life hacking as it relates predominantly to time and money management is that so often the advice caters to a very specific demographic that doesn't necessarily cater to the unique needs of artists. For example, while I have no doubt that waking up at 5 am and doing daily morning pages and lemon water has numerous benefits, it's also not necessarily realistic for the working actor like me who is, say, on tour with a hectic schedule.
I think it's essential that actors are able to modify their routines to whatever contract they're working on at that time. With that being said, with the sudden abundance of downtime due to quarantine, I've found this system effective to increase self accountability to insure that I'm maintaining full self accountability with my time.
One of the things I strive (and frankly often fail) to do in the morning is to check in with myself about things I'm grateful for and excited for, as well as creating a daily affirmation. Given my propensity to ruminate with the sudden abundance of time in quarantine, these habits help to prevent my mind from going to an overly negative place. Lately I've just had a single affirmation I've been saying daily, "Die to the past every moment," which is a direct quote from a book I've been rereading lately for the umpteenth time "The Power of Now."
The second thing I've found helpful is to pick my top 3 focus/goals for today. I ask myself, "If I could only accomplish 3 things today, what would help me move the needle forward in a meaningful way?" This doesn't necessarily have to be something career related. It could also be something that creates memories or makes progress on long term goals. It could even be tasks you've been procrastinating that would eliminate stress if accomplished. Once I've made this list, I find it's helpful to delineate between the important and immediate tasks, which aren't necessarily interchangeable. I love to also celebrate big wins, happy moments, and lessons learned. For example, when I went to the dentist and had no cavities for the first time in five years, despite this being an ostensibly mundane achievement, I made sure to record it because I wanted to not neglect to celebrate the small wins in my life.
Once I've gone macro, I try to go more micro. I like to use a numbering system to schedule commitments, meetings (if applicable), phone calls and large blocks of time. Obviously abiding my this plan 100 percent isn't typically possible, but at least it provides a good starting place. The first thing I try to do is write out the hours of my workday. Then I plan my whole day. I schedule larger projects first in my day to ensure that they happen. I then plug small time slots with quick to do's (such as mailing a letter, returning an email, etc.). I try to aim for little to no empty space just to challenge myself to see how much I can get done. Most importantly, I've found it essential to include some fun non work items in my schedule such as a walk, nap, etc. When I fail to do these things, my work life flow inevitably suffers. Finally, I like to always keep a notebook on hand to jot down any ideas that pop into my head throughout the day