This work week was so lousy that my practicing suffered. By the time I got home I was so tired, distracted and frustrated that I couldn't focus well, or focussed on the wrong things. Yesterday I got home at a reasonable hour, in a reasonable state of mental health, and picked up the viola I'd waited all day to play, and...garbage, still garbage. I have a lot of stuff on my plate - music for both orchestras, plus lesson stuff and a recital piece, so I pushed through a lot of stuff anyway. But it sounded terrible, and I eventually called it a night.
Today's practice started out not much better, but I kept at it (basically all day) and made some progress, I think. Some things that seem to help:
1) doing tone-production exercises with my eyes closed, just listening for the tone I want and then thinking about what it feels like to get that tone.
2) playing passages very slowly, placing each finger carefully
3) playing passages on all soundpoints, no matter whether the piece is supposed to be that way or not.
4) a mid-afternoon espresso
5) a sip of something alcoholic