Someone wrote: "Figuring out what to practice and how is a MAJOR challenge."
I think you can approach it like you would choosing a martial art. You might pick several months to completely immerse yourself in the practice of the various grappling [judo, wrestling, jiu jitsu, aikido] and striking [boxing, muay tai, kenpo, kung fu] arts against a similar weight and competent competitor of another art.
Likewise. when choosing a Buddhist spiritual path, you might spend one month chanting the Nembutsu, one month performing Zen meditation, another performing Tibetian and Theravadan meditation, and one month chanting the Daimoku of the Lotus Sutra, lets say for an hour of concentrated effort each day.
There is an important difference however, in both investigative approaches. Mixed Martial Arts is patently a superior fighting method than any one martial art while the superiority of a mixed Buddhist practice is unproven, each Buddhist school claiming superiority as a path to Pure and Perfect Enlightenment. Were this true [which I believe is true in the case of the Lotus Sutra] even were one proficient in many methods, it would be as if a master mixed martial artist flyweight of 125 lbs were to take on a 300lb Muay Thai or Jiu Jitsu master who was at least familiar with the various martial arts. If, as many schools teach, the concept of attaining Buddhahood in this very body is true and if it is true that one path is superior than the others in reaching that goal, you should be able to figure out which path to follow [what to practice] in order to attain Buddhahood in this very life. Of course, it would be better if you were to immediately take up the Lotus Sutra on my advice but this is a possible alternative way to arrive at the truth for a select few. Nichiren was one such example. I know several people who investigated various Buddhist faiths and practices and who have come to the conclusion that the Lotus Sutra is superior.