Worse first

A heuristic that has worked more times than I am comfortable with: Sometimes, you have to make it worse before it can get better.

If you are on the hill of "good enough", then anywhere down from that hill is not as good. Staying on the hill, we avoid the valleys.

Sometimes, it has to get worse first: Going into the noisy valley and finding the depths.

From there you can find a mountain to start climbing: Ending up higher, clearer, and quieter.