After 15 years of complete creative control, I know I sometimes degenerate into perfectionist behavior that doesn’t help the product or the team. Magic happens when you’re faced with real constraints. I’ll miss inserting silly jokes and very deliberate puns wherever I please, but I’m sure my colleagues will prove to be fertile soil for those.
Keep your alternative options outside the deck ready to go in a working file. When people suggest alternatives to the design, be ready to show them what it looks like right away if you have explored something similar. Don’t be afraid to ask whether they think it is a viable direction to pursue when they see what it might actually look like. Often people have an idea in their mind and as soon as they see it they don’t want to pursue it further. This technique helps you move through the process faster.
The first thing you need to be aware of is what you are solving with your designs. What is the problem in a single sentence? How were you made aware of it? What evidence do you have it is worth solving? What is the intended value of solving this problem? How would you expect someone to react if the problem was solved? How valuable is it to solve at this time?