It’s so tempting to jump to conclusions. If A and B then C, right? If we’ve seen it 100 times before, surely it will be the same on the 101st time. But this is just not the case. Every factor and variable needs to be accounted for.
At work, I often use the power of holding off from conclusions. Each day we get a new puzzle. How can we make this pile of metal, work in coordination, to produce this effect? When we start a new project, it’s tempting to say “Well yes of course we’ll use bolts and nuts. We always use bolts and nuts.” However, that would severely limit the possible routes we could take when designing. Bolts and nuts are great for disassembly and repair, but not great for light weight, hand-size components. Choosing bolts and nuts prematurely would lock us into a design that required big beefy structures. We would either have to suffer with a design we don’t like, or backtrack and redesign the whole thing based on different fasteners.
The same applies for life. If you need a new car, don’t assume that American cars have better quality, that will lock you into a brand that might be more expensive. If you need a new computer mouse, don’t assume that more DPI will give you better accuracy, especially until you understand what DPI is. If you need to get in better shape, don’t assume that exercise is enough, even though most people who are fit, do indeed exercise.
The bottom line is that, the more factors you consider, the better your results will be.