Actively role-play through an encounter! Articulate the exact steps your character takes, adding in details and color to the story. Get up and act out what your character says and their mannerisms - pretend you are them and faced with the same circumstances. Don't be afraid to be funny, scared, or serious - exaggerate the situation and emotions in order to make a point. What your character plans and says can often be enough for an obvious outcome. We believe GM's should encourage Players to role-play (and possibly grant bonuses to checks - from a minor +1, to Advantage (similar to Superior Luck or Leadership), or automatic success, rather than ONLY rely on the rules of the game to resolve encounters. This also makes for better GM narration. Good role-playing means the characters are engaged dramatically, one of the first steps to a truly memorable experience.
What if I don't have the necessary Ability, skill, trait or power? Remember - part of challenge of role-playing is also acknowledging what you (AND your character - who may not have the experience to make the same informed decisions a player can) cannot do, and working within those limits. Use Feats or Advantage (similar to Superior Luck or Leadership) mechanics to push beyond the limits or rely on raw ability! The GM may allow the use of one of the modifying attributes (as appropriate to the situation) as a target level and require a Full Quality Result in absence of a normal check (assuming the character meets normal requirements). The quality requirement may be less the more role-playing draws out the scene explicitly.
At the heart of it all is role-playing - never let mechanics or rules stand in the way of or superseded good role-playing. Characters should be played using their defined knowledge, mannerisms, and abilities as best they can by both GM and player. Only the GM knows all the factors governing the situation, directing players to apply adjustments, or make them for the players when assessing the resolution.