Being aware that you need a good headline is one thing, writing a good one is another. I spend almost as much time trying to get a good headline as I do writing some articles.
Your advice is great. I will start thinking in that direction: “streamlining your idea, compressing it, fitting the entire arc of your message into a small handful of words…”
p.s. I ran 24 titles through the Headline Analyzer after this story and the final version was far better than the original.