Having fun with failure

This is a funny video I found about consumer products that failed spectacularly. I actually remember about six of the products in the video – Olestra, New Coke, McDonalds’ Arch Deluxe, Apple Maps, lawn darts… okay, make that five. Fifty percent isn’t bad!

It’s funny to see why some of these products failed (except for the idiots who killed someone with lawn darts – that… shouldn’t be funny. But it is, a little.) But really, failure is kind of a good thing.

You see, the older we get the more society wants to condition us to avoid, and even look down on, failure. When we fail at something we risk ridicule or punishment. But failure can be cool too; the cool thing about it is that failure narrows the road to success. For any given task, there are a finite number of ways to fail, and also a finite number of ways to succeed. By failing, we increase the odds that we will succeed if we can just change something that doesn’t work and try again. But fear of failure so often holds us back that life becomes textured with this crippling lack of challenge, a stagnant comfort that keeps us from becoming the very best that we can be. Who wants that? Cup of cold, stagnant comfort, anyone?

When that fear of failure – or even the recognition of potential failure – tries to hold us back from what we want, we should not relent; we should evaluate, adjust, and hit it again. Eventually the scales will tip in our favor, and the tireless Warrior Spirit within will carry the day.

Do you remember vegetable Jell-O or disposable underwear? Did you try any of the products in the video? What was your experience with it? Do you know of any other product flops? Tell us anything you want in the comments!

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