The Merits of Failure

//The Merits of Failure

Danger Man was the greatest failure of my life.

Danger Man de la Mancha(And in a life as adventurous as mine, that’s really saying something.)

This week I entered the Don Quixote Windmill Contest, a video competition for a $10,000 prize.

The hosts of the competition are looking for the Best Bad Idea.

The purpose of the Quixote’s Windmill Prize
is to encourage the takers of chances, the facers of giants, the riders on the arms of windmills.

Help me win this contest!

Please like and share this video on Youtube:

Diving deeply back into this project, I must admit, was embarrassing.

I had no idea what I was doing. It was ballsy, and courageous, and tacky, and corny, and some of the most fun I have ever had.

But you know what?

I don’t mind failing.

Failing is actually the best way for me to learn something.

By doing something badly, I can examine the remnants of my failure like an ancient priest of old, peering into the guts of a slaughtered animal, looking for truth within the ashes.

ebook_250wWhen I finished the Danger Man project, my introspection resulted in my first ebook.

I had never written an ebook before.

I didn’t know what I was doing.

But I did it anyway.

The Unexpected Side-Effects of Failing

I used to sell car insurance for a living. I wore a tie to work, I spent 50 hours a week in a cubicle, and I had was miserable; except for this one hour every day, where I could practice parkour during my lunch break, and finally feel free.

Danger Man was a side-effect; as I started climbing buildings and bridges, I needed a way to protect myself from trespassing charges.

From a mask to a costume is a very short leap.

My pipe dream was to craft some new job-type thing out of Danger Man, through Superhero Themed Guerilla Marketing, which had never been done before, and I could never get to work.

(With one notable exception.)

While I totally failed at what I set out to do, I still achieved my goal of leaving my day job, just in a very unexpected manner.

Almost on a whim, I made a website to hold my ebook.

I had never made a website before.

And I did it anyway.

Then, the light bulb went off: it’s a lot easier for me to get people to pay me for websites than for scavenger hunts.

People are already paying for websites. And with just a few resources, I created a new business.

With Pura Vida MultiMedia, I make websites, videos, and ebooks for clients all over the world.

I was able to leave my job selling car insurance, all because I did something I had no business doing; I tried something new; I failed.

And from that failure, I launched off of the unexpected side effect, to achieve my goal anyway.



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By | 2016-12-26T14:00:15+12:00 March 25th, 2014|Adventure|

About the Author:

Father of 3. WordPress website designer. Creative director @ Stellar Platforms. Writer, multimedia producer, digital marketer, and retired superhero.

No Comments

  1. Adam Dunlap March 25, 2014 at 2:20 pm - Reply

    What a great failure. The secret is, it wasn’t a failure at all. It led you to your destiny 🙂

    • Caelan Huntress March 26, 2014 at 1:34 pm - Reply

      The only way to get to your destiny is through failure.

      It’s a shame we don’t teach that, and applaud failures as much as the successes in our culture. I think we would have more people achieving their destiny if we did.

  2. […] So I said yes, because if I did not succeed, at least I knew it would be a fun way to fail. […]

  3. […] an ebook, he has a fantastic launch strategy, that has been learned by failing really big. (Failure turns into a recurring theme, with independent entrepreneurs, I am relieved to […]

  4. Caelan Huntress April 24, 2014 at 4:29 pm - Reply

    Update: I did not win this contest. This guy did ->

  5. […] I would have avoided this detour, had I been the winner of the $10,000 cash prize for the Don Quixote Windmill Contest. […]

  6. […] down poverty lane, it was a progression in my experiment of radical honesty. First I revealed my superheroic failure, then the onstage critique of my dysfunctional newsletter, and finally I revealed that I have […]

  7. […] is the exercise where I failed fast. I have a close relationship with failure, because I do not fear it. When I fail big and quickly, I can learn things very […]

  8. […] to try implementing this concept on a city-wide basis, and although the project spectacularly failed, I was able to work with the idea enough that I was finally able to make a functional treasure […]

  9. […] keeping to this habit of gratitude, my life began to rapidly change. I became a superhero. I moved to Costa Rica. I changed careers, leaving the office safari where I had lived and worked […]

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