Failure And Painful Problems - It's Time To Act

Failure And Painful Problems – It’s Time To Act

Failure doesn’t suck. No one wants to see others suffer, and we certainly don’t want to experience it, but that’s how we grow and learn. How many times have you heard, “Find the pain points” when it comes to successful business? Ad nauseam, right?

In this post, I’ll give one quick and personal story of failing to benefit from failure. How I recognized “the pain point” and sat on my hands, just to watch someone else solve the problem and profit from the fix. Curious? Read on Holmes, I’m gonna get personal here.

We know how I love to tell a story so here we go…

Failing to Benefit From Failure – A True Story

My pallet jacks

My pallet jacks

I’ve been a truck driver for over thirty years. For the last 16 years, I’ve been a local driver, mostly with a 48-foot trailer.

As a local driver, I have to use a pallet jack to move pallets (skids) of freight around. I found the pain point for drivers, the problem we faced daily, almost from day one. Not all pallets (skids) are created equal; they’re different widths, lengths, and even materials.

I am required to purchase my pallet jack (about $345 each), and I’ve had many. My first pallet jack was pretty much the standard size and works for most pallets. Eventually, I decided to purchase a narrower jack because 1,000+ pound narrow pallets are common, and the standard size just doesn’t work.

So for years, and I mean years, I told my buddy about a great idea that would fix the problem. It was an adjustable pallet jack. I envisioned a hand crank that would move the forks (legs) in and out so it would fit any size pallet.

Every local driver carrying two pallet jacks around would only need one if it were adjustable.

What stopped me from making the idea mine? Well, to start, I needed a patent. That can be an expensive prospect but shouldn’t be a huge barrier. Oh, and a prototype, a manufacturer, a budget, etc.. Don’t let lame excuses and tiny barriers stop your greatness.

I’m not a psychiatrist, but I am a blogger and I think we can associate a little fear of success to the equation. The fear of failure as well. Now I sound pretty smart, right? lol

Either way, around ten years after my brilliant idea, I found the exact design sitting in a warehouse with the same Brand as the pallet jack I was using every day. Ouch, that left a mark!

The Lesson Learned – Hopefully

It’s a real eye-opener to realize you sat on your hands so long that you potentially lost big financially. If you see a problem and can think of a solution, do yourself a huge favor and don’t sit on your hands and wonder if it’s a good idea; get to work or someone else will.

That one idea might not have made me rich. It might not have panned out at all, but you know what? If I had acted on the idea, win or lose, I wouldn’t be sitting around wondering “what if“.

We owe it to others to fix the problem as well. We’ve all seen that guy complaining about everything under the sun but won’t lift a finger to do anything about it. Don’t be that person – fix it.

It’s okay to profit from your help. If I need a ride to work, maybe you give me a ride and don’t really expect payment. No big deal, we’re friends, right? But if I invent Uber, I want paid! Seriously, get paid for your contributions.

Look For Problems To Enjoy Solve?

How many pallet jack problems can one actually stumble upon in a lifetime? Well, at least, one if you pay attention but I believe there are many problems just waiting to be solved if you deliberately seek them out.

Ask others within your niche what problems they face every day.

NoteAs a side note (rant), can we agree that it’s time to stop asking people, “What are you struggling with?” It’s a great question, but the problem is that a very popular marketer mentioned that single sentence, and it took off like wildfire – word for word:

What ▹ Are ▹ You ▹ Struggling ▹ With?

Seriously, we can be a little more unique than just regurgitating someone else’s questions, can’t we? Sure we can.


The next time you feel like screaming because of the stupidity of a product or service, put on a smile and think of much better things would be if you held those reins. And then see if you have a shot at those very reins.

Ask yourself:

☑ Can this be done easier?

☑ Should this be faster?

☑ Could this be cheaper?

☑ How would you make this better?

☑ Why is this such a pain in the butt?

Think About it

How many of us knew deep inside there was a need for a keyword research tool? What about a hashtag evaluation tool? Social automation? Content sharing methods?

All we have to do is look, recognize and act.  We’ll either win or fail. That’s a win-win if I have ever seen one. ~Brian D. Hawkins

Wrapping up

That’s all I got. That’s my single mistake. lol Just joking, but it was a big one, in my mind. What kind of problems are you striving to fix? Can you see how it is selfish not to fix it? Can you see how you should be rewarded for fixing problems? I’d love your comments, questions, and stories.

Hey, did I tell you I invented cheese sticks? True story. 😉

About Brian Hawkins

Blogging superhero by day and internet super villain by night. Blogger, future online millionaire and an all around great guy.


  1. I remember when you invented the (deep fried) cheese sticks! I think of you every time I have some. 🙂

  2. Thanks Bro, much appreciated. 🙂

  3. Daniel Ndukwu says

    Contains no Gluten… that was funny. Anyways, Great post. sitting around and waiting for only God knows what because you may win or lose. After all we miss 100% of the shots we didntt take. That true story was inspiring. Thanks for the post.

  4. I appreciate that Daniel. Yep, we miss every shot we don’t take. 🙂

  5. This is good topic for me at this time, Brian. And thanks for sharing!

    I have TONS of ideas and people are always telling me to focus on one, which makes sense. However, I’ve had some of the ideas for years but they weren’t done because of timing. For example, I had a game idea about five years ago but there’s an event coming where I’m going to crank it out.

    Another project I’m working on is a book on Chicago’s roller skating history. I started researching in 2009 and have done nothing until this year. I only started because someone advised me to do presentations on the topic and I have two PAID presentations coming up. Here’s there thing. There is NO book written on this topic and if I don’t do it, someone else will get the glory even though I have tons of research and a 100-page draft right now. That would not be cool.

    As I type this, I really need to thank you for this as it has added fire to my desire to complete these two things ASAP.

  6. Wow, that’s really exciting Marcie. They say timing is everything but it can quickly pass us by. It sounds like you have a nice window right now, especially with so much work already invested. I feel good about 2016. 🙂

    On the other side, back in the early nineties a friend and I worked hard on a local grocery delivery service. It didn’t take off and we tossed in the towel after far too much time and money. I think we were too early.

  7. cute angel says

    Great article.

  8. Daniel Ndukwu says

    Don’t mention it Brian. Stay awesome

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