Learn 20 Expressions Related to Failure

Failure is a part of life and learning to express it effectively can help in better communication. Whether in personal conversations or professional settings, using idioms and phrasal verbs related to failure can add color and depth to your language. Here are 20 expressions to enhance your vocabulary.

1. Bite the Dust

Meaning: Fail completely
Example: His new business bit the dust last month.

2. Come a Cropper

Meaning: Meet with failure
Example: She came a cropper in the last race.

3. Fall Flat

Meaning: Fail to impress
Example: His joke fell flat with the audience.

4. Go Down in Flames

Meaning: Fail spectacularly
Example: The project went down in flames after budget cuts.

5. Hit a Snag

Meaning: Encounter a problem
Example: We hit a snag with the software update.

6. Strike Out

Meaning: Fail completely
Example: He struck out in his attempt to win.

7. Miss the Boat

Meaning: Miss an opportunity
Example: I missed the boat on that job offer.

8. Fall Short

Meaning: Fail to meet expectations
Example: The proposal fell short of our standards.

9. Crash and Burn

Meaning: Fail spectacularly
Example: Their startup crashed and burned within a year.

10. Come to Grief

Meaning: Meet with failure
Example: The expedition came to grief in bad weather.

11. Hit Rock Bottom

Meaning: Reach the lowest point
Example: After the failure, he hit rock bottom.

12. Go Belly Up

Meaning: Go bankrupt or fail
Example: The company went belly up last quarter.

13. Bite Off More Than One Can Chew

Meaning: Take on too much
Example: He bit off more than he could chew with this project.

14. Draw a Blank

Meaning: Fail to find an answer
Example: She drew a blank during the interview.

15. Go to Pot

Meaning: Deteriorate or fail
Example: The plan went to pot after his resignation.

16. Flop

Meaning: Fail badly
Example: The movie flopped at the box office.

17. Hit the Skids

Meaning: Decline or fail
Example: His career hit the skids after the scandal.

18. Bomb

Meaning: Fail miserably
Example: The show bombed on its opening night.

19. Bite the Big One

Meaning: Fail badly
Example: Their latest product bit the big one in sales.

20. Fall by the Wayside

Meaning: Fail to continue
Example: Many startups fall by the wayside within a year.

expressions related to Failure