This is the sentence from a TED Speech.

You could watch it at 1:52.

. . . if you do that everything will fall into place and if you don’t you failed.

Why is she saying 'failed'?
Isn't it supposed to be just 'will fail'?
Is she trying to show something different nuance?

  • 1
    Could you please leave a link to the talk you're referring to?
    – M.A.R.
    Mar 1, 2017 at 7:04
  • @M.A.R. I'm sorry I forgot to add the link. Thank you for letting me know. :) I just put it.
    – Elaung
    Mar 1, 2017 at 13:59
  • 1
    If you don't do the thing she is talking about, you have failed. I think she said: "You've failed."
    – WRX
    Mar 1, 2017 at 14:03
  • @Willow is right. She says "you've failed", which is a normal use of perfect.
    – M.A.R.
    Mar 1, 2017 at 19:11

1 Answer 1


Here's a clearer way to say what the TED speaker was saying:

'If you do that, then everything will fall into place, but if you don't, you will have failed.'

Yes, literally, she means 'will fail', but the correct English expression is 'you HAVE failed', as the speaker said. (you've = you have).

From a learning point of view, it is more correct to say 'you will have failed'. The logic behind this is that if a certain action is not carried out, then the person not only WILL fail, but once they've failed, they would say 'I have failed', so, looking into the future, they 'will have failed'.

There's no nuance: you can think of it as 'will fail', just keep in mind that you should say it as 'will have failed': it's just a strange thing about the English language.

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