Anyone with a TV has undoubtedly been introduced to Flo, Progressive’s quirky and oftentimes hilarious insurance queen. You might not realize it, but Flo’s expertise actually transcends beyond the world of insurance. She also happens to offer quotes about life and love and living the American dream.
This may be happenstance, or it may be a smart writer formulating a brand message. But hidden within her insurance solutions for drivers, bikers, and homeowners are nuggets of wisdom we just can’t ignore.
Here are three Flo quotes that recently caught my attention and the deeper meanings you can extract from them:
1. “Should I keep putting toothpicks in this Jell-O?”
In this Thanksgiving-themed commercial, we’re given a glimpse into how Flo’s family prepares for their feast. We watch Flo’s mother explain her method of cooking Thanksgiving tapas, and as she describes each miniature Thanksgiving dish, Flo pipes up to ask whether she should keep putting toothpicks in the bite-sized Jell-O servings.
Putting toothpicks in Jell-O is as useful as filling a colander with water. In other words: It’s pointless. Effectively picking up and eating Jell-O with a toothpick is next to impossible.
So what’s the lesson we learn here? Don’t try to force success by using unsuccessful tactics. Always take the time to truly evaluate the profitability of what you’re doing. This minimizes your chances of failure and cuts down on wasted time and resources.
2. “Really, we’re just a normal family. A normal, crazy family.”
Also from “Flo’s Family: Creative Thanksgiving”
This commercial also shows us that quirky Flo comes from an even quirkier family. Toward the end, Flo makes the above statement on how, really, they’re a normal family. “A normal, crazy family.” This makes me wonder: What is “normal”?
The definition of the word “normal” is fluid and constantly evolving. Things that were considered to be normal 50 years ago are now considered to be taboo or stale. Flo realizes that the definition of a “normal family” is just as varied. All families have their own unique quirks and oddities. When abnormality becomes the norm, you can embrace crazy and rejoice in your uniqueness.
3. “Cats playing basketball sounded so cool!”
Flo has high hopes for her feline basketball team in this commercial. They’re all decked out in their cute little uniforms, but to her disappointment, they seem disinterested in actually playing ball. Flo concedes that the critics who said that cats couldn’t play basketball were probably right. But she still stands by her idea, stating that the theory behind it is “so cool.”
Flo’s attitude teaches us that there can be excitement in the unknown and that there’s a thrill that comes with overcoming remarkable obstacles. If there actually were a team of ferocious felines that could dunk like Michael Jordan, who wouldn’t want to catch a game? Cool ideas are always worth pursuing — even if they fail in the end.
We could all take a page from Flo’s book of quotes on life and love. Through her wise lessons, we see the importance of openness. When we’re open to learning from every person and thing we come into contact with, we can find nuggets of wisdom in the most unlikely places — even from a seemingly silly character like Flo. The opportunity for enlightenment is all around us. Open your eyes, ears, and hearts to let it in.