As we sit here the first few days of 2012, it is almost impossible not to think about what the new year has in store for us.  Most of us would agree that the economy is not in tip-top shape nor are we.  The gyms are crowded this time of the year as people scramble to lose a few pounds while remaining focused on their New Year’s resolution to lose those love handles.  “Hey, I was next on that treadmill!”  In the interim, the only constants are change, complexity and uncertainty.

If you started a new venture in 2011, I suspect that you know by now what a shrinking economy can do to your psyche, quality of life and bank account.   Organizations in so many sectors continue to cut back on services, employees, and vendors while slashing costs like Zorro.  I have spoken to people across the country who are waiting for “it” to get better.  Is that your 2012 strategy too?  Wait, see and hope?

I think you would agree that there is certainly less low-hanging fruit right now than in the good ‘ole days.  You may have to work on your vertical leap in ’12 to land a new customer.  While you are at it, head to the local mall and purchase a pair of Air Jordan’s so you are prepared for your next day of pounding the pavement for new customers.  It always helps if you can leap tall buildings at a single bound.  For all of us mortals, however, we must grind it out every day one call, text and email at a time. The bright side is that you have a new start, which happens to be today, tomorrow, this week and next.  Regardless of what happens with the economy this year, your industry, the election, global warming, or your lack of experience etc… you have no choice but to find a way to get it done this year.  You will either find a way or find an excuse.  Choose wisely my friend.

Are you ready?  Stand up right now, and step away from your computer.  I want you to bury all of the emotional baggage from this past year so you can move forward in making 2012 the year that your personal brand finally arrived.  There is indeed an opportunity for you to make a huge splash in the pool.  Do yourself a favor and stop waiting for a lifeguard.  Doggie paddling is swimming too.  Jump in right now!

Hold on.  I have a collect call from the market.   Will you accept “it”?  The market is in dire need of you right now.  DO NOT WAIT! The journey of a million miles begins with one-step.

Happy New Year.


Devin C. Hughes, The Chief Inspiration Officer is a former college basketball player, professional speaker, leadership and personal branding aficionado, and frequent eclectic thinker.  He draws on a variety of ideas, disciplines and trends to inspire “Big Thoughts” and facilitate conversations as a catalyst for meaningful personal and organizational change.  He is a graduate of Colgate University; he lives in Southern California with his wife and four daughters.  Follow him on Twitter.  Connect with him on Facebook and LinkedIn. His website is  He is available upon request for consultation.