Are You in the Actuation Zone?

I just returned from the National Speakers Association Winter Conference where I gained a lot of new knowledge about modern marketing. The “Monday-morning question” for all the conference attendees is, Will we put the new knowledge into practice? Or, will we return to our laundry list of client issues, problems, overhead, and all the other items that keep us from moving to the next level in our businesses and lives?

To grow in our businesses and lives, we must enter the “Actuation Zone”—the zone where we put change into motion. “To Actuate” means: a) to put into motion; 2) to motivate.

Change Leadership Secret #90What new idea, process, technique, tool, relationship, skill, or attitude are you putting into motion, today?

Just pick one new thing to do, today. The item you put into motion must be new, though. Because, the only way to get different results, is to do something different.

Same actions = same results
New actions = new results

The second definition of “actuate” is to motivate. What will be your motive?

The words “automotive” and “locomotive” mean: of, relating to, or being a machine that moves about by operation of its own mechanism; self-propelled machines. People are also “loco”—locomotives, that is. Only you can motivate your actions. Only you can step up into the actuation zone and put the changes into motion that will take your business and life to the next level. No other person, or thing, can do it for you.

So, how do you get started? Simply take one, tiny step—now! You are not in motion until you take the first step. At the conference Randy Gage and Anthony Iannarino said they blog daily. I haven’t been blogging regularly for a long time. So, today, I am taking the first step of writing this blog before I tackle all the other items on my to-do list. Will I be blogging tomorrow? It matters not. Tomorrow is another day. I cannot let my fear of what might happen, tomorrow, prevent me from taking the first step, today.

Then, how can you maintain the momentum and stay in motion, tomorrow? From a physics point of view, there are only two things that impact your momentum: 1) resisting forces and 2) driving forces. To maintain your momentum, you need to reduce the resistance and reinforce the drivers.

Alex Mendossian warned the audience that when they return home from the conference and go back to work on Monday, there will be a number of people waiting to hit them with the “reality shovel”—all the existing forces pushing people back into their current place. He says we have to be “martial-arts shovel duckers” and avoid these resisting forces. What are the items, people, tasks, knowledge, skills, and other forms of ball-and-shackle that will slow you down as you put your change into motion? How you can reduce or eliminate them?

What will be the driving forces that will work to maintain your momentum? One of the forces in my Four Forces model of human motivation is “cognitive strategies”. These are strategies you purposefully and mindfully (aka “cognitively”) put into place to force yourself to behave a certain way. Examples are daily calendars and time budgeting, new routines, daily affirmations—even the classic string-around-the-finger. What systems can you put in place to force yourself to continue taking the new action?

The key is to “just show up” and “keep showing up.” If you take a small step every day, then, at the end of the year, instead of being in the same place and a year older, you’ll have grown tremendously in your business and in your life!

About The Actuation Zone®
To hear interviews with authors, scholars and practitioners who share ways you can grow in your business and in your life, listen to The Actuation Zone Radio Show, hosted by Brett Clay.

About Change Leadership Group and Brett Clay
Clay is the author of “Selling Change,” named the best business book and best sales book of 2010, and is the CEO of Change Leadership Group, LLC, a firm that helps clients improve their sales, marketing, and leadership capabilities. A veteran of 20 years in international sales and marketing management, most recently with Microsoft Corporation, he is an award-winning author, award-winning marketer, trainer, speaker, consultant, and business leader.


  1. […] into the Actuation Zone to Be a Super Bowl Champion, says Change… Change leadership expert, Brett Clay, who attended the National Speakers Association (NSA) Conference during […]

  2. […] Change leadership expert, Brett Clay, who attended the National Speakers Association (NSA) Conference during the Super Bowl, says people can achieve their goals and feel like Super Bowl champions if they get into the actuation zone–the mindset of putting change into motion. Only by making changes can people improve their success and attain their goals. Clay discusses how people, such as the NSA Conference attendees, can put change into motion. […]

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