An inflection point is an event that results in significant change in the progress of a company, industry, economy or geopolitical situation. In human development, “growth points” are the moments when thoughts and words and actions collide. They can also be called “turning points” after which a dramatic change, with either positive or negative results, is expected to occur.
In maths, the inflection point is where the direction of a curve changes in response to an event. Politically, an inflection point can be illustrated by the fall of the Berlin Wall or the fall of communism in Poland and other Eastern Bloc countries. No matter the semantics, these are points after which things drastically change.
We experience inflection points in life, too. They are the moments that mark when our lives will no longer be the same. We experience them all kinds of ways. People enter and exit our lives. Diems get carpe’d. Changes happen, whether we expect them or not.
Companies, economies, and countries are dynamic and constantly-evolving. And—boy—so is life.
I know I’ve experienced plenty of change, growth, setbacks, etc. But I kept on rolling. And, if you’re reading this, I have no choice but to assume you’re rolling along, too.
Our lives’ inflection points are the make-or-break moments. They’re when we have the choice: succumb or fight, be changed or be the change, stay true to ourselves or give in to external forces. And that’s what separates us from companies and economies: the ability to choose when and what our turning points will be.
Andy Grove, Intel’s co-founder, described inflection points as “an event that changes the way we think and act.”
It’s the moment you decide that playing with your kid is more important than how pizza tastes. It’s when you figure out an overall healthy balance so that pizza can be enjoyed on occasion. It’s the moment you recognize your worth and leave behind an unhealthy relationship. Every moment of our life is ours to capture, and any one of them can be the moment you decide to turn life towards the positive.