The end of August is upon us, and that can only mean one thing – school is near, if not already underway. If you’re a parent, you understand how pivotal this month is in a kid’s life. The new school year brings new teachers, friendships and opportunities, but more consistently brings a whole lot of change. I was recently reading Andy Grove’s book, Only the Paranoid Survive, and while the concept of an inflection point is not new to me as a businessman, it dawned on me that each new school year is actually an inflection point for my kids. 

If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, an inflection point is simply a turning point or a time of significant change. It’s almost inevitable that businesses will go through an inflection point, though more likely they’ll go through several. The same is said for individuals, as we all face inflection points from time to time. As a matter of fact, we were all impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, which happens to be one of the most significant and disruptive inflection points of our time. 

To weather the storm, albeit business, school or anything in between, it’s important to keep the mindset that this too shall pass. Oftentimes, change feels like the end of the world – especially to a child. I can recall simply not being invited to an event that all my friends were attending and how insurmountable that felt growing up.  Even positive changes that a child associates as exciting can elicit stress and anxiety, so imagine the emotional toll of drastic or negative change.

As your kids descend upon the new school year, or you find yourself surrounded by more and more people in the office – let this post be your gentle nudge to show up for others going through inflection points. Provide a judgment-free, safe space for them to confide. Show compassion and positivity. Remind them of their resiliency, but most importantly, help them find the courage to turn the page. You have the chance to be the rain or sunshine in someone’s day, so choose wisely.