Growth doesn’t come wrapped up in stagnation it comes wrapped up in change. Though difficult at times once embraced positive change can open up a whole new world of opportunities. A lesson in the acceptance of change is shared in WHO MOVED MY CHEESE? – An A-Mazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and In Your Life by Spencer Johnson, M.D.
This small but powerful book tells the story of four main characters, Sniff, Scurry, Hem, Haw. They represent the parts of our personalities that dictate when and how we choose to react/adapt to change. We are also introduced to the maze and the cheese which are equally important to understand. the gist of the story. The maze is how we navigate through the things that come up in our lives. The cheese is what is motivates us to make that change.
These characters lived in a world where “all” of their wants and needs were met (the cheese). Over time the cheese started to dwindle, until there was nothing left. Sniff and Scurry having sensed the subtle changes early started preparing for that day when there would be nothing. Hem and Haw were distracted and armed with an attitude of entitlement believed that day would never come. They were in denial and refused to acknowledge their environment. Haw acted just in the knick of time and the jury is still out on Hem.
THOUGHTS for your SOUL:
- “Is the change happening for you or to you?”
- SCURRY – The part of you that is not afraid to try new things, ideas. Acts more than reacts. Likes to keep things simple.
- SNIFF – The part of you that is always on the lookout for opportunities. Acts more than reacts. Likes to keep options open.
- HEM – The part of you that is afraid to change, take risks, overanalyzes situations. Reacts more than acts. Likes to stay in the comfort zone.
- HAW – The part of you that realizes fear and faith cannot occupy the same space at the same time. Likes to procrastinate.
- MAZE – The paths of what, where and how we choose to live our lives. Our jobs, careers, relationships, etc.
- CHEESE – What motivates us, our desires, the things we chase in life.
With each of the characters they had to see change for themselves. Depending on the situation or circumstance you will react in a way that is reflective of one of the characters. No matter how good it might be many people don’t move until they feel comfortable and safe enough to do it.
Everybody at some point in their lives has faced change and been resistant to it. We hide behind our fears, insecurities, lies, toys, comfort zones, stubbornness or whatever else keeps us stuck. But in the end, it just boils down to the excuses that we tell ourselves that delay the inevitable.
There are times in your life when you have to let go of the things you want the most and play the hand that’s dealt to you. The old saying “No one can take what’s meant for you” only works if you go after what you want and not resolve to be a passive bystander in your life. More than likely there is a short window of opportunity to whom or what you may spend your time waiting for may not be waiting for you.
Change comes to us in many ways, but the two that have the most impact are those that we initiate (proactive) or those that are imposed/forced on us (reactive). Proactive – a new job. Reactive – a lay off, a firing, a divorce or relationship breakup. Here lies the opportunity for what could be your greatest breakthrough, but you can’t wait too long. It is never too late to make a change, you are never too old to course correct and to stop staring at closed doors. The window of opportunity doesn’t stay open forever.
Let’s BOND over BOOKS rates WHO MOVED MY CHEESE? as EASY & ENGAGING (150 pgs or less)…straight-forward, light and to the point.