HI ALL, LONG TIME NO "SEE"!!!
Just read the book "Who Moved My Cheese" by Spencer Johnson, M.D. G.P. (Putnam’s Sons- Hard cover US$19.95; Can$27.99), it’s worth reading it; it’s a short story that will enlight you in 30-60 minutes at the most.
It’s a parable about change. There are four characters that live in a “Maze” and look for “Cheese” for nourishment and happiness.
Two of the characters are mice named Sniff and Scurry while two are “little people” (the size of the mice), these are Hem & Haw. “Cheese” is whatever you want in life: a good job, money, health, a good-lasting-loving relationship, etc. The “Maze” is where you look for what you want: your home, your job, your church, etc.
Everyday our four characters put on their tennis shoes and go out in search of their cheese; they get some here, some there, sometimes they go back home empty handed.
One day almost at the same time, they all discover an area full of Cheese, and they quit looking and just go back there day after day after day. While Sniff & Scurry are happy about it, Hem & Haw are so content that they actually move close to The Cheese area and put their tennis shoes away.
Some time goes by until one morning there is no more cheese!!!!!! As an immediate response, Sniff begins to sniff and Scurry scurries after him in search of new cheese. A while later Hem & Haw too realize that the cheese is gone so they immediately start complaining ”Who moved my cheese?”, somebody took my cheese away from me”, “I want my cheese back” and so forth.
Days pass and they continue to go back to the same place, doing the same they have for years, and at the brink of a breakdown they actually crack some walls open looking for THEIR CHEESE but the cheese seems to be definitely gone!!. Hence, Hem decides that it’s time to seek somewhere else and invites Haw to go with him; Haw doesn’t want to and after several days of insisting, Hem makes a final decision and goes on by himself “You can’t do this TO ME” yells Hem, but still, Haw puts on his tennis shoes and takes off.
As Haw searches the maze for New Cheese he feels more and more tired until he starts realizing that for some time there were signals that something was wrong but that neither he nor his partner were willing to see them, i.e. the cheese didn’t smell or taste that good toward the end, the big pile was actually getting smaller by the minute, etc. and with this thought in mind and by visualizing himself living happily with new cheese he began to feel energized, more alive, more willing to go to places in his search.
One day he found new cheese, not so much that he could move there, but it was the proof he needed to convince Hem that there was more cheese elsewhere, so Haw goes back to him and offers some of this new cheese. "Why! I don’t want new cheese. I want my old cheese back, it’s the only cheese I can live with". Some arguing goes on until Haw returns into the maze alone in search of new cheese.
After some-long time of struggling, Haw finds New Cheese and discovers that his ol’ pals the mice are already there. but this time he doesn’t take it for granted thinking that he’ll live happily ever after! Everyday he goes out in search of other cheese just in case this pile runs out; he also checks the cheese often to make sure that it’s not going bad.
The story ends with Haw hearing some steps getting close. Is it Hem who is finally moving in? Has Hem realized that change is actually good and that New Cheese can be actually very good?
We all can identify with one or more of these characters at certain moments in our lives. Where are we at, right now?
Personally, I hate it when anybody (including my soon-to-be-ex) “moves my cheese”, but the question would be, am I still in the same place waiting for the “cheese” to reappear, or am I actually reaching out realizing that MY LIFE AND HAPPINESS CANNOT DEPEND ON ANYBODY BUT ME?
Live fully and always learn