Reflections from ‘Who moved my cheese?’

‘Who moved my cheese?’ by Spencer Johnson is certainly one of my favorite titles. It is a little anecdote on how one can choose to live their lives. Cheese, in the story is defined as whatever that makes us happy. To some, it is being rich and successful whereas to others, a cheese can be having a nice cozy family. To the lot of us reading this blog, Cheese is to lose those extra pounds, to be fit.

I got to view this little movie on ‘Who moved my cheese?’ again when I accompanied my students to Victoria Junior College for an orientation program. The key points of the movie can be summarized as such:

1.       Change happens

2.       Anticipate change

3.       Adapt to change quickly. The quicker you adapt, the quicker you can reach success

4.       Enjoy change and savor the adventure

However, what do they really mean?

Change happens

In the story, the characters, after running around in the maze, found a large supply of cheese. They were very happy and went back to the same place for cheese every day. However, one day, when they went back to the same place, the cheese was gone. Two of the characters chose to stay, hoping that the cheese will be put back someday while the other two went out into the maze again to find new cheese.

The truth of this world is that happiness found today may not be there tomorrow due to foreseen and unforeseen circumstances. When that happens, many of us will choose to deny the fact that it is already gone and linger on. We may continue in methods that do not work or insist on staying because it is scary to go into the maze to look for cheese again.

Anticipate change

The two characters readily went out into the maze again because they realized that the supply of cheese was getting smaller and smaller. While they were feasting on the cheese, they were also monitoring the supply of cheese. So when the supply of cheese went out, it didn’t catch them by surprise.

Because change happens, we need to anticipate change. How do we do so? We need to be aware of the small changes that are happening around us so when something happens, we are not caught by surprise. It is then that we can adapt to the changes quickly and pick ourselves up again.

Adapt to change quickly. The quicker you adapt, the quicker you can reach success

As the two characters went out into the maze sooner, they also found their second supply of cheese sooner. Simple common sense. Insisting on methods that do not work or staying won’t get you anywhere. You need to move out into the maze, out of your comfort zone, and search for cheese again. Sure, it seems dangerous and there will be a lot of difficulties. But you will find that they are not as difficult as what you have perceived. Instead, enjoy change, savor the adventure. Come out of your comfort zone to search for that new cheese!

Finding my cheese

Like I have shared in the previous posts, perhaps one of the hardest thing for me to do was to pick up running as a means to lose weight. To me, going for a run is like going into a huge scary maze. It is like going into uncharted waters. Personally, picking up running was something totally new and scary. Like I have said before, I couldn’t run for nuts!

The maze can be a very scary place and some times, we get so daunted by it, we never dare to go into it. However, finding cheese requires us to move out of our comfort zones. It requires us to go into that huge scary maze, to go through obstacles such that our characters are molded before we finally find cheese. And perhaps as you are running around in the maze, you will learn to enjoy and savor the adventure as it is not as scary as it seems.

So, linger in your comfort zones no longer. Stop insisting on method that do not work any more. Be brave and step into the maze to find your cheese!

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