The look for “cheese” to nourish them
The book “Who Moved My Cheese? ” is a simple story about mice and “little people” that helps readers handle and deal with changes in their lives. The story is about two mice and two human-like individuals named “little people” (who are the size of the mice). The two mice’s names are Scurry and Sniff. The two little people’s names are Hem and Haw.
The story takes place in a “maze” and the characters look for “cheese” to nourish them in the maze. When the characters find cheese, only to have it disappear, they experience change.The different characters show different ways of responding to this change and teach lessons that can be applied to our daily lives. Before I get to the main story line, let me explain the symbolism behind the cheese and the maze. The “cheese” is a symbol for what you want to have in life (ex. doing well in school, making a team, getting a job, finding love, etc.
). And the “maze” is where you look for what you want (school, work, community, etc. ).Now, this is where the mice and little people come in.
They spend their time running around this maze looking for cheese. All four of the characters (Scurry, Sniff, Hem, and Haw) all find cheese at Station C. When suddenly the cheese is all gone one day, Scurry and Sniff leave in search of new cheese. When the situation changed and the cheese had been moved, they changed themselves and moved with the cheese. However, Hem and Haw had a different approach.
They ranted and raved at the injustice of it all. They couldn’t believe that the cheese was actually gone! They thought it “wasn’t fair” that the cheese was suddenly gone. The little people were growing weak from the lack of cheese because they stayed at Station C hoping the cheese would re-appear. Haw eventually realized that he needed to laugh at himself and move on. Hem however remained reluctant and unwilling the change. So, Haw left Station C in search for more cheese.On his journey through the maze, Haw learned many things about change and how to deal with it.
He learned that change happens (the cheese was moved), you need to anticipate change (be ready for the cheese to move), monitor the change (smell the cheese often so you know when it is getting old), adapt to the change (The quicker you let go of old cheese, the sooner you can enjoy new cheese), change yourself (move with the cheese), enjoy the change (savor the adventure and enjoy new cheese), and be ready to change quickly and njoy it again and again (the cheese keeps moving). When he found his way through the maze to Cheese Station N, he wrote all these things on the wall of the station. He applied all these principles to his daily life and changed the way he lived compared to his life at Station C. When changes happen in your life, you can choose to be like Sniff and Scurry, like Hem, or like Haw. Sniff and Scurry kept things simple.
They didn’t overanalyze or overcomplicate things.They simply moved on. Hem, he didn’t move on. He stayed in misery and didn’t realize that he needed to change with the change — move with the cheese. Lastly, theres Haw.
He had to learn from his mistakes and laugh at his previously self and move with the cheese. I hope that we can all not make the mistake that Hem and Haw made and learn to deal with change by going with the flow and moving with the cheese! Who Moved My Cheese – Spencer Johnson – 2000