Tag Archives: Mindset


Who Moved My Cheese?: An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life

Who Moved My Cheese?: An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life Header

Change is inevitable. It naturally occurs in life wherever you are, whatever you do, whatever your status in life is, whether you are an employee or a businessman. Nevertheless, it depends upon the person how he deals with each change that comes in his way.

In the world, there are four types of people and that is deliberately addressed in the book entitled, Who Moved My Cheese?: An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life written by Dr. Spencer Johnson. It is a phenomenal book with each page containing valuable and meaningful insights for entrepreneurs and employees alike with one simple goal: to find “Cheese”.

CHARACTERSWho Moved My Cheese Cover

The first scene encompasses the story of former classmates gathering around during a high school reunion to talk about their situations in life. Until one of their classmates, Michael, told them about the tale “Who Moved My Cheese?” which is actually the core story of the book.

There are four characters in the tale:

  • SNIFF: a mouse who sniffs out or detects change early so he is able to deal with it;
  • SCURRY: another mouse who scurries into action whenever there is a change. Hand-in-hand with Sniff, they venture out to find new “cheese” whenever they find out that there is a shortage of it;
  • HEM: a little person with almost an exact size of a mouse, but with a complex brain and human emotion who denies and defies change because of his fear that it will lead to something bad; and
  • HAW: another little person like Hem who knows how to laugh at his mistakes and adapt to the change when he sees that it will lead into something better.

The “Cheese”, on the other hand, is a representation of the opportunities or whatever we want to have in our life, such as a successful job, business, relationship, health, money, freedom, achievements, and material things, among others.


The tale focuses on the four characters, Sniff, Scurry, Hem and Haw, who were on a journey in the maze to find the cheese. Hem and Haw had finally found their stock of cheese in Cheese Station C where they found comfort and ease. They even lived near it and invited friends to the station to boast their triumph. Little did they know that their pile of cheese was being gradually reduced until one day, they got the shock of their lives when they went to Cheese Station C and found nothing.

Meanwhile, following their instincts, Sniff and Scurry never ceased to search for “New Cheese”. Whenever they found a supply of cheese, they monitor it every day to determine shortage.

Back to Hem and Haw, grief and denial followed after the incident. They couldn’t believe that their stock of cheese was gone. They keep on digging the walls of Cheese Station C as they believed that the cheese might just be there somewhere. That was what they did day after day until they became irritable. Haw finally realized the futility of what they’re doing. He learned to laugh at himself and told Hem that maybe it’s time that they search for a new cheese. However, Hem was skeptical and refused to get out of the station and told Haw that he can’t take his chances on the maze anymore and that he is already too old for that.

Haw then ventured out to the maze to look for a new cheese and found that he was happier than he thought he would be – better than the way things were when he was still in Cheese Station C. He was inspired by Sniff and Scurry’s mindset. Along the way, they realized so many things, positive ones, and wrote them on the wall. He found several pieces of chees on the maze and tried to give some to Hem when he came back, but Hem still declined to come with him.

Determined, Haw continued his quest until he finally found Cheese Station N where he found quite a large stock of different kinds of Cheese. He also found Sniff and Scurry at the station. This time, he already knew what to do. He monitored the pile of cheese every single day, recalled the things he learned in life, and reminded himself to always move with the “cheese”. Suddenly, a movement outside the Cheese Station N grew louder and louder. Haw could only hope that it was his friend Hem who realized that he should get out of his comfort zone, face his fears and follow the traces he left on the wall to also move with the cheese.


Here are the important points of the core story that are worth contemplating:

  • Take control of your life rather than the other way around.
  • Be patient. People usually start from little things to get ready when there’s a bigger opportunity coming.
  • Embracing change is not dependent on age. No matter how old you are, it is never too late for a change. Instead, open your mind and look on the positive side of things.
  • Face the challenges. Never fear them as they will take you to success. While taking several steps, you will find that the fear reduces and along the way, do not be discouraged to continue.
  • Always monitor your current situation. Always ask yourself: “Did some things change?” Be more alert and always anticipate change.
  • It’s better late to seize opportunities than never doing so.
  • If you feel discouraged, always ask yourself: “What would I do if I weren’t afraid?”
  • When you are fearful, always think that “when you move beyond your fear, you feel free”.
  • Do not scare yourself as it would just make things worse.
  • Reflect and plan the steps that you should do in your life.
  • Always enjoy what you do, no matter how difficult it is.
  • Picture how you would like to see yourself realistically. The more you imagine, the more it becomes real and believable.
  • Think of what you gain instead of what you lose. A change would not lead to something worse, it could lead to something better.
  • Some people are afraid of something new, they still prefer their usual and traditional routine which makes it difficult for them to embrace change which continually and naturally occurs.
  • Taking a new direction will help you generate strength and vigor and you’ll find out that the goal is only part of the challenge.
  • What you are afraid of is not as bad as you thought it is, the fear you build inside is worse than the existing situation.
  • Do not deny the situation that has already taken place.
  • Helping other people is useless when they let fear and inflexibility consume them. Some people are very adamant and refuses to accept the changes.

Following the series of events in the story only proves that the saying, “Try and try until you succeed” as a matter-of-fact, is true after all!

Who Moved My Cheese?: An Amazing Way to Deal With Change in Your Work and in Your Life

Who Moved My Cheese?: An Amazing Way to Deal With Change in Your Work and in Your Life

Tag: Recommended Books
Publisher: G. P. Putman
Publication Year: 1998
ISBN: 0399144463

Who Moved My Cheese? takes the fear and anxiety out of managing the future and shows people a simple way to successfully deal with the changing times, providing them with a method for moving ahead with their work and lives safely and effectively.

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About the Book

With Who Moved My Cheese? Dr. Spencer Johnson realizes the need for finding the language and tools to deal with change–an issue that makes all of us nervous and uncomfortable.
Most people are fearful of change because they don’t believe they have any control over how or when it happens to them. Since change happens either to the individual or by the individual, Spencer Johnson shows us that what matters most is the attitude we have about change.

When the Y2K panic gripped the corporate realm before the new millenium, most work environments finally recognized the urgent need to get their computers and other business systems up to speed and able to deal with unprecedented change. And businesses realized that this was not enough: they needed to help people get ready, too.

Spencer Johnson has created his new book to do just that. The coauthor of the multimillion bestseller The One Minute Manager has written a deceptively simple story with a dramatically important message that can radically alter the way we cope with change. Who Moved My Cheese? allows for common themes to become topics for discussion and individual interpretation.

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Who Moved My Cheese?: An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life by Spencer Johnson

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Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

Predictably Irrational Header

Why can people be irrational when it comes to making simple everyday decisions?

Well, it’s as simple as understanding the human psychology of the hidden forces that shape our decisions. Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely is a fundamental book on why humans, customers and buyers decide to take action.

For instance, the concept of anchoring is an important tool to understand. If you purchased your first KIND Bar for $4.00 and your friend purchased the same KIND Bar for $0.50 at another store, when you and your friend purchase another KIND Bar for $2.50, the perspective between you vs your friend will be completely different. In the real world, anchoring comes from the manufacturers suggested retail prices (MSRP), advertised prices, promotions, product introductions, etc. – all of which are supply side variables, meaning pricing can be controlled to influence customer decisions.

What does this show? That our first decisions resonate over a long sequence of decisions. First impressions are incredibly important.

“….people are sometimes willing to sacrifice the pleasure they get from a particular consumption experience in order to project a certain image to others.” – Dan Ariely

On another note, the power of FREE! has tremendous benefits. Experiments were ran in France comparing the results of offering shipping for $1 Franc vs offering FREE! shipping. What happened was that shipping for $1 Franc was virtually ignored by purchasers. FREE! shipping on the other hand resulted in an enthusiastic response by customers.

APredictably Irrationalnother interesting thing to note about FREE! is that it subtly changes decisions from monetary transactions to social transactions, which has an enormous impact on how others view us and our actions. The conclusion: no one is offended by a small gift, because even small gifts keep us in the social exchange world and away from market norms. Hundreds of years ago when individuals were mostly farmers and fending for themselves and their families, economies mostly ran on social transactions, resulting in bonds between traders, potentially connecting people and their resources.

These experiments show that cash will only take you so far – social norms are the forces that can make a difference in the long run. Our task as entrepreneurs is to figure out which of the two – social or market norms – will product the most desirable outcome.

The price of ownership is another interesting concept in the book. It is true that the idea of possessions causes us to view objects in different perspectives. We fall in love with what we already have. Another thing is that we focus on what we may lose, rather than what we may gain. A third quirk is that we assume other people will see the transaction from the same perspective as we do. All this mean is that ownership has its own pecularities. The more work you put into something, the more ownership you begin to feel for it and lose perception of its actual value in the marketplace.

Our brains work in fascinating ways. Although we may believe we are rational and logical decision makers as consumers in our everyday lives, the hidden reality is that we are emotional creatures that make seemingly questionable decisions. Understand these hidden forces and you will be aware of how decisions are shaped in our everyday lives.

Predictably Irrational, Revised and Expanded Edition: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

Predictably Irrational, Revised and Expanded Edition: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

Tag: Recommended Books
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Publication Year: 2010
ASIN: B002C949KE
ISBN: 9780061353246

Why do our headaches persist after we take a one-cent aspirin but disappear when we take a fifty-cent aspirin? Why do we splurge on a lavish meal but cut coupons to save twenty-five cents on a can of soup? When it comes to making decisions in our lives, we think we're making smart, rational choices....

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About the Book

Why do our headaches persist after we take a one-cent aspirin but disappear when we take a fifty-cent aspirin? Why do we splurge on a lavish meal but cut coupons to save twenty-five cents on a can of soup?

When it comes to making decisions in our lives, we think we’re making smart, rational choices. But are we?

In this newly revised and expanded edition of the groundbreaking New York Times bestseller, Dan Ariely refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways. From drinking coffee to losing weight, from buying a car to choosing a romantic partner, we consistently overpay, underestimate, and procrastinate. Yet these misguided behaviors are neither random nor senseless. They’re systematic and predictable—making us predictably irrational.

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Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely

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