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Who Moved My Cheese

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"Who Moved My Cheese"

By Spencer Johnson

The story revolves around two mice, Sniff and Scurry, and two little people, Hem and Haw. They live in a maze and spend their time running around, looking for, finding, and eating Cheese. Cheese, as is stated in the foreword by Kenneth Blanchard, is "a metaphor for what we want to have in life", such as a job, a relationship, money, a big house, or an insulting yet best selling business book. Within the 94 pages of this self-help book is found an approximate 45-minute serving of information aimed at helping us to insert change in our lives. This is one of those little books that you can read in an hour, and change your life for the better, at least that what it is purported to do. Conceived by Dr. Spencer Johnson and published in September 1998, it was written in a period when Johnson himself was going through a period of strife.

Johnson, during this time, had problems coping with the change and alterations that seemed to be materializing of their own accord in his life. It is these changes and the inability to cope with them that, according to Johnson, is what gets us down in corporate ladder as well as in life.

In this book, Johnson focuses on how people can get where and what they want simply by changing their perspective and their approach. In relation to how changes in any scope of life effect an individual, the book depicts how the mice and the little people upon who the story is based, react when their cheese. Some sniff around for new opportunities. Some scurry after those opportunities. Some hem and haw, rooted by fear and unable to move, and some learn to laugh at their fears and go looking for New Cheese. This, when taken symbolically, relates exactly to the way that individuals respond to any changes that may occur in their daily lives and jobs. What makes it different is child like simplicity with which it is written and what makes it so easy for even a seven year old to enjoy, though in quite another context than the intended.

The downfall of the book too, as far as I can make out, lies in this simplicity of narration. Upon reading it in light of the reviews that one comes across so frequently, it turns out to be something of an letdown, that is to say that it is a rather childlike narration that totally deprives the book of any essence of depth. It is not quite as deep and meaningful, as a lot of people would lead you to believe it is, and represents primarily what is common sense. Johnson reveals to us what is basically already inherent in us the importance of change and common sense. Johnston puts emphasis on the different ways that one can adopt to adapt to changes, but these are mostly methods that have already been illustrated by books of the same genre.

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