We’re going through pretty unprecedented time’s right? And whether we want to or not we have to all adapt and change in most aspects of our lives. From those of us who are used to commuting into an office to now working from a little corner in our home. Or the people who thought school was well and truly behind them and never envisioned teaching a curriculum, now adapting to re-learning their As Gaeilge and arithmetic. Or the busy bees who socialised most evenings now confined to using technology to communicate with the outside world. Change has embraced us all over the last few weeks whether we want to embrace it or not. So after reading ‘Who Moved My Cheese?’ by Dr Spencer Johnson, it got me thinking about which character I am while dealing with change.
To summarise the story, there are 4 characters Hem, Haw, Scurry and Sniff. When faced with a situation that requires change (their cheese is moved – obvious?) they all took a different approach. As sniff had been constantly sniffing out any changes in the cheese, when it was moved he was able to move on quickly to find the next station of cheese. Along with Sniff, always ready for action Scurry quickly moves to the next station. Hem denied and resisted change for fear of the worst and refused to look for alternative cheese. While Haw slowly learns that fear has been holding him back and starts to investigate other places in the maze while learning from his mistakes. The cheese is a metaphor for what we want in life whether that’s career, family, wealth, health or spiritual – just in case that wasn’t completely obvious to you.
I think there is a little of all 4 in each and every one of us but which one shines above the rest in your life? How could embracing change, change your life? Are you in fear of the worst or willing to take the risk?
While a lot of the change that happens around us is out of our control, it is within your control how to react to the situation. So what can you do going forward? Keep it simple!
Ask yourself what are the benefits of fighting this change? You’ll find that you can come up with very few answers. Then ask, what is holding you back? The answer is most likely fear or fear of failure. But what would you do in your life if you had no fear? Generally, your fear is irrational so let it go and take action. Learn from your mistakes of the past and be aware of change happening so that you can react quicker the next time. Finally, find the positive in the change. At the moment, I’m grateful for the extra time I can spend in bed, having freshly made warm lunches and having more time for personal growth. While the current situation is very different for everyone, try find what you can be positive about.
Change happens for a reason, and yes things may never be the same again, but that’s life. If things didn’t change we’d still be sitting around a camp fire hunting for our own food.
‘Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied by discomforts’ – Arnold Bennett
View a short little film about Dr Spencer’s ‘Who Moved My Cheese?’: