Who Moved My Cheese? by Spencer Johnson: Summary & Notes

Rating: 3/10

Available at: Amazon

Related: How to Suffer Well


A silly story about mice and cheese meant to demonstrate that change is uncomfortable but we’re better off adapting to it.

The story might be useful for children; I think it’s just too silly and condescending for many adults to take it seriously.

The authors acknowledge that it’s not for everyone—apparently some people enjoy it!


  • The more important something is to you, the more you want to hold on to it.
  • If you aren’t willing to change, you’ll become extinct.
  • What would you do if you weren’t afraid?
  • Things are rarely as bad as we think they will be in our heads.
  • It’s better to take control of your own fate than let things happen to you.
  • Be aware of your surroundings—the market, the world, the company, etc.—so you know when things are starting to change.
  • Taking action—moving in a direction—is always better for figuring out what’s next when you’re uncertain.
  • Being afraid is what causes us so much anxiety; getting started and losing that fear makes us feel much better.
  • Imagine what your future will hold to motivate yourself to change in the present.
  • Old beliefs will keep you tied to old behaviors. You need new beliefs—and an open mind—to encourage new behaviors.
  • If you can laugh at your own folly, it will be much easier to change. Taking ourselves too seriously limits us to our old ways.
  • The biggest inhibitor to change always lies within ourselves.
  • We want to keep things simple, be flexible, and move quickly.
  • Beware of imposing change in others; they will resist it if you force them.

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