The Cake Scale for Awareness and Meditation

I woke up today with a resolution.

“I will eat dinner by 7 pm and then eat nothing after that.”

I succeeded. I had the discipline to control my eating all day. I even had my dinner by 7 pm!!

And then, the witching time begins.

It was 9 pm, the kids were in bed, the house was this quiet haven, and that’s when the mind games started! “There is this bit of left over cake, a small piece of chocolate, salty chips…” My mind started making excuses… “I’ve had a long day,” “the kids were really cranky,” “a few bites don’t make such a difference,” “the ladoo is made in pure ghee and so is actually good for my skin” and you know what else…

This is my battle on most days. On the other hand there are an equal number of days where silencing those tempting thoughts is almost effortless. The question then is, what makes the difference?

The answer for me is  “Mindfulness through meditation.”

On most days I manage to do 20 minutes of deep breathing. There are 4 stages of awareness. As we meditate regularly and become more and mindful, we progress though these stages. For ease of visualization, I’ve thought of a ‘Cake Scale’ for measuring how aware and mindful you are. Here are the 4 stages of awareness on the Cake Scale:

The Cake Scale for Awareness –

1) Non-awareness: I have eaten the cake but not even realized.

2) Post-facto awareness: I have eaten the cake and then realize and feel guilty after is over.

3) In-process awareness: I am eating the cake and aware of it while eating. I know its wrong but I am unable to stop, but I may be able to control the quantity.

4) Preventive awareness: I see the cake and am mindful enough to avoid it.

Currently, I am at stage 3 and I am consistently working to reach stage 4. I have a plan, and I am going to add 5 minutes  3 times a day to my meditation practice, to help me with increasing my mindfulness and improve my Cake Scale.

What will help you progress through the Cake Scale for awareness?


Article Credits – Aarthi Jhunjhunwala