Brain science, nootropics and really all things brain, is a new pursuit. The complexities and intricacies of brain science have long held us at bay from exploring. Humans have long speculated on consciousness, spirituality and the metaphysical, but in western sciences, we’re only at the proverbial tip of the iceberg thanks to unbelievable scientific research and technological advancements – which are accelerating btw. Psychedelics have always been a part of the neural conversation, but research and mainstream discussion surrounding their efficacies as medicines or guides have largely stalled in the US as a result of Richard Nixon’s Controlled Substances Act of 1971. Since then the community has gone underground. Dedicated and lifelong guides have kept it breathing through ceremonies and therapy sessions in apartments, farms and lofts around the country.
In the early 1990s, however, a new generation of researchers once again opened Pandora’s box. Thanks to their fortitude, dedication and a shifting public consciousness towards the organic and holistic, psychedelics as a medicinal pursuit have come roaring back. Both psilocybin and MDMA are in phase 3 of FDA testing, the last step before approval, while institutions like Johns Hopkins, New York University and U.C.L.A., have performed a series of drug trials yielding notably promising results. Regulators have responded favourably to the various studies citing their safety and efficacy. The hopes of scientists are to be able to offer widespread therapy, particularly for patients suffering from major depression and other similar mental illnesses. Past are the days of moral panic during the counter-culture movement and in are the days of psychedelics as respected medicines and therapies.
Below we discuss some ways in which you can enter the paradigm and explore. You do NOT need to ingest anything to produce similar effects and experiences. There’s a lot of brain to explore, choose what works for you, and do so wisely.
Taking a dose so low or “sub-therapeutic” that they are unlikely to produce whole-body effects, but high enough for sub-perceptual improvement.
- LSD for subperceptual improvement. People note improvement in problem-solving, coding, etc
- Psilocybin for subperceptual improvement like LSD, but have also noted improved fitness and athletic performance
- Going down the rabbit hole if you’re ready to jump in, we HIGHLY recommend doing your research and finding the proper environment and situation. Be honest with yourself and be responsible. Very responsible. Have an intention. Why do you want to do it? What do you hope to gain? Are you mentally fit to handle the experience? Do you have the right supervision? Are you currently stressed? Etc.
No Ingestion Necessary: alternative, unconventional therapies
- Float Tanks or Sensory Deprivation Tanks are effectively large bathtubs (usually enclosed) filled with body-temperature water saturated with typically around 800 pounds of Epsom salt. The environment should be dead silent and completely dark. With no sensory or homeostasis required, the brain and body is at complete ease. Stay tuned for a deeper dive into the Floating experience and overview!
Yoga is a great way to find balance the mind, body & spirit. The conscious synchronized breathing & movement helps to find your center, steadying your disposition.
- Meditation. Quieting the mind is an eternal struggle. Turning off the chatter and coming back to center for as little as 10 seconds is a promising pursuit. Try a group class or one of the free guided meditations on YouTube to help get started.
Technically NOT psychedelic → Cognitive Stimulants
- Nicotine — usually a spray is preferred for a daily cognitive stimulant. Nicoderm can also be an alternative if you prefer gum. We’ve tried it, the gum is a bit to get used to, but we found it to be effective. #chewingaway
- Nootropic aka a smart drug or cognitive enhancer is an emerging field with lots of options out there. Do your research and choose wisely if you go this route.