The Real Abhinav
Does Weed Help with the Creative Process?
Marijuana has always been known for recreational and medicinal uses, but can it help spark creativity? For centuries, artists, writers, and musicians have always claimed that weed has the power to unlock the creative process, but does it really help?
I sat down with my good friend and super successful entrepreneur, Peter Kell, to discuss how marijuana can be used as a tool to help ignite creativity, but with some caveats and rules.
Learn how weed could be helpful for the creative process when used appropriately and when it no longer is helpful but transforms into a crutch. Plus, what to do about the potential dependence on weed.
So, let’s start from the top, can weed help with the creative process? But first, where does creativity come from?
Creativity and the Brain
Creativity, based on research, can be found in the brain’s frontal lobe, where it houses divergent thinking, the core of where creativity derives from. Divergent thinking fuels creative problem-solving and outside of the box thinking.
Does Weed Help With Being Creative and Innovative?
In theory, when cannabis is consumed, it can cause the brain’s frontal area to be more active due to its ability to increase cerebral blood flow (CBF), activating divergent thinking.
In a 2012 case study, the use of cannabis increased an aspect of creativity with people with lower creative traits in a controlled group study. But not a lot of research has been done on marijuana and creativity, but we know that weed can affect the brain’s activity and function.
During my interview with Peter, we both agreed that weed could be helpful with the creative process if done correctly and used responsibly, intending to elevate your creativity, not just getting high.
Want to listen to the entire episode with Peter Kell on trusting yourself and finding your passion? Check out the link below.
How Can I Use Weed As Part of the Creative Process?
In my conversation with Peter, he shared his general guidelines for using weed for the creative process.
First off, he chooses to smoke a particular strain called Sativa, which is supposed to have an energizing and invigorating effect, also known as a “head high.” In contrast, to smoking Indica, which is a full-body high and has a deep relaxation effect, causes a person to move slower and not want to take any action.
He goes on to share that he typically journals or keeps an Ipad close by to write down thoughts, ideas, and goals as they come up.
“If you don’t have a notebook or laptop near you to record them, they could slip away so easily like slippery fish.” Peter shares.
He also makes it a rule to not smoke in the morning, only in the evening, when he is ready to relax and let the creative process flow.
When Weed Is No Longer a Tool But a Crutch
You’ve heard this saying before, “all things in moderation” and “too much of one thing is never a good idea.” The same goes for using weed as a tool for inspiring creativity.
It’s all good, in moderation. But there are warning signs when the tool turns into a crutch, something you depend on and lean on.
Here are a few warning signs:
Tolerance level starts to rise higher
The usage interferes with normal daily activities
You are breaking your rules of the time and day when you can use it.
Disengagement with family and friends
What Can I Do To Change My Relationship With Weed?
If you have got to a point when weed is no longer a tool for the creative process but rather a crutch to depend on and lean on, there are a few ways to slowly change your habits while and around the times you get high.
Get in tune with your thoughts
While you are high, journal your thoughts, emotions, and feelings at that moment. This will allow you to take a look at what comes up for you while you are high. The answers may be all be inside your words.
Try meditating for 5-10 minutes the next time you are high. Set an intention before you start to ask yourself why do I depend on weed? What am I trying to avoid feeling? And what would I do instead if I wasn’t spending my time getting high? Let your thoughts guide you to finding the answers on why you are dependent on weed.
It’s a numbers game
To regain control over your weed habit, set a goal to go with fewer days without getting high. So, in 30 days, if you smoke 18 of the 30 days, try to get down to 15 days. And the next month, take it down to 10-12 days. Set the intention to go through more days without weed every month. Allow yourself the time and space you need to let clarity sink in and to actually gain some sense of control and some weed-free days back into your life again.
The Final Takeaway- Does Weed Help with the Creative Process?
There is nothing wrong with smoking some weed to ignite creativity, generate new ideas or produce something outside your ordinary ways of thinking. Smoking weed can be helpful with the creative process but needs to be done responsibly and intending to get something useful from it.
But when you have lost the intention of using a weed as a tool for creativity and instead use it as a shield to cover up feelings or avoid something in your life, it’s time to put it aside altogether and start to explore and question your relationship with weed. It may have helped you become more creative, but don’t let it take away more from your life just for those fleeting moments of creativity.
Want more tips and advice on how to gain control back from addiction with weed? Follow the @therealabhinav on TikTok.