I’d never really thought about microdosing cannabis until recently.
I’ve found microdosing psilocybin (the active compound in magic mushrooms) to be very beneficial, so I started to research the idea of consuming other psychoactive substances in small, non-perceptual doses.
And that’s when I came across this book – Small Magic: Microdosing cannabis to improve creativity, defeat writer’s block, and write faster, by Jack McTerra. In it, the author details how taking microdoses of THC via a dry herb vaporiser enhanced his creativity and improved his writing proficiency.
Being a keen writer who often finds writing difficult, I was intrigued. Therefore, I decided to embark on an experiment. I would microdose cannabis everyday for one month.
My microdosing protocol
Unlike the author of the book, I included CBD alongside THC in my protocol, usually in a 1:1 ratio.
Mcterra only dosed once a day. However, I decided not to limit how many times a day I would dose. I did stop smoking joints and consuming cannabis in ways other than microdoses. I also experimented with dosing at different times of the day.
In order to microdose, I usually took one 5-10 second inhale on a dry herb vape packed with 50% THC flower and 50% CBD flower. I estimate that each dose was about 1-3mg of both THC and CBD. Additionally, I occasionally consumed a low-dose edible and single puffs on a joint.
My experience backs up that of Mcterra’s: I was more creative, words and ideas certainly came much easier to me, and my writing speed increased. However, I also noticed a few unexpected effects from microdosing cannabis.
Twelve, in fact. Here they are.
1. My verbal intelligence increased
I expected my writing creativity and word recall to increase when microdosing cannabis – and it did – but I did not think that my overall verbal intelligence would benefit so much.
During doses (and for some time afterward), I found that I could understand and explain things much easier than usual and I spoke more clearly and accurately. This helped improve my social confidence.
2. One dose before bed sent me straight to sleep
In the past, I’d smoke an entire joint before bed. This usually did the job of sending me off to the land of nod. Sometimes, however, It would stimulate my mind and I wouldn’t be able to turn it off for some time.
When I microdosed before bed, I would almost instantly feel calm and relaxed. The next thing I know, I’d be waking up in the morning wondering what happened.
3. I was less irritable
I’m not easily irritated generally. However, this was especially so when microdosed on THC and CBD. Things like my lap top breaking down, losing unsaved work, things like that. They no longer bothered me as much.
While I didn’t experience any severe physical during my month experiment, this study found that low doses of cannabis were more effective at relieving pain in cancer patients than high doses, which actually often worsened it, surprisingly.
4. I could focus easier and for longer
Along with improved creativity, my work benefited from microdosing thanks to an enhanced ability to focus. After a pull on my vape, I’d be in “the zone” for about two hours. It was like having tunnel vision where nothing else mattered but the work in front of me. It would help if what I was doing interested me (luckily I get to write and talk about cannabis all day).
5. I worried less
Small things that were playing on my mind didn’t matter as much when I microdosed cannabis. It makes the practice ideal for unwinding at the end of the day or for people who suffer from too much stress.
6. I looked at my phone less
Weirdly, when microdosing, I’d often not look at my phone for hours. Things like boredom and other triggers weren’t as, well… triggering. I found this study that supports this claim.
7. I had less cravings for caffeine, sugar and weed
I had less craving for things I typically crave like coffee and sugary foods. I also had less cravings for weed. I much consumed less coffee and sugar, while abstaining from high doses of THC was easy thanks to microdosing.
8. Vaping is more effective than edibles
For me, I found vaping more effective than low-dose edibles for microdosing. A hit on the vape hit me pretty much instantaneously, providing a nice, comforting feeling within seconds. Edibles I found difficult to work with as they have a long come-on period (up to two hours) and the effects were very subtle.
9. Working out was way more enjoyable
The added focus from microdosing made my workouts more enjoyable and effective. I was in-the-moment and because of that I felt stronger.
10. I prefer a microdose to a full dose
Following my month-long microdosing experiment, when given the choice, I would now usually choose a microdose over a larger dose, in most situations. I enjoy the feeling, as well as the enhanced cognition it gives me. Joints and dabs still have their place, but I feel a microdose will be my go-to from now on.
11. Microdosing cannabis isn’t that different an experience to microdosing mushrooms
I’ve also experimented with microdosing psilocybin-containing, and to be honest, they are not too dissimilar. Both were great from creativity, social confidence, and focus. There’s science suggesting that both also promote neurogenesis (the growth of new brain cells) – see this study on THC and this one on psilocybin.
12. There was no grogginess/hangover
Unlike when I would smoke a joint of dab, I experienced no grogginess the next morning after microdosing cannabis. I also didn’t get red eyes or “the munchies”.