Consuming Cannabis to Boost Creativity
Claims about using cannabis to boost creativity are not new. Maybe you’ve heard your favorite artists credit cannabis to improving and stimulating their creative process, or you have firsthand experience of feeling a burst of creative energy following a smoke sesh. But among the rumors and anecdotes, there is research drawing a connection between creativity and cannabis that is promising. Continue reading to learn the science behind cannabis and creativity and some quick-and-dirty tips on how to maximize a creative high.
The Science Behind Cannabis and Creativity
In order to understand how cannabis can impact your creative thinking processes, we must first understand how your body reacts to the consumption of cannabinoids. When ingested, THC binds to the body’s cannabinoid receptors in the central and peripheral nervous systems, which allows the compound to alter your mood, appetite, sleep patterns, etc. Your body’s cannabinoid receptors are the reason that cannabis induces the different effects that it does, but these receptors act as regulators within your body even if you are not a cannabis consumer.
Increased Dopamine Production
Above all else, THC stimulates dopamine production in your brain — creating a more heightened sense of euphoria as you continue to consume. This increase in dopamine levels tends to spark more creative thinking as well as improve focus and mental clarity.
Cerebral Blood Flow and Divergent Thinking
In addition to increasing dopamine levels, cannabis increases cerebral blood flow within the brain, resulting in more activity in your frontal lobe. Research suggests that the frontal lobe in your brain plays an important role in boosting creative thinking because it is the part of your brain that houses creative divergent thinking. Divergent thinking is what allows you to have new, innovative, outside of the box ideas. Increased activity in your brain’s frontal lobe creates a headspace that inspires divergent thinking.
How to Use Cannabis to Boost Creativity
Now that you know there is some research to suggest that cannabis does have a positive impact on creative thinking, you may be wondering how you can capitalize on these super cool benefits.
First of all, when looking to stimulate your creativity with cannabis, it is crucial that you start low and go slow when it comes to THC potency. Too strong of a dose of THC can actually have a negative impact on your ability to think creatively because it can slow down other brain functions essential to the creative thinking process. Even if you are experienced with cannabis and can handle a significant dosage of THC, it is still more beneficial to creatives to aim for a dose of THC that is just strong enough for the cannabinoid’s euphoric effects to take hold without becoming too overpowering.
Strains for Boosting Creativity
More often than not, sativa or sativa-dominant strains are going to be more suitable for creative processes. Indica or indica-dominant strains are typically more relaxing and sedative, while sativa strains are euphoric, uplifting, energizing, and cerebral (much more suited for your creative endeavors).
So there you have it: when used purposefully, cannabis can have a significant impact on creative thinking. The next time that you are suffering from a serious creative block, cannabis may be the perfect thing to pull you out of your artistic slump!