Psychedelics as therapy? West Michigan author pleads for further research and acceptance

Humans have used psychedelics like magic mushrooms, acid, or ecstasy in various ways for a long time. Although drugs remain illegal federally in the United States, interest in psychedelics continues to grow, as does the movement to normalize their use – especially for therapeutic purposes.

Last September, the city of Ann Arbor decriminalized psychedelic plants and mushrooms, and one of the organizations behind the effort now aims to decriminalize them statewide. And, as psychedelic use becomes a bit more common, some entrepreneurs are building careers by educating and mentoring people on the practice of microdosing.

Western Michigander Paul Austin, the author of Psychedelic Microdosing: A Practical Guide To Improving Your Life, says he believes psychedelics are increasingly accepted as a therapeutic tool for mental health problems. He is also an advocate for using them in small doses to achieve what he calls “best results” in your work or life.

“It’s really about looking: how can microdosing help in leadership development? How can that contribute to optimal well-being, with things like fluidity and creativity? Austin said. “And what does he say about people, as they start working with psychedelics in terms of microdoses and higher doses, how does that change the job they choose to even pursue?”

Clinical trials studying the effects of taking psychedelics to treat conditions such as depression, anxiety or addiction have increased over the past decade. For example, in a study from the Johns Hopkins University Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research last year, scientists found that adults with major depression had an improvement in their symptoms after receiving doses of the hallucinogenic compound psilocybin. present in some types of fungi.

But despite the growing research and interest in psychedelics, there is still a lot we don’t know about them and how they can uniquely affect people. Scientists and doctors point out that while clinical trials may show benefits, participants in these studies take psychedelics in carefully controlled environments – not without supervision. And in some cases, especially for people with heart problems or with a family history of psychosis, psychedelics can pose a risk to physical or mental health.

Austin emphasizes the importance of working with a guide when using psychedelics for therapeutic or recreational purposes. He offers a coaching package for people interested in microdosing through The Third Wave, an online resource he created for people who want to learn more about psychedelic use. Austin says a trainer can help people navigate a microdosing or higher dosing experience.

“Their goal is to provide a mirror, to help guide someone into a deeper self-knowledge, to become more cohesive, to heal certain traumas that might be stored in the unconscious and subconscious, and to do so. in a way that guides someone for better results, ”he said.

Austin says clinically trained professionals are the best guides for patients looking to use psychedelics to help with a mental health issue. For people interested in non-clinical outcomes like expanding creativity, Austin says a therapist or psychiatrist may not be necessary, but he recommends a guide with strong listening skills and knowledge. integrative well-being.

“Often the initial process of psychedelics is healing. There are often, for many, if not all, elements to explore, shadow elements to explore – what needs to be healed, what needs to come out of the subconscious and the unconscious, ”he said. “But for those of us who have done this or had other practices, these are phenomenal tools for these expanded states of being, which are so connected, so beautiful.

To learn more, listen to the full conversation above.

This article was written by Stateside Production Assistant Nell Ovitt.


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