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How To Microdose: An In-Depth Guide

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in this article
  • Introduction
  • Start Low to Find Your Dose
  • Choose a Pattern
  • Have Patience
  • Start on Days Without Responsibilities
  • Incorporate into Your Routine
  • Have an Intention
  • Incorporate a New Habit for Your Well-being
  • Track Your Microdoses
  • Dose the Same Substance from the Same Batch
  • Manage Your Expectations
  • Final Thoughts

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Chemical Collective or any associated parties.

Introduction

Microdosing, as with the use of psychedelics in general, is on the rise. People are reporting all kinds of positive changes to their lives: increased creativity, thinking outside the box and alleviation from mental health problems such as depression and anxiety. 

Are you thinking about beginning microdosing?

If so, I got you. In this blog post, I’ll offer some tips to get started on your microdose journey. These are based on multiple personal microdose experiments and a decade of psychedelic use. My intention is to help you set up for a successful exploration of microdosing.

If you’d first like a better understanding of what microdosing is, head over to our other blog post: Microdosing – Everything We Know.

Without further ado, let’s dive in.

Start Low to Find Your Dose

When you begin microdosing, start on a very low dose. Then gradually work your way up until you find a good dose that works for you.

If utilizing dried psilocybin mushrooms, you might want to start with 0.01 grams. Then incrementally notch up 0.01 grams on each microdosing day until you notice any kind of effect. Then, when you notice an effect, go back down to the previous dose where you didn’t feel anything. This is your microdose baseline.

This is the idea of microdosing: it should be sub perceptual. Differences should be subtle, not glaringly obvious. It should be hard to tell any clear difference from your normal day to day state of consciousness. You definitely shouldn’t see the walls melting.

Choose a Pattern

There are a few different ways to dose. In general, dosing patterns include ‘on days’ and ‘off days’. ‘On days’ are days when you take a microdose, and ‘off days’ are days when you don’t. 

Common patterns include:

  • 1 day on, 2 days off
  • 5 days on, 2 days off
  • 1 day on, 1 day off

Once you have found your dose, you may like to choose a pattern to stick with for the course of your experiment. This will enable you to plan your days and your schedule. People’s reasons for using different patterns may vary. There is no right or wrong way, so just choose one to begin, and you can always adjust later if you want to.

Have Patience

Try to have patience with your microdosing experiment. Understand that it may take some time before you find your personalized dose. Once you have, it may also take some time for you to begin feeling any positive effects. Some people report that it takes weeks of microdosing before they notice anything, so just try and take a longer-term view.

A microdosing experiment takes a bit of time and effort upfront. This includes preparing doses, planning your dosing days, finding your dose, and incorporating it into your routine

It can be helpful to consider the time as an investment to make an experiment.  Consider that if you find a microdosing protocol that works well for you, it might honestly just change your life, and you can continue using it afterwards in the future. Then, if you never feel any positive effects, you can know that you gave it a decent go, and it just wasn’t for you.

With this in mind, it can be helpful to commit to at least one month of microdosing. Firstly, allow some time to find your personalized dose. This itself may take a number of microdosing days, depending how often you are dosing. Once you have found your dose, give it a few weeks before making any judgments about how it’s going.

Start on Days Without Responsibilities

When you’re beginning, plan your microdoses on days when you don’t have any responsibilities. At least none that can’t be avoided or reshuffled. There are many stories out there of people having surprisingly large doses and then having to call in sick for work, or cancel other plans. It’s happened to me, too!

So whilst you’re figuring out your dose, try to aim for days where it wouldn’t be as big of a deal. So you know, if there’s a huge presentation that you’ve got to deliver on a certain day, maybe don’t plan an initial microdose for that day. Better to do it on the weekend, or maybe on a day where you have flexibility and are working at home.

Once you’ve found your dose and you know how you react to it then you can have your microdoses on other days when you feel more confident.

Incorporate into Your Routine

As with establishing any new habit, it can be very beneficial to establish microdosing as part of your routine. Having a fixed point in your daily routine is a simple and effective way to do this.

When I microdose, I incorporate it into my morning routine. I take it at the end of breakfast with tea or coffee. Finishing breakfast is my cue to take the microdose. This is a simple rule of habit change: setting up cues. 

So you can choose a behavior you already do everyday, and use that as your cue to take a microdose. You might also like to take it with your morning coffee, with your other supplements, after you shower, or any other fixed point in your routine. You might simply choose a time of day as your cue, and can set an alarm to remind you. You might even experiment with taking it before bed at night as I know some people have done.

You also want to make it easy to microdose so if you’re dealing with scales you might weigh doses out ahead of time or put them into capsules. The last time I was microdosing, I would pre-weigh the dose the night before and then take it in the morning.

Have an Intention

Before you begin microdosing, think about this: What is it that brings you to microdosing? Why do you want to try this, or psychedelics in general? Are you looking to improve your mental health? Are you looking to improve your creativity? Are you looking for an alleviation of an emotional condition?

Having some clarity around your intention this can help bring some purpose to your microdose experiment. This can help with motivation and keeping an eye on the long game. Furthermore, it can also help you to be more mindful of any changes or progress that you may be making in this area. This can help to gauge if and how well microdosing is working for you.

Incorporate a New Habit for Your Well-being

As has been said by many a practitioner: don’t expect microdosing to do all the work for you. To improve your chances of positive change with microdosing, it helps if you’re trying to make a change in your life pro-actively by introducing another hybrid habit with your microdosing habit.

This might be doing something else that is good for your mental or physical health. For example, it might be incorporating five minutes of mindfulness meditation into your routine. This could even be when you take your microdose. It might be incorporating a new exercise regimen. It could also be a journaling habit, or improving your brain health by learning a new skill or language.

The adoption of a new good habit may well also be supported by microdosing. This is because psychedelics have been shown to increase neuroplasticity. This increases an individual’s ability to effectively rewire the brain and create new neural pathways. The brain is in a more plastic and flexible state, so making new connections between things is easier. This includes adopting new habits of thought and behavior.

Although there is not yet any solid science on the effects of microdosing on neuroplasticity, it has been well established with psychedelics at higher doses. It is believed that microdosing may also be have the same effect of neuroplasticity.

Therefore, incorporating a new positive habit change alongside microdosing gives an opportunity to make it easier with other habit changes. New associations can be formed in the brain and this includes responses to and development of new habits.

Track Your Microdoses

When you start out microdosing, it can be hugely valuable to keep a log and to track your experiences.

A log can provide you with valuable personalized data on dosing and subjective experience, letting you gain more of an awareness on how microdosing is affecting you. 

A simple way of doing this is by creating a table where you note down a few key pieces of information related to your microdose. This can be done on a sheet or paper or in a journal.

Information to gather should include: the day and date, the dose, time of the dose, and how it was consumed. You might also include any other information that seems relevant, like if you took it after exercising or if you took it with breakfast. Then include a section for any notes on your experience. This might include, for example, ‘I feel a little bit lightheaded’, or ‘minor tingling in my fingers’, ‘feeling creative today!’ or ‘woozy and tired’. Add timestamps where appropriate so you can see where any effects came in relative to when you took your dose.

Whatever it is, take a note. Initially this will help you to calibrate your dosage.

Later on, it will be really helpful for you to look back on and enable you to look over your records for your microdosing experiment.

I also recommend including a space for a  summary at the end of the day where you can jot down anything notable about your experience of the day.  This takes literally just 60 seconds to do and will be valuable to gain that personalized data. At a glance, you’ll be able to see how your days have been over the period of weeks and months.

Dose the Same Substance from the Same Batch

When you are conducting your microdosing experiment, be sure to use the same material from the same batch. For example, don’t switch between different batches or species of mushrooms, or switch between substances like mushrooms and LSD. Different mushrooms, substances and batches can vary in potency and strength, so working with a single batch will help with more consistent dosing and for you to gain a better understanding of your overall experience.

 This will also help to bring consistency to your experience and reliability of your results.

Manage Your Expectations

Many people come to psychedelics with high hopes and big dreams. They dream that they’re going to become a creative powerhouse overnight, that their anxiety will disappear over the course of a few weeks, or that their life will suddenly become miraculous.

There’s a lot of hype around psychedelics at the moment so these types of expectations can be understandable. However, it’s important to remember  that psychedelics are not a quick fix, a miracle cure or a silver bullet. In nearly all cases, it still takes time and effort for one to make meaningful and lasting change with microdosing.

Although even though many people have credited microdosing with changing their lives, this doesn’t happen for everyone. So try to treat it like an experiment and be prepared for this outcome: that maybe microdosing might not actually work for you, but that you’re giving it a go and you can find out through your own experience.

Final Thoughts

Embarking on a microdosing journey is a personal exploration that requires careful consideration and commitment. The key is to start low on carefully selected days, find your baseline dose through a gradual process, then choose a dosing pattern that aligns with your lifestyle. Remember that patience is crucial throughout the experiment, as it may take time to discover your personalized dose and begin noticing positive effects. Microdosing is not a panacea, but a tool for personal exploration and growth.

If you’d like to read about a personal microdosing experiment I held recently, you can do so at my personal blog here One Month Microdosing Psilocybin: My Report.

I further explore and ive examples from some of the tips in this article.

I hope these tips help to guide you on your microdosing journey.

Stay safe, microdose mindfully.

John Robertson | Community Blogger at Chemical Collective | mapsofthemind.com

John is one of our community bloggers here at Chemical Collective. If you’re interested in joining our blogging team and getting paid to write about subjects you’re passionate about, please reach out to David via email at blog@chemical-collective.com

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4 Comments
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King_Petr
4 months ago

Fantastic, helped me so much. Im glad there are people talking about this.

Vanessa Stern
4 months ago

Very helpful, thanks! Just wanted to start a mushroom microdosing-journey soon, so this showed up for the perfect time!

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