Take a pill psychedelic and feel better?

Take a pill and feel better!

As Westerners that’s what we’ve been conditioned to do. No muss, no fuss! Just take the pill and be done with it! 

Of course, as we know for these “mood managing” medications, the trade-offs are the side effects. The side effect reported to me most frequently is the narrowing of the whole emotional spectrum.

Yes, the meds reduce the intensity of the difficult emotions but also blunt the “positive” ones, which can lead to a perception of reduced emotional depth. It’s very disconcerting to those experiencing it. So they may look for another way out of feeling bad (and often find their way to me).

Rinse and Repeat

The latest version of this “take a pill and feel better” is: 

take a psychedelic and feel better!

No muss, no fuss! Just take the psychedelic and be done with it! 

Sure you’ll need to invest time for the “going in” and ride the wave for, depending on the substance, anywhere from 15 minutes (DMT) to 12 hours (Ibogaine). A few hours for psilocybin and LSD. 

But just like the pills – they can give a new lease on life to many, but can also be a slippery slope of losing what you’ve gained.

The effects of psychedelics – or the “durability” of the improvement – can wane making it necessary to “top off” or refresh or however you’d want to describe it.

For example, repeated treatments with ketamine (not technically a psychedelic but often embraced as one) are necessary to keep depression, anxiety and PTSD at bay.

Folks can feel relief in as little as 24 hours. But how long does the relief last? Usually the old upsetting feelings begin creeping back in weeks to months, which means it’s time for a top-off. Of course, for the countless ketamine clinics popping up around the world, pricey repeated treatments are necessary (which make for a very lucrative business model).

Another example is psilocybin, there’s a lack of research of long-term effects but here’s one that reports reduced symptoms of major depression lasting up to 6 weeks. So theoretically, every 45 days, you’re looking to repeat.

Desperation as the driving force

I know the feeling of crippling anxiety and the abyss of depression. Personally, I lived with it for decades – it was the result of childhood trauma. And, I know, if there’s some relief to gain, a person will keep going back to the well for the “elixir” that quells or numbs the emotional pain.

So now it’s psychedelics… take a pill and feel better… and another, and another, and another. And while psychedelics offer various benefits, regular use may never get to the deep core of why a person is feeling bad. 

Getting Woo-Woo

This is vitally important because, speaking colloquially, we need to pull the trauma out by its roots. And, in order to do this, we need to unravel the threads of our difficult emotions to reveal our invisible inner life – that world of the unknown where all our undying hopes and dreams come from. It’s the realm of the unconscious.

With psychedelics we may, in fleeting minutes and hours, be in touch with this world. But, make no mistake, it takes concerted, committed effort to move into this world unknown, explore it and come out the other side where true permanent healing awaits us.

Yes, this is spiritual work. 

What I have learned as an emotions and yogic therapist is that regardless of using psychedelics, first and foremost we must face the real issues in our life, the triggers and limiting behaviors. Within a carefully crafted framework, psychedelics can be an adjunctive tool to help us do this.  But letting the substances take the lead poses the risk of becoming habituated to the momentary euphoria or insights acquired in altered states.

Leaning on external psychedelic experiences can thwart the development of our emotional resilience, our coping mechanisms and ultimately our path to personal flourishing. As a facilitator of Emotional Liberation, I do include the option of microdosing psilocybin – as many of my students and participants find that it enhances their inner healing journey and promotes an elevated state of well-being.

Yet, in this role, the plant medicine doesn’t dictate the course of action. Rather, it’s with us to assist in achieving a profound awareness of your emotional patterns. This awareness empowers a person to completely reframe their way of living, facilitating the navigation of life with grace and perseverance, both now and always.

If what I’m saying is resonating for you and you’d like to learn more about the Emotional Liberation program, I invite you to join the interest list here.  A new masterclass course will be starting this April. It’s in 8-week live modules and stretches over a year – as that’s the deep dive it takes to overcome challenging feelings to find a path toward emotional growth and resilience. Much more to come on this. 

With Love,


P.S. If you’re curious as to whether this program is right for you, let’s have a chat. You can set a time to talk with me here.

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