Why Weed Makes You More Creative

Recently on How to Do the Pot, we talk with an all-women band who started playing music for fun & turned it into a career as working musicians. Cannabis helps them rekindle their love of music in spite of COVID’s shutdown of live shows and the intense pressures of the music industry. Sparking ideas is one of the superpowers of cannabis and in today’s High Five, we dig into what we know about why the plant helps heighten creativity. If the past 15 months have worn you down, I hope a little weed with your favorite playlist can lighten the load for you too. ❤️ Ellen


1. What is creativity? The most popular TED talk ever is about creativity, and its creator Sir Ken Robinson believes that creativity is putting your imagination to work – he defines it as “applied imagination”. David Kelley, founder of the design school at Stanford, considers creativity a mindset we can all practice. His book Creative Confidence is a reminder that you don’t have to be an artist to live a creative life. 

2. Science & weed. Since cannabis remains a Schedule 1 drug, most of the research in the U.S. is focused on its harms. We hear many, many stories of women enjoying cannabis for its creative benefits. Hopefully the rapid pace of cannabis legalization will lead to increased funding for research on how the plant helps people feel more creative. 

3. “Symptoms” of creativity. A 2012 study focused on predicting creativity showed that cannabis produces “symptoms”, considered primary to creative thinking. What happens? Consuming cannabis can lead to connecting seemingly unrelated concepts, which leads to breaking free from ordinary thinking, which increases the likelihood of generating novel ideas or associations. 

4. Stay present. People consuming cannabis often report feeling more present in the moment. Studies going back to 1970 have shown that cannabis enhances the appreciation of music by helping people to be more focused on the sounds. This focused attention requires less mental energy, so it’s easier to listen and to relax. 

5. What’s the right dose? We recommend the same advice that many cannabis experts share – if you’re consuming THC, start low and slow. Finding the cannabis that brings out your creative side may take some experimentation. Listen to episode 59 to learn about microdosing, or taking small amounts of cannabis to improve your mood, increase creativity, or to combat stress.

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