Marijuana Creativity: Can Cannabis Increase Imagination?
What if you could feel more creative whenever you wanted?
Many people simply look to marijuana as a way to feel good. But it turns out that marijuana may be an easy and organic way of increasing your imagination.
Wondering if marijuana creativity is real and how it can help your imagination? Keep reading to learn all about it!
The Chicken and the Egg
We have a kind of shared cultural mythology about getting high and getting creative. And much of that mythology comes from Hollywood.
We often see actors and directors such as Kevin Smith or Seth Rogen openly sing the virtues of weed. And because they are very successful, it’s easy to see the potential link between marijuana and creativity.
However, we must question whether this is a “chicken and the egg” issue. Did marijuana transform them into more creative people? Or were they already creative people who simply enjoyed getting high?
This doesn’t mean marijuana cannot make you more creative. But when it comes to our cultural myths about cannabis as a creativity super drug, you should take it with a grain of salt.
There is not a lot of research on marijuana and creativity. In fact, most of what we know comes from only 2 studies: a British study from 2012 and a Dutch study from 2015.
So, did they find a link between marijuana and creativity? The answer is “yes and no.”
It turns out weed can help one aspect of creative thinking (more info on this below). But these results were not universal across the board.
Just like the basic experience of getting high, everyone’s body may react to the drug in a different way. The fact that so many may have different reactions to getting high is part of what makes this so difficult to study.
Two Kinds of Creativity
When we ask “does marijuana affect creativity,” we need to do something important: we need to actually define what creative thinking looks like.
The Dutch study attempted to define such thinking. And according to them, creativity boils down to “divergent thinking” and “convergent thinking.”
Divergent thinking is all about trying to come up with multiple solutions to a challenge in front of you. Think of it like brainstorming back in school and how some students were better at coming up with a bunch of ideas than others.
Convergent thinking is all about looking at a handful of choices and figuring out the best course of action. Think of it like taking multiple choice exams and how some students were better at narrowing down the choices than others.
Weed and Creativity
Now that we have creative thinking defined, you may be asking where the weed comes in. The truth is that the jury is still out on that one.
Analysis of the studies has found that marijuana may boost divergent thinking. This may not be a surprise: many people are convinced they are coming up with many great ideas while they are high!
Unfortunately, a similar analysis has found that marijuana may actually reduce convergent thinking. This may be why some marijuana users don’t actually do much while they are high!
You might think that the improved divergent thinking and weakened convergent thinking cancel each other out. But there are other factors to consider when it comes to improved creativity.
More Than a Feeling?
When we’re trying to figure out if marijuana and creativity are connected, there is one surefire way to do this: see if marijuana users are regularly creating quality work.
As we said, cannabis may boost our divergent thinking. So it’s not uncommon to come up with lots of great ideas while high.
Furthermore, cannabis can help your body feel better. Being relaxed and pain-free can help you feel more creative (and you can read more now about marijuana as a treatment option).
But there’s a big difference between coming up with good ideas and following through on them. Next time you’re partaking, try to write down some of your good ideas and then turn them into a reality!
Tolerance and Regularity
Even if we can say marijuana generally makes more people creative, the statement won’t apply to everyone. For example, some factors affecting this are your tolerance for cannabis and the regularity of your use.
For example, that same Dutch study found that a little cannabis can go a long way. While small doses could boost your divergent thinking, larger doses actually decreased it, making you less creative.
Depending on your tolerance, a “small dose” may be very small indeed. If you’re not careful, it’s easy to take too much and actually hurt your creativity.
Additionally, the study focused on participants that regularly got high. Their weed habits affect their dopamine levels, so those who don’t get high very often may experience very different results.
The TLC of THC
Older people tend to be wary of modern marijuana. In fact, you’ll often hear them talk about how modern weed is very dangerous because it is stronger than what they smoked back in the day.
While we definitely wouldn’t say “dangerous,” they do have a point about strength. Modern cannabis is actually higher (no pun intended) in THC than it has ever been.
If you just want to mellow out, this is a good thing. You’re getting more bang for your buck whenever you make a cannabis purchase!
But remember when we said that high doses are likelier to hurt your creativity? This stronger cannabis means it’s easier to take a stronger dose of THC than you intended.
We recommend experimenting with edibles to control exactly how much THC you consume. And you can conduct your own experiments in how it affects your creativity.
Marijuana Creativity: The Bottom Line
Now you know the secrets of marijuana creativity. But do you know how to find out even more about everyone’s favorite plant?
We bring you awesome articles about your world every single week. To learn more about marijuana, check out our glossary of key terms today!