We often find ourselves stuck in destructive patterns of thought and behavior. The mind gets trapped inside of itself and we feel as though there’s no escape. The question is, How do we get unstuck?
Research shows that the psychedelic molecule ketamine can temporarily alter the way we experience the world around us. This brief but profound mental journey can catalyze change by allowing someone to peer into reality from a different vantage point.
Believe it or not, psychedelics have been used by cultures around the world for thousands of years to promote physical and mental wellbeing. Traditional healers have recognized the potential of these molecules for an incredibly long time, but a lot of this traditional wisdom was pushed out of mainstream culture because of colonization.
Psychedelics made a comeback in the 1960s as millions of people were turned on to them. These molecules served as tools to challenge social norms, allowing people to step outside of their preconceived notions of society. At the same time, clinicians were successfully using psychedelics to understand and treat a wide variety of mental disorders such as addiction, anxiety, and depression.
Unfortunately, due to increasingly widespread use of psychedelics and growing fear of their uncontrolled consumption, this research was shut down in the 1970s. Restrictive drug laws made it nearly impossible to study psychedelics, and people around the world who could have benefitted from these molecules were left without any reasonable way to access them.
Public opinion has shifted and researchers have once again turned to psychedelics as potential solutions to many of the mental health problems that plague society. What both the early research and new findings show us is that psychedelics are most effective in combination with psychotherapy.
The psychedelic experience can be unpredictable and sometimes quite scary. Experienced professionals can help to minimize the anxiety felt during the experience while maximizing the benefits that come afterwards. By helping people establish an open mindset and creating a comfortable environment, therapists make sure that the people they work with have productive experiences.
Psychedelics help to change the mind, putting it in a position to escape its destructive patterns and regain control. Psychotherapy then helps us to use the insights gained during a psychedelic experience to ensure that this sense of control is enduring. Psychedelics are some of the most powerful tools we can use to get unstuck.