Will Burns

Unleash Creativity Blog

Scientific studies that help us unleash our most human attribute: creativity.

Finally, A Research Study About The Effects Of Microdosing LSD

Finally, real researchers are researching LSD.

Finally, real researchers are researching LSD.


Two years ago I wrote a piece for Forbes entitled, "LSD Microdosing Deserves More Serious Research." Well, it turns out a research foundation in England is finally doing just that. The Beckley Foundation is dedicated to scientific research into psychoactive substances.

This is a very big deal because there are countless stories about how microdosing LSD can improve creativity. But right now they are only stories.

what is microdosing?

Microdosing means taking a tiny, tiny amount of LSD - like 1/10 of a normal "trippy" dose - every four days. People who do so have reported increased clarity, increased productivity, better mood and a better ability to put disparate thoughts together (creativity).

Ding ding!

Let me say before I go any further I am not condoning any illegal behavior, nor do I recommend that you even try this.

But you should know that people have reported "microdosing" LSD and other psychedelics with great creative results, including increased productivity, increased creativity, and a general feeling of "better living."

There are reports of people dramatically improving the work they do, the sports they play, and everything in-between. Martijn Schirp, an Amsterdam native who has been experimenting with microdosing put it this way in an interview with LiveScience

It's like the coffee to wake up the mind-body connection. When I notice it is working, depending on the dosage, time seems to be slowing down a bit, everything seems covered with a layer of extra significance.

My speculation is that these microdoses replicate, and/or magnify existing, attention-deficit disorder (ADD), in that things that may have seemed irrelevant before now take on "added significance." As such, we are more likely to consider more thoughts, and then more thoughts are able to collide in our thought process - and then boom, more creativity.

But, as I said above, to date the evidence of LSD's power at a microdosing level has been anecdotal.

you can support the Beckley Foundation's research

Here are the research intentions from the Beckley Foundation site:

"The Beckley/Imperial Research Programme will soon undertake the world’s first scientific investigation into the effects of microdosing on mood (including depression, anxiety, and vitality), cognitive functions, creativity and general wellbeing.

Led by Amanda Feilding, this unprecedented and highly original study will use the ancient Chinese game of Go to measure the unique type of cognitive enhancement that microdosing is anecdotally reported to produce: insight. Performance in this game relies largely on intuitive pattern recognition and participants will compete against a Go-playing AI, which will assess their performance using the standardised Go ranking system. Mood and cognitive function will be measured with well-established methods and the latest brain imaging technology will reveal the neurological mechanisms behind the effects of microdosing. The safety and tolerability of LSD microdosing  will also be evaluated."

You can read more about it here. I am currently trying to get in touch with Ms. Feilding for a follow up Forbes piece so I can get more clarity on the research methodology (if not volunteer as a subject). Stay tuned for more on that.

But very exciting to finally see actual researchers studying the effects of this potentially breakthrough drug. I honestly can't wait to see the results.

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Tini Grails  martini glasses, where a great martini is all in the glass.

Tini Grails martini glasses, where a great martini is all in the glass.


Will Burns is the CEO of Ideasicle, a Forbes Contributor and owner of Tini Grails martini glasses.