Safety Protocols

Ideally, the events of a therapeutic trip should be as predictable as possible, without any unwanted interruptions or obligations. You won’t want to be worrying about work or other demands while you’re tripping. Make sure you have plenty of time to immerse yourself in the duration of the trip, and give yourself at least a few hours afterward to integrate the experience. Patients should get a full night’s rest after tripping and before resuming daily routines. Rest after a psychedelic session aids in the effective integration of the experience.

Because psychedelics impair working memory, it is not uncommon for psychonauts to engage in dangerous acts without realizing the risk of doing so. For this reason, it may be useful to write down a list beforehand of prohibited actions during the trip, to help remind you of your boundaries. This list will differ depending on your personal tendencies and deep-rooted psychological vulnerabilities. Below are some suggestions:

  • do not compulsively re-ingest the drug , or take unplanned substances
  • do not play with objects with sharp points
  • do not draw blood; if injury occurs, calmly give it medical attention
  • do not play with fire
  • do not send emails, text messages, or place phone calls; do not tell people you are tripping
  • do not answer the door or phone
  • do not call the police or hospital and tell them you are tripping (if you believe it is necessary, ask a sober person to do it for you)
  • remind yourself that you will not be dying, but have taken a drug which may safely invoke psychological sensations of death and rebirth
  • do not operate a motor vehicles or heavy machinery
  • do not worry about daily routines, homework, or deadlines

If you are worried about forgetting these boundaries, take practical steps to remind yourself of them during the trip. Some examples might be: hide any sharp objects, leave a note on your front door reminding yourself to stay inside, turn off your cell phone and hide it in the back of a disused drawer, or write “you have taken a mind-altering drug, this is a temporary state” on the back of your hand.

Pressed pill with happy face