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Picture yourself in a boat on a river…

You don’t exactly remember how or when you got there, but you know you went willingly.

The skies, suddenly marmalade, gave no warning about their transformation. Millions of sounds come to you sharp and vivid. And there you float, right in the middle of it.

Are you ready to hop into the boat? Maybe it’s your first time, or maybe you are an experienced tripper who wants to get their mind straight before embarking again. In any case, here’s what to expect on your date with Lucy.

THE TWO SIDES OF THE TAB

Before taking LSD, you should know a couple of things.

The first is to know and understand the nature of a psychedelic. Psychedelics take over your brain, and LSD is a potent psychedelic. There will be some funny business going on inside your skull. You need to be prepared to see, hear, and believe things that you didn’t expect.

Second, despite the psychedelic nature, preventative measures against uncomfortable effects are possible. Taking LSD doesn’t mean you are helpless and completely at the whim of the substance. It shouldn’t frighten you. With a little bit of preparation and awareness, you will significantly improve your chances at a positive, enjoyable trip.

Here's what you should expect when microdosing

If you’re interested in leveraging altered states for healing and purpose, then you’re probably interested in microdosing. And more importantly, you probably want to learn how to do it in a safe, effective, and valuable way.

That’s why we put together this detailed, step-by-step course.

In it you’ll learn everything you need to know about what to expect from microdosing different substances, including how to prepare and administer your substance of choice, how you’re likely to feel during the experience, and what you’re likely to feel like afterwards.

Interested in a legal psychedelic experience in Amsterdam? Click here for more details. 

COMPANY

You want to trip with good company. Now, there’s an important distinction to make here: good company doesn’t necessarily mean close friends. There are some close friends of mine that I wouldn’t want to trip with, simply due to the nature of their personality and energy. It doesn’t mean they are horrible people. However, some people possess traits that are more acid-compatible.

If you’re tripping in a group, and are unsure about your compatibility with the other members, you should look for these types of people. From my experience, you want to trip with someone stable, calm, and aware. Those who handle confusion and uncertainty well are usually the best at dealing with LSD.

It’s a big plus if you don’t mind speaking nonsense with them, and even better if you can hold periods of silence with each other. While tripping, there’s a good chance you will find yourself engaged in a captivating conversation, only to realize midway through that you have no clue what you are trying to say.

There is also the option of tripping with a guide or shaman. If it is your first time, you feel very nervous, and a guide or shaman is available, I would recommend it. Just make sure they are experienced and trustworthy. I would avoid tripping in a group without any active “babysitter.” A group of people all on LSD are susceptible to the quick and uncontrolled spread of negative emotions.

“You want to trip with good company… and good company doesn’t necessarily mean close friends.”

ENVIRONMENT

Trip somewhere where you will feel comfortable. Different elements contribute to comfort. Beauty is a big one. Every time I’ve been in an ugly place, it has deeply bothered me. A dirty, unkempt, or uninspired place is more likely to influence your trip negatively. LSD often enhances your perception of things, not just through your senses, but through your emotions and feelings. So somewhere that usually doesn’t bother you much may have a surprisingly strong effect on your emotions while on LSD. Take this into account when you are planning your trip.

Nature is the gold standard. A house where you feel comfortable is good, too. But noisy places, with cars zooming by or lots of people walking around, has a good chance of turning things sour. You may suddenly feel paranoid or agitated by the presence of strangers. Even if you are comfortable with large crowds, the distractions often take away from your ability to meditate upon deeper insights during and after the trip.

SECURITY

Feeling secure is vital when setting up an enjoyable trip.

Your emotions will be volatile and unpredictable. If you don’t know where you are, if you feel unsafe, or if some unwelcome situation from home or work comes up, your confusion and uncertainty will blindside you. LSD can make your emotions tough to manage.

So get your affairs straight before embarking on an LSD trip. Have a plan. Put some thought into it. You don’t need to schedule your activities minute by minute. You won’t stick to a schedule anyways. Just keep yourself away from situations that are unnecessarily stressful or dangerous. In a way, you want to carve out an isolated environment for yourself, untainted by the ongoing stresses of daily life. Finally, turn off your phone.

Click here to learn everything you need to know about LSD

OTHER PREPARATIONS

It is common to lose your appetite for the duration of the LSD trip, which can last up to 12 hours. It’s smart to eat beforehand and to drink water before, during, and after. I’ve found that I start to get hungry during the tail end of the trip, and love to grab a big meal to enjoy while still feeling the effects. Junk food is appalling, smoothies have been disappointing, and Indian food is my reigning favorite.

I also love to trip around a fire, so I always try to trip where open fires are allowed. Camping by the beach is the perfect situation for me. You can have a swim in the ocean, enjoy plenty of open space, and at night, get a clear view of the stars. Just make sure to have enough clothes and blankets if you are going to camp or trip outside during the evening.

DROPPING THE TAB

LSD is taken sublingually, via paper or gel tab. Sometimes it’s dropped on a sugar cube or piece of candy, and other times the pure liquid substance is administered. Whatever the method, LSD is quite tasteless. Paper tabs are my least favorite, because of the taste of ink and the texture of the disintegrating paper.

It’s common to hold to tab under your tongue for a while. People have recommended me keep it down there for as long as an hour. I’ve also tried simply swallowing the tabs without holding them under my tongue at all, and in my experience, it makes little difference.

Read our guide on how to Microdose with LSD

ONSET, DURATION, AND PEAKS

An LSD trip usually lasts anywhere from 6-12 hours. I always feel a sort of buzz as it comes on, which flows through my clammy hands and tense jaws. The onset comes with a surge of energy and an increase in sensory perception. Still, despite knowing what to look out for when the LSD comes on, you will not be ready. There is an essential moment of surprise when you realize the acid has taken effect. This feeling signals that you have reached your first peak.

Peaks just describe periods during your trip when the effects feel stronger. Hallucinations, hysteria, laughing fits, and other uncontrollable experiences will happen during peaks. In between the peaks you get your moments of deep thought, self-observation, and clarity. An LSD trip is just a long ride up, down, and through these peaks. I wouldn’t worry about trying to distinguish peaks from non-peaks while tripping, though. Peaks and non-peaks are more things you think about after the trip, not during it.

THE EFFECTS OF LSD

The effects of LSD vary. Your sensory perceptions change in a few different ways. I rarely hallucinate on LSD, but I always see warping images and very vibrant, glowing colors. A feeling of synesthesia, or of sensory inputs mixing with each other, is also likely. For instance, while tripping, I once realized I had been masticating and moving my fingers while watching the sunset. I really could taste and feel the texture in the red, orange, and blue colors of the sky.

There is a very cerebral aspect of an LSD trip, as well. You will think differently, almost as if you have another personality. LSD trips get very deep. But taking acid won’t guarantee that you will gain wisdom. Sometimes, you might only experience the feeling of realization, without truly realizing anything at all. It’s very common to think you are on to some huge breakthrough, only to completely lose it.

However, it’s also common to gain some real insights. During one trip, I started thinking about a personal problem that was bothering me at the time. I realized that I shouldn’t avoid thinking about it and that I could confront this issue while tripping. Before allowing myself to grow too anxious, I pictured the problem as a knot. I thought of all the compounding factors bothering me, and I imagined all the worst case scenarios. The knot grew and tightened. And then, I simply untied the knot and felt at ease. I still use this method in my daily life when I get caught up in anxiety.

There are also challenging, uncomfortable effects of LSD. You might feel paranoid, anxious, or flat out scared. If you can’t outthink these unpleasant emotions, try changing your environment or talking to someone to distract yourself. Another disarmingly simple tactic is to smile.

Though proper preparation helps you avoid these “bad trips,” they can still happen despite the most careful precautions.

Read our full guide on how to avoid “Bad Trips.”

BAD TRIPS

Your feelings of anxiety and discomfort might only increase after trying to stop them. The effects might go even further, and you could totally lose your self-control. I’ve had a trip where I ended up walking the streets shouting nonsense and even got into a shoving match with a group of people. I had no control over myself, and looking back on it, it’s as if someone else took over my body.

People usually call these “bad trips”. Take the steps beforehand to avoid putting yourself or others at harm. If nobody is hurt, these bad trips can be very edifying. They give you a healthy respect for the substance, allow you to appreciate your sanity and self-control, and expand your scope of experience. The best thing you can do if you have a bad trip is to reflect upon and learn from it. Take bad trips seriously, but don’t blame yourself.

Bad trips happen. If you only have fun when you take LSD, you don’t fully understand the substance.

Here's what you should expect when microdosing

If you’re interested in leveraging altered states for healing and purpose, then you’re probably interested in microdosing. And more importantly, you probably want to learn how to do it in a safe, effective, and valuable way.

That’s why we put together this detailed, step-by-step course.

In it you’ll learn everything you need to know about what to expect from microdosing different substances, including how to prepare and administer your substance of choice, how you’re likely to feel during the experience, and what you’re likely to feel like afterwards.

AFTERWARDS

After your LSD trip, you may feel strangely bland. A headache or slight hangover feeling is possible, but this is likely due to a lack of sleep, and unrelated to the actual acid. The “hangover” from taking LSD is more like a readjustment to normality. It’s an opportune time to reflect on your experience and appreciate your sobriety.

Whenever I trip on LSD, I always allow myself an ample amount of time before my next trip. Personally, I wait at least three or four months. I don’t base this timeframe on any rule or law, rather on my specific tolerance and interest in psychedelics. Depending on your clock, I’d only recommend you give yourself enough time to learn from your experience, to get bored again with what people call “normal life,” and to grow open to the full possibilities of this substance called LSD.

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Comments

  1. Its a really nice article. the only thing you were missing, which is very important for a guide on a substance like LSD, is a warning to test substances. It would have been a good idea to advertise good test kits and teach how to use them, explain what impure lsd is like and what to do if you get some.

  2. Wonderful article. As a seasoned taker of LSD. Your discription made me really smile and evoked cool memories.. ps. I’m 72 years on this planet.. may I say ” It’s a grand job your doing” much love always..

  3. I am about to take LSD for the first time ever tomorrow and I think this is probably the best article I have read so far. It simply explains what can happen, and talks about bad trips as if they are something normal without scaring you and actually telling you that you should embrace them and learn from them. I myself suffer anxiety (rarely) and have a history of depression which worries me a bit about what might happen when I do it tomorrow, however, the sitter that will be there is the person I trust the most.
    Will definitely take a look at what else this blog has to offer.
    Thanks for the lovely article.

    • Hi, just wondering how was your first trip without a sitter? I’m thinking to take it soon and also solo so I’m curious.

      • nah dont do it alone i did it back in ocotober and im only 17 so i snuck out at like 1 am to take it and i was with my friend having a great time but then idk why but my brain told me (sounds crazy if you never did lsd before) to run away from him so i ran as fast as i could for about a mile and went to a diffrent park and i was by my self and it was chill for a little but then i felt really lonely, so i decided to sneak back into my house and now it was about 5am so i went to sneak back in but i noticed the lights were on so i was like shit my moms up so i tried to get back in but my mom was like no u wanna go out so bad stay out and nbs i legit wanted to kill my self but then i linked w my friend again and instantly felt better

      • I had a bad trip when I did it alone because I was freaked out about what could happen and that did happen and I got messed up so never do it alone because I ended up in a different state, ps I was 13

  4. I found this to be the most informative and balanced article that I have read on the subject. I intend to try LSD for the first time within the next few weeks and this has prepared me well. Unfortunately I won’t have a sitter but I know that I will be fine and enjoy the raising of my consciousness. Thank you.

  5. This is a valid, well thought out, and extremely relatable article. I respect everything written here because it is completely true.

  6. This was really helpful. I am about to have my first time and I am super nervous about it. But after reading this and know what to expect, I feel calm and relived. I’m still nervous, but not as much as I was.

  7. hi guys, i have tried mushrooms a few times in the recommended mcKenna dose around 5g and it was amazing. I am thinking to take acid next week with an unexpirienced friend. we will be on an island and probably will do it on the beach during the day. I am a little scared about one thing. how possible is it to lose control (which i have never done so far on mushrooms) and try to swim across the sea ? or am I be able to stop my friend if he tries to do it ?
    the truth is that I have a lot on my mind right now and I am taking it in order to sort some things and get some relief … same goes for him… do you think it is a good idea ? or we should better try it in more controlled environment ? thx a lot for your opinion…
    cheers

    • I am 68 Years old in the late 60s I probably took LSD 150 times. That era was very dangerous time to do it because of the profitability of selling it. You never knew what you were taking. You just had to trust in a lot of cases a total shady stranger, but at my age and recklessness it was worth the risk. The material here is very accurate. It is extremely difficult to describe the effects of an LSD trip. I often wonder if the Apple in Garden Of Eden was some form of LSD. I was completely overwhelmed by this thought on one of most memorable trips. If I had to do it over I would definitely not change my approach the psychedelic experience

  8. Thank you so much for this article. I’ve been very nervous and honestly, straight up paranoid about trying LSD. I had a very terrible reaction to marijuana, so you can probably guess why I’m scared of trying LSD. After reading this, it made me feel so much better. I’m still a bit nervous, but I’m guessing that will end when the time comes.

    • Hey, your message is a while ago, but just in case any one else is thinking the same. I also have bad reactions to marijuana any time I try it. I’ve used many drugs and marijuana is the only one I just completely dislike. It makes me irrationally anxious, in a way I can not address. I had my first high dose of LSD recently, and I could feel similar feelings coming up, but it’s a lot different; on LSD if you can find something to distract you or for your brain to take interest in, all those feelings go away. At the same time, if you do choose to address those feelings and delve into them, it’s a lot more productive than if if I had tried to do the same on marijuana. Obviously, that’s just my experience. It’s not a comfortable thing to address, but it feels meaningful, and gives an understanding to where those feelings come from.

      But not every experience has to be like that, I found it very easy to distract my self by playing piano on that trip, and everything just felt perfect.

      It was actually a thing in my head, making me nervous, was me comparing the experience to marijuana and being afraid I’d feel that way. It’s completely different. Despite how strange it is, it still feels like you are “you”, you’re just using every bit of your brain at the same time.

  9. LSD is a substance to change your perspective on a lot of things while high. After your trip calms down, you will be refreshed back into normal life from my perspective.

  10. Great article! One thing I’ve noticed really adds a lot to my trip plus keeps me in a great mood is music. It prevents my mind from feeling restless and anxious. R&B and smooth electronic are my personal favorites.

    I also have found that Lake Tahoe is my favorite place ever to take it. I usually set aside the whole day with no obligations so I can fully focus on the journey ahead.

    Great to see so many people offering advice and guidance to others 🙂

  11. I am really glad I ran across this site. I am 68 years old and I probably have taken LSD or some kind of Psychedelic drug 125-150 times between 1967-1971. This article is very accurate since it is extremely difficult to describe the effect of taking a mind expanding substance. For instance how does anyone explain what it is like to taste color or see sound. I have often thought that the apple in the Garden Of Eden was actually some form of a psychedelic drug and what the Bible describes as the knowledge of good and evil, and was totally consumed by the thought on one trip I took. It is nice to be able to discuss it with like minds, and people that’s a member of the club. It is very frustrating to discuss it with someone who has never experienced it

    • I always thought I knew what it meant “seeing sounds” or “hearing colours” but right now at this moment I realize that I didn’t. I had no clue what it meant until now. You really have to take it to experience something like this

  12. hey, so i recently started getting into acid but one of the things i noticed where how to know if im buying real acid or not. Also on my first trip i took way to much a strip of acid to be exact and after that trip it feels like acid is nothing is it because of my first trip?

  13. i need to know, is it safe to microdose while in public, ive heard it hs little to no effect but its my first time and want some inside advice.

  14. I just picked up two tabs yesterday and plan on trying acid for the first time over spring break (starts tomorrow). I’ve always wanted to try shrooms or acid just to see what the trips like but I could never get a hold of it, finally got some and my close friend wants to try it as well so we plan on taking it on different days together so we can watch and make sure everything goes right. Not gonna lie I’ve heard some crazy stories so I was hella scared but after reading this and some of the previous comments I think I’m prepared and ready. Thanks, wish me luck 😂 hella excited

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