The first step to creating an impactful and potentially transformational microdosing practice is setting a container or structure for your microdosing journey. You can think of this as 30 days (the minimum we recommend), 60 days, or 90 days (the max recommended in one cycle). This is an energetic commitment to exploring a new relationship with the fungi friends.
This can go on your calendar, be written about in your journal, and be communicated to your friends, family, or partner for accountability and support. After your first container, it is essential to take a 2-8 week break before starting a new container. We’ll talk more about integration in the last pillar.
Having a container helps orient you to a new way of being - it provides a grounding structure for you to play and explore within and gives you a home base to return to if you fall off track at any point.
An essential part of your container is setting a clear intention for your microdosing journey. Setting an intention is how we laser-focus our energy and attention to create an anchor for us throughout our microdosing container.
Why are you called to microdose? What do you desire from this relationship? What habits do you want to cultivate? Are there any repetitive behaviors that you are ready to change? Do you have any specific goals, challenges, or trauma you want to work with? Perhaps you are calling in a more intimate connection with the people you love in your life. Or you are committing to writing a book or a creative project. Or you feel stuck and want to reconnect with the magic of being alive!
Write it on your wall, put it in your calendar, journal about it, talk about it, dance with it and allow it to come to life through the next month+ of your container.
People use the first 30 days of their container to experiment with different protocols. Protocols are not static and will change as you change through seasons and life cycles. It’s common to have committed protocols in the first year + of microdosing. Most people get to a point where they start to microdose more intuitively once they have a solid relationship with the medicine. Here are some most common protocols:
- Four days on three days off - the Paul Stamets method. This is nice because it’s a seven-day cycle and is easy to keep track of.
- One day on two days off - Dr. Fadiman’s approach - more commonly used for LSD microdosing from what I’ve seen. The idea is you have a dose day, an “afterglow / micro glow” day where you are still feeling the benefits of your microdose, and then an integration day.
- One day on, one day off - This one from the microdosing institute is recommended if you struggle with depression and feel dips on your off days.
- Your protocol - create your own based on your life, intentions, and desires.
- People report that it can be effective to do three days on two days off, for example. The key here is to have breaks. It is not good to microdose every day for extended periods. Experts recommend that taking regular breaks of 1-2 days and creating a clear structure for your breaks may support integration & ensuring no tolerance is built up.
Find Your Sparkle
The Psychedelic Explorer's Guide suggests that a good starting place is .1g (100mg or 1/10g) of psilocybin mushrooms. In our experience, this has much more to do with brain & gut chemistry than body weight or gender. The assumption that because a person is large, they should take a higher dose (or visa versa) has not been proven to be accurate. The sweet spot can take some time to play with to find the right spot. The @microdosinginstitute recommends you ‘start low & go slow.’ Some people increase or decrease by .05g at a time and keep track of their progress.
What a ‘sweet spot’ feels like: CLEAR. Generally uplifting. Senses may be slightly heightened, and there’s a SPARKLE to the world—less resistance (and maybe more joy) to daily tasks and activities. One may find it easier to get into flow or come up with creative solutions with ease. One may notice that they're less reactionary to situations that would typically be triggering.
If someone is feeling these things, it’s a good sign that they're not in their sweet spot:
The dose is likely too high: confusion, foggy, ungrounded, flighty, too ethereal, like you can’t be on the computer or focus on daily tasks, consistently nervous with every dose.
A dose is likely too low: feel zero impact or shift after giving it one whole week of the protocol.
Rituals are a consistent (devotional) practice of preparing, showing up, and embracing yourself in the present moment. Expanding your microdosing from a routine item on your to-do list to a ritual that connects you to yourself and your body can make all of the difference. Having a microdosing ritual can look like combining your microdose with a mindfulness or embodiment practice which can increase the potency of your practice.
While we’ve seen our fair share of instagrammable spirituality, that’s not what we’re talking about here. If anything, the fungi friends teach us how to connect with our inner child and return to what brings us joy in our lives. You can create a simple, do-able, and potent ritual practice from this place.
Create your unique, fully YOU ritual with inspiration from these tips:
- Include preparation, the actual ritual, and a closing. This can be as simple as lighting a candle to prep, taking your microdose before meditation with a clear intention for your main ritual, and then giving thanks to close.
- Activate all of your senses: taste (a delicious elixir to blend your microdose into), feel (a cozy pillow to sit on or move your body), smell (incense, oils), sight (a flower, a candle, paint), hearing (soothing music, singing).
- Incorporate a practice that connects you to yourself. Give yourself permission to be whatever you want it to be. Some examples include a morning walk, dance party, breathwork, journaling, making art, singing, meditating, tai chi, creating an earth altar, saying a prayer, speaking to the spirit of the fungi friends, etc.
- It can be 5 minutes or 90; try to make it something doable consistently.
Allow this to be a dance between commitment & discipline and flexibility & flow.
Ingredients & Sourcing
Microdosing requires us to bring attention to where our medicine comes from. In an ideal world, everyone would have access to pristine, well-cared-for medicine that has been grown with love and non-chemical ingredients. We know legality makes it challenging in places like the US, and as ‘magic mushrooms’ are also a popular party drug, one could buy them from some weird IG account or a sketchy friend-of-a-friend. While we’re not judging either of those scenarios, the point we’re making is that the energy that goes into cultivating your mushrooms continues into you as the final one ingesting them. You want to be very intentional about what you take as medicine. If they are treated with love and respect, you will often feel it energetically compared to mushrooms grown just for profit, using non-organic chemicals and thrown into a baggie to sell to the first buyer they find. While it can take longer to find them, there are many underground producers out there putting love into their medicine, and with the right intention, we’re sure you can find them.
There are common ‘stacks’ for microdosing that people like Paul Stamets recommend to enhance the microdosing benefits. One of our favorites, which will be the pillar of our product line, is combining organic lions mane powder with high-fat content organic cacao powder. Lion's mane and psilocybin are synergistic, and the two together can support the creation of new neural connections in your brain. Cacao is the delivery vehicle for the mushrooms as it can increase blood flow and is also packed with nourishing nutrients. From a spiritual perspective, cacao brings nourishing feminine heart medicine to our microdose, which makes us feel warm and gooey inside.
People explore many combinations of ingredients with their microdose; if you’re into the herbs, plants, and medicinal mushrooms, try playing around a bit with your own concoction if you feel the call. If you’re not much of a ‘fu** around and find out’ kinda person, start with some lions mane!
One of the essential foundations of an effective microdosing practice is creating space for integration. Without integration and reflection, we can miss so many of the magical moments and progress that we’ve made on our paths. Integration can look like daily journal entries to note how you felt, any synchronicities or insights that came through, or using a tracking app such as @with.houston. We like to think of this as your harvest; what ideas, growth, opportunities, learnings are you harvesting from your microdosing container? You can do this daily, weekly, or at the end of your longer container.
Taking breaks is also a very important part of your microdosing integration. Microdosing, while subtle, is also very powerful, and we need to give our brains time to rest after continuously feeding them such potent brain food. Nature did not intend us to be in a constant state of growth, we also need to shed, rest and digest between growth periods in order to stay balanced. Breaks are also important because they ensure we don’t build a tolerance to our microdose. If we don’t pause on our off days, and also take longer break periods of 2-8 weeks, we will find that we need to take more mushrooms to feel the same effect. Lastly, there is some emerging study on potential negative effects of psilocybin on our hearts. This is preliminary and while we won’t go into detail on this here, from this discussion the primary recommendation for safety is to ensure one is taking the 2-8 week break periods between cycles.