Those new to working with psychedelic medicines often hope that just taking the substance will be enough to achieve good plant medicine integration. They fantasize that they will find a simple and magical solution to complicated issues in their life. And while this may happen once in a blue moon, it’s not the norm. Not by a long shot.
It can take weeks, months or even years to properly digest and put into practice the wisdom gained from the plant medicine integration. Good aftercare is a key part of the journey to integration because if not done properly, the whole event fades to an interesting story to tell the grand kids one day.
Aftercare starts long before the journey begins when you set into place fail safe methods to keep you focused and growing long after the last strobe stops.
Best Plant Medicine Integration Practices
Here’s how to get the best out of your plant medicine journey:
- Do your due diligence. Find out what medicine clicks with you and do a lot of research about the authenticity of the people and places offering it. Don’t blindly go into any situation that doesn’t put your safety, comfort and spiritual growth first.
- As safely as possible, wean yourself off any prescriptions, drugs, herbs and alcohol beforehand. Mixing these with plant medicines is just too dangerous not to do so. Your medicine facilitators should be able to give the proper advice regarding discontinuing medications and what supplements to take to make that easier.
- Heed the dietary advice given so you have no adverse reactions and can be as comfortable as possible while the medicine does its work. It will be much easier on you if the medicine isn’t physically detoxing your system of the hamburger and fries you had yesterday while doing the deeper work you need to grow.
- Create rituals and practices to help you best get in touch with yourself before and after the experience, such as meditating, walking, doing yoga, getting counseling, energy or breath work, journal-ing, delving into artistic expression, finding a stable group of peers and rituals/practices.
- Set an intention. Even though your inner wisdom and the spirit of the medicine know best what you need, the paradoxical effect of identifying your deeper intention, and then letting it go when the ceremony starts as a sign of trust in your deeper knowing is most beneficial to the process.
- Embrace the information that comes to you during the experience instead of resisting it. Thank the medicine for each vision it sends your way – the “good” or “bad.” All are shown for you to learn from, like situations in your childhood that you now have the objectiveness to revisit as an adult.
- Continue the practices you started in #4 along with the diet in order to integrate the medicine’s lessons into your daily life. Set aside quiet time away or at home to ponder and metabolize the experience. Spend time journaling to recover lost aspects and process emotions.The afterglow may last a few days or weeks but sooner or later, reality sets in, and old patterns and habits take hold again. Instead of questioning the depth of the experience or forgetting important parts of it, put conscious effort into continuing and deepening the work and find ways to incorporate your discoveries.
- Define what your life looks like with the changes suggested during plant medicine integration. Make a recovery plan.
- Be mindful about how to share and with whom. Hearing someone who just doesn’t get it jeering at your adventure can damage the delicate seedlings planted in your psyche and the new neural pathways made during the journey.
- Don’t make important decisions in the following weeks. You’re still in an altered state so give yourself some time to come back to earth before you decide anything of importance.
With these top 10 tips to successful plant medicine integration, you’re well on your way to getting the most out of your journey, so enjoy, solidify and soar!