It's All Integration
This article is created to support you in developing your authentic way of integrating your psychedelic experience. Through empowering you to engage in psychedelic experiences with information that reduces the risk and elevates the process and enhances the clarity of the integration process. To understand integration is know that it is all integration. The healing of a psychedelic experience comes with the fluid process of contemplating all the aspects that go into the journey before during and after the experience. This means through working with integration as an incremental approach in addition to having safe people who are familiar with the territory, you will solidify the chance to find healing and wholeness through psychedelics.
As you embark on your journey here is a brief checklist to consider:
The Beginning: Educate and Develop Intention
Explain your intention for the experience.Make sure that your mindset and intention are aligned with the offered setting, and that circumstances for safety and emotional support are fitting and within your consent.Possible questions to consider:
Are you comfortable with individual work or curious about group work? What training and/or experience does the guide/sitter/ partner have?What is the purpose of your work? Recreational, Spiritual…Are you conscious of the preparation and integration guidelines for this endeavor? What is your comfort level with this work?
Listen to your intuition: some anxiousness prior to an experience is normal, yet do not force yourself into experiences you are uncertain or uncertain about.Allow and honor any needs to cancel, reschedule or change your mind.
Assess possible outcomes and risks
Know the psychedelic you will be working with.Understand the environment and people you maybe with.Ensure that its quality and source are reliable.Research, research, research understand the dosage range, duration of experience, common effects, adverse reactions, and clear out any concerns. Recognize potential biological-psychological, and social ramifications.Find out what legal threats there are.Discuss concerns with your guide, and review any health conditions/medications/supplements with a healthcare provider.
Prepare for your experience
Are you fasting or requested to fast? Get the best rest you can get.Stay well hydrated. Have a variety of refreshments. Have an assortment of nourishing snacks for energy.Organize transportation to and from journey location as needed.Refrain from energetic emotional/physical/social activity, and plan to be in low-pressure environments. For example, nature, a safe place, safe people, for 1-2 days before and after.Create a list of open friends, family or supporters, and/or an integrative therapist with whom you can discuss the experience after.Focus on preparation for and integration of the upcoming experience through practices such as journaling, creative expression, meditation, exercise, bodywork, time in nature, that this book offers.
Ways to engage with the experience
Exploring the intention through a ritual prior to the session or experience.Engage with rather then judge, evaluate and try to predict.Connect with your breath if frightened or overwhelmed.If it becomes too much, take it internal and go inside.Make it Bigger! Work with rather than shutdown.Never hesitate to reach out to your sitter or guide for support.
Starting the aftercare and integration process.
Go slow - Grow slow.
There is no rush to do anythingTake time to scan your body, going from your feet up to your head.Allow time and space for contemplation of your experience so that it continues to unfold and cultivate.Hydrate, and snack lightly if you desire.Start to consider the difference between nonverbal and verbal ways to express your experience. Over-sharing your experience too fast, or trying to make sense of it too early, may obstruct its full healing potential.Wait a few weeks before making any major life changes or decisions.Continue your integration process.
The other things to consider with integration
The first hours and cascading into the following days after the experience are a fundamental stage to start incorporating new perceptions into your daily life by engaging in regular integration practices. During this time you are most physically, psychologically, emotionally and spiritually open to bring new understandings into life. It is also a cautionary tale to check in with your mind, body and spirit along with friends, family, and professionals that work within this arena.
Review your experience with regards to your original intention, and goals. Start to explore and categorize patterns, themes, and internal emotional states you have.Be ok with letting go of some of the information, you can always come back to it. That’s the value of jotting everything you can down.Avoid the Moon Shot, short term and long-term plans both take time. The Moon Shot is goal that is too big and easy to fail.Make sure your chosen practice(s) are practical and your able to incrementally incorporate them into a sustainable manner. A consistent spiritual or religious practice frequently provides a larger place for your integration work. Refine, Refine, and Refine your integration practices: As time progresses, micro and macro adjust your practices to incorporate new insights, and acknowledge any physical or emotional states that may have arisen during them. This book is designed to use over and over again.
An elder, family, friend or trained integration therapist are all beneficial resources in cultivating and sustaining integration practices.
Things to look out for
Throughout this book we continuously talk about mental health and spiritual emergence. It is extremely important to be comfortable sharing with family, friends or a professional any concerns or non-traditional patterns that start to arise in your daily life.
Are you isolating and/ or starting to give into uncommon thoughts?Paranoid or delusional thoughts occurring beyond the normal duration of an experience.Is your sleep being affect since your psychedelic experience?Thoughts of harming yourself or others. (Call your local emergency department.)Manic behavior, depression, or intense meaninglessness.
Other Exercises to Consider
§ Mandala drawing
§ “Child like” coloring
§ Play-doo or clay work
§ Nature collage - (found on nature walk)
§ Mask making
§ Digital graphic art design
§ Free Association
§ Storytelling of experience
§ Mind mapping
§ Research writing
§ Nature walk
§ Walking meditation
§ Playing music
§ Playing at a park
§ Visiting an art museum
§ Researching your session
§ Bathing / Showering
§ Float tank
Religions or Spiritual Activities
§ Participating in designed ritual
§ Going to your place of worship
§ Isolating with self
§ Going into nature