A Week Without Weed

Last week I took my first official Cannabis Cleanse. I wanted to see how I felt without cannabis in order to intentionally reconnect with the plant. In the process, I discovered new truths about myself and the cannabis community. Here are five things I learned: 

1. You don't have to use cannabis to love cannabis. 
For a long time I assumed that you can't really love cannabis unless you use cannabis regularly. I was quick to judge people in the industry that don't use cannabis as somewhat inauthentic and lacking a true spiritual connection to the plant. During my cleanse, I figured out that we can still love cannabis fully even without using cannabis. Wholeheartedly believing in the potential of cannabis is just as powerful as loving cannabis so much that you use her everyday. If anything, my conviction in cannabis was strengthened when I stepped away from the plant and created the space to clearly evaluate why I love her. 

2. You can connect with the cannabis community with or without cannabis. 
When I started the cleanse, I was worried that I would miss out on opportunities to connect with the cannabis community through the shared experience of using cannabis. I quickly realized that our collective love for and belief in the plant is enough to facilitate authentic and deep connections. This was especially true when Lauren Unger of Hint of Greens came over for an afternoon of meaningful conversation. Initially I was worried that we wouldn't have anything to talk about if we didn't spark the conversation with a joint. I was so wrong. We didn't need a joint to share our hopes, dreams and fears in cannabis and beyond. Cannabis initiated our relationship, but she was more of a mutual friend than a necessity in our friendship. Spending time with Lauren without cannabis made me appreciate the power of shared values to to facilitate real connections. Our shared love for cannabis is so strong that we don't even need cannabis to bond. 

3. Intentional alignment is everything. 
Living in California, it is often easy to mindlessly use cannabis. Walking down the street in Los Angeles, it is hard to ignore the consistent scent of joints burning. Sometimes I use cannabis because I can't think of a good enough reason why I shouldn't use cannabis. Spending a week without her made me realize that intention is critical in regular cannabis use. If you don't start with a clear reason why you are using the plant, the plant can easily use you. Moving forward, I want to be more mindful of my intentions each time I interact with cannabis and closely monitor the results.  

4. Contextualize your cannabis use. 
Because I always choose cannabis over alcohol, I would typically bring her everywhere. I am always the girl rolling joints at parties and partaking in cannabis even if no one else is interested. During my cleanse I discovered the importance of contextualizing my cannabis use based on the specific environment. It is not always a good time to use cannabis, and it is important to understand your audience before evaluating the situation. From now on I will look around before I assume it is the right place and the right time. 

5. I am more than a cannabis lover. 
As an aspiring cannabis entrepreneur, I thought that my identity would be tainted without cannabis. Many people know me as an avid cannabis user, so I was worried that I would lose part of who I am if I took a break from the plant. However, through this experience I realized that I want to be known and remembered for more than my love for cannabis. I want to create healthy and safe products that disrupt the entire industry and shift people's perception of what it means to self-medicate. In order to do that, I need to establish myself as more than just a cannabis lover. I want to be more of a cannabis contributor.