Silicon Valley is known for its innovation in technology. But it’s also known for something else: drug use.
With the competitive nature of working in Silicon Valley, it’s no surprise people are looking for ways to get ahead. This article describes the extent of Silicon Valley drug use.
One of the most popular drug trends in Silicon Valley right now is the microdosing of psychedelics. People take an incredibly small dose of drugs like LSD or mescaline.
While taking a standard dose of psychedelic drugs would almost certainly make you incapable of working, microdosing has a very different effect. While a recreational dose of LSD would cause you to see visual patterns and distortions, a microdose wouldn’t do any of that.
Instead, a microdose of LSD reportedly heightens alertness and creativity. It also reportedly enhances overall well-being and happiness.
The Effectiveness of Microdosing
Tech workers using drugs such as LSD isn’t anything new. Steve Jobs infamously used LSD when he was coming up with a lot of his biggest ideas.
But the idea of taking a microdose is a fairly new one. There’s disagreement as to how effective it actually is. Some people believe that a lot of the positive effects from microdosing are merely a placebo.
Microdosing is not without its risks. Psychedelic drugs such as LSD are controlled substances. Getting caught with LSD could have some serious consequences.
Since these drugs are illegal, microdoses need to be purchased from a dealer. This means you might not always get what you think you’re getting. Some microdosers report they’ve inadvertently taken a high dose, causing them to start tripping at work.
In Silicon Valley, everyone wants to come up with the next big thing. There’s a widespread belief that taking LSD can provide people with the inspiration they need to get ahead of the competition. But it’s definitely better to stay sober.
The Use of Adderall
Adderall is a drug that’s used to help people with ADHD to focus. It’s also famously used by college students to help them write essays and study for exams well into the night.
So it’s no surprise that the drug is also popular in Silicon Valley. These workers often work 80 hour weeks. Adderall can help keep them focused and productive long after coffee’s stopped working.
Work deadlines in Silicon Valley often mean workers need to stay on task for insane amounts of time. Some employees mistakenly think they’re suffering from ADHD because they’re not able to stay on-task. They might start taking Adderall to remedy the situation.
Once you start using Adderall at work, it’s very easy to become dependent on it. If an Adderall user stops using the drug, their level of productivity will almost certainly take a hit. This means they’re forced to continue using Adderall to keep up with deadlines.
Unrealistic Expectations: The Cause of Silicon Valley Drug Use?
A lot of the drug use in Silicon Valley is down to the unrealistic expectations people feel they should live up to. Workers in the area are expected to bring a certain energy at all times.
When you’re tired and burned out, it becomes difficult to project that sort of feeling. This means many Silicon Valley employees are turning to drugs to keep their energy levels up. Stimulants such as Adderall and cocaine are very popular for this reason.
Think you know someone using drugs to get ahead in the Valley? If you’re curious what the top signs of addiction are, learn more by reading this blog.
Letting Off Steam
It’s very much part of the culture in Silicon Valley to “let off steam” through excessive partying. Instead of resting after working hard all week, people are expected to party as hard as they work.
For many people, living this kind of lifestyle is simply impossible without some sort of chemical assistance. Silicon Valley workers might take extreme measures to keep up, such as using cocaine or methamphetamine. For many, this kind of lifestyle simply isn’t sustainable and it ends up causing significant problems at work.
Alcohol is also very prevalent in Silicon Valley. At many companies, drinking at work is the norm. The office might even have a dedicated bar set up.
Often, it becomes customary to have a round of drinks after making a sale or completing a project. Many of the companies in Silicon Valley are startups, where the rules regarding drinking on the job are a lot more relaxed.
Despite all this talk about dangerous drugs, one of the most used drugs in Silicon Valley is certainly caffeine. Since workers routinely work 80-hour weeks, it’s safe to say they drink a little more coffee than the average person.
Of course, tolerance to caffeine can build substantially over time. This means many people in Silicon Valley are looking for something else to give the kick that caffeine once provided.
Some people have started using a drug called nootropics. These drugs have been introduced to the workplace by the Silicon Valley biohacking movement. Biohacking involves optimizing your body for maximum productivity.
Advocates believe these drugs can provide a significant boost to energy levels and productivity. With that being said, the drugs have not yet been approved by the FDA for use as a cognitive enhancer.
Risk of Addiction
Anyone who lives a stressful lifestyle is in the high-risk category for addiction. When you’re routinely working 80-hour weeks, it’s easy to fall into a destructive lifestyle. It’s a lot easier to become addicted if you’re taking drugs to help with work rather than just taking them for recreation.
Addiction can creep up on you. By the time you realize you have a problem, it’s probably too late.
A Way to Get Ahead
Since Silicon Valley is such a competitive environment, it’s no surprise that people are always looking for ways to get ahead. Silicon Valley drug use can often provide a boost to creativity and energy in the short-term. But it almost always ends up costing you in the end.
Repeated use of stimulants will make you dependent on them to do the job and you’ll need to take them just to feel normal. If you feel like you’re developing a drug problem, consider checking into rehab.
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