The best stories are believable; heartfelt and convincing. True or not, a great story makes an emotional connection, and guides the reader on a journey. Some have lasting effects, such as prompting a change in behavior. As marijuana legalization sweeps the nation, so too do great stories and new trends that support the cause.
Among the newest trends taking pot-friendly states by storm is micro-dosing, especially at work. It refers to ingesting between two and 10 milligrams (mg) of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) at multiple intervals throughout the day. Most people wouldn’t dream of carrying booze with them to do shots all day long. Why then does this craze of dosing up seem to be catching on? It is because of the great stories that are being published by the chronic users and business owners in the cannabis industry. Chronic users have a personal agenda, which inadvertently supports the business owners with deep pockets who don’t give much of a damn about the rest of society.
A simple search from any connected device yields thousands of results on micro-dosing THC.
“The Best Way For Parents to Micro-Dose” and “The Best Products For Micro-Dosing at Work” seem to rally the most clicks. Articles of that type attempt to portray low-dose THC as a safe bio-hacking instrument. Micro-dosing is touted as a “holistic wellness product,” used to help people feel their best, and the inexperienced just may be naive enough to believe it.
Let’s get real, people. If you want to smoke yourself into a stupor on your own time, that’s one thing. If you need to micro-dose to unwind after a long hard day because you don’t like the real world, then go for it. But keep your corrosive fairy tale to yourself. Don’t be simple-minded enough to bring it to work and assume that it is OK. Honestly, if you don’t see the harm in this, then you’ve already lost too many brain cells; you need to throw in the towel.
While we do live in a society that thrives on instant gratification, you can’t always have things your way, and jumping on the bandwagon can get you in trouble. Micro-dosing at work is never a good idea; it’s not fair to anyone. Would you want your doctor micro-dosing in the days and hours leading up to your surgery? It should be OK, it just makes them feel better, right? No danger there. How about your pharmacist? Would you be confident in the prescriptions they fill for you if they were singing the praises of micro-dosing at work? Suppose you were falsely accused of a crime that carries a life sentence with no chance of parole. Would you want your public defender micro-dosing to help them present your case?
Come on. Even pot-friendly states have laws against driving under the influence of marijuana; it alters your mental state, and not for the better. Some degree of mental clarity is necessary at work in every industry.
The National Institute of Health recently conducted controlled studies in conjunction with the United States National Library of Medicine. The studies examined the effects of cannabis on driving skills. Before advocates fly off the deep end, take a moment to consider why this is relevant. First, there is the fact that at least 30-percent of US jobs involve driving. That number is much higher if you account for the masses of people who drive back and forth to work, many of them shuttling children to school in the process. Driving is like a rite of passage into adulthood. Most teens begin driving before they are old enough to vote. With experience, they refine the four main cognitive skills required to drive safely. These skills include visual search and selection, process comprehension of relevant information, reaction to stimuli, and higher-level executive function. The same skills are necessary to perform most job duties, usually with a higher degree of cognition.
It doesn’t matter if you are digging ditches, waiting tables, or teaching youngsters, you shouldn’t party at work. Yes, that’s what it is. Micro-dosing is partying. Somehow, people are reading these great stories and getting the idea that this behavior is acceptable. Partying “in moderation” is still partying; doing it at work is never acceptable. It is irresponsible. Those who don’t agree are wrong, and it’s not a difficult case to argue.
Just gather up proponents of the micro-dosing at work fad, and give them a plane ticket to Hawaii. What’s the catch? The pilot of the airplane is also an avid micro-doser, and he keeps a nice, big bowl of edibles in the cockpit. How many people would think twice before getting on the plane? Most of them, if they got on the plane at all. Luckily, we don’t have to worry about that because some people do seem to have their head screwed on straight.
The National Center for Biotechnology Information has conducted several tests on the toxicity of marijuana as it relates to pilots. Several pilots were tested multiple times using a simulator to ensure the safety of passengers. They were first tested before ingesting marijuana, then again at regular hourly intervals after ingesting 20 mg of THC. The tests revealed substantial impairment 24 hours after ingestion, despite the pilots’ apparent lack of awareness of the drug’s effect. There are fatal plane crashes on recent record that have been investigated and directly attributed to THC ingestion. Despite state specific laws, pilots must comply with rules enforced by the Federal Aviation Administration. Thank goodness.
The effects of THC linger. The effects build up in the bloodstream, most often with the user oblivious to the drug’s influence. Edibles containing THC may take an hour or longer to be felt as the effects are not immediate. However, it could last a long time, and this has led to problems.
Even experienced proponents can end up suffering from marijuana intoxication after eating too much. Never mind the poor novice trying to catch a simple buzz. The effects of edible marijuana last between six and 10 hours, on average. Most weed-friendly states consider an edible dose to be 10 mg. Consuming three edibles throughout a workday is the equivalent of smoking more than an entire joint by yourself. Can you really do a bang-up job while you’re stoned to bejesus? Not likely. Moreover, the amount of THC ingested can be hard to regulate. Sure, the packaging may be pretty, and it may promise to make you feel like a million bucks. However, with no regulatory compliance standards, you could be eating anything, and you probably are.
Colorado legalized cannabis in 2012, and began allowing sales in 2014. The University of Colorado School of Medicine reviewed medical records for patients between 2012 and 2016. They found that marijuana related emergency room visits more than tripled during that time.
While edibles accounted for a smaller percentage of sales, edibles seemed to cause the most problems. To further illustrate the point, states with legalized marijuana have seen a notable rise in auto accidents compared to similarly populated states that still ban the wacky weed. The numbers are based on crash data, along with studies conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and the Highway Loss Data Institute. Since the correlation to legal marijuana is virtually undeniable, the near 200-dollar per resident rise in auto insurance should have been expected.
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The results of the driving tests conducted by the NCBI showed impaired cognitive function due to marijuana consumption, and that impairment significantly increased with task complexity. Driving is not considered an overly complicated activity, especially for those with experience. However, states which have legalized recreational marijuana use impose fines and penalties for driving under the influence of THC. Just two nanograms (ng) of THC in your bloodstream can carry a 1,000-dollar fine, and five nanograms can get you slapped with a DUI. It doesn’t take a lot to alter your mental state, and impair psychomotor skills.
Put into perspective: a single grain of salt is equal to 58,500 ng.
Controlled studies showed that cannabis consumption induces dose-related impediments in cognitive and psychomotor functioning. This combination of movement and cognition is necessary to perform most job duties safely. From working with power tools, to dangerous hot liquids, to being responsible for other human beings, a clear head is ideal, across the board. Now that we are through the decline of morality, and the virtual support of human recklessness, there are other things to consider.
When engaging in an activity like micro-dosing at work, you must also think about legalities and liability issues. The National Safety Council reports that someone is injured on the job every seven seconds. That number equates to more than 12,000 workplace injuries per day. Nearly 100 people die every week due to workplace fatalities, and the numbers are before the micro-dosing craze started spreading.
Getting high at work only puts more people at risk. Those who are unfortunate enough to be injured on the job with THC in their system are left with no recourse. Workers’ compensation will assume no liability, regardless of who is at fault. Businesses operating in pot-friendly states still enforce strict policies against drugs at work, and in the hours leading up to a shift.
Most employers have policies in place against drug use at work for safety reasons. While the term “drug use” is a blanket term, it still includes marijuana in legalized states. Governing bodies have determined that clear correlations exist between marijuana use and an increase in workplace accidents in pot-friendly states. Relaxed state laws, and a changing public perception does not negate an employer’s policy to ban drugs at work. Some industries are federally required to do so. The consequences of ignoring this policy can include a refusal to hire or promote, workplace discipline and termination, or prosecution. This is a precursor to the shame and guilt you’ll feel if you blow that big deal, or cause harm to someone else.
Unless you work in a dispensary, you have no business micro-dosing at work. Even then, it should probably be avoided.
Lastly, we have this business of micro-dosing being referred to as a personal holistic experience. That is a load of garbage. There is nothing holistic about consuming weed in small doses. Sure, it may make some people feel better for a while — until they need more to achieve the same effect (which is known as dependence).
Micro-dosing comes with all the same dangers of getting stoned; it just refers to smaller doses. People who value their job, and their future, wouldn’t think of doing shots or snorting lines all day at work; they have too much to lose. Unfortunately, it seems that many people are getting caught up in the socio-psychological phenomenon known as group polarization, and they are using positive micro-dosing articles as their social proof. The fact that a lot of people are doing something doesn’t make it right. This is what we tell teenagers, and their brains are still developing.
It is really mind-blowing to think that adults are making the micro-dosing argument. As usual, there is a group of people ruining things for everyone else. Supporting legalization becomes a lot harder when narrow-minded pea-brains try to convince the rest of the world that it’s OK to go to work high. There are a lot of people who support marijuana legalization, but have managed to conduct themselves responsibly in the workplace.
Drugs and alcohol have never been acceptable at work, regardless of the dosage; people know that. However, some read stories full of promise, and connect with other small-minded people who break the rules. Their opinions become extreme, and before you know it, the entire group is arguing that micro-dosing in the workplace is acceptable. That is hogwash, whether you support legalization or not.
Getting high at work is not OK because you’re just getting a little high. Catching a buzz at work is not acceptable since you’re not “couch-lock” high. The stories of micro-dosing at work may be emotionally charged, but the stories intend to garner more clicks and drive conversions. You are either getting high, or you aren’t. Everyone wants to feel good; those who find it really important are proactive enough to take care of themselves, so they feel great.
Please do everyone a favor and put your best foot forward. Acknowledge that micro-dosing stories are meant to get into your pocket. Show up for work clear-headed, and ready to do your job well. Do it to the best of your abilities; nobody is promised tomorrow.
If you smoke so much pot that you can’t get through the workday without micro-dosing, then get help. It is not normal. If you don’t like your job, or you are unhappy at home, then make some changes. We do live in America.
People have gotten soft, and somewhere along the line, they began to feel entitled. Grow a set and quit whining. Sometimes life is hard, and it doesn’t always feel good. Get over it. Ingesting marijuana in small doses is not bio-hacking, and pot is not a holistic wellness product. It is just pot.
Whether you put it in a bong, roll it in a joint, or eat it in a cookie. It is just weed; keep it at home!
Jani Phillips is an experienced freelance writer who specializes in nonfiction, Search Engine Optimization friendly web content, and blog posts. She holds a business degree with an emphasis on accounting, and a culinary arts certificate.