Psychedelic brew called ayahuasca could enhance creative thinking abilities

first_imgShare on Twitter Email Pinterest Share on Facebook A psychedelic brew known as ayahuasca may help people “think outside the box,” according to a new study published in the journal Psychopharmacology. But more research is needed.Ayahuasca has been used in the healing ceremonies of indigenous Amazon tribes for centuries. The psychoactive drink is traditionally prepared using plants which contain beta-carbolines such as harmaline and tryptamines like DMT.Researchers led by K. P. C. Kuypers of Maastricht University visited two spiritual ayahuasca-using groups to investigate the drug’s effect on divergent and convergent thinking. Divergent thinking describes the process of generating many possible solutions to a problem. Convergent thinking, on the other hand, refers to the process of narrowing down potential solutions to find one correct answer.center_img “Creative divergent thinking can enhance and strengthen psychological flexibility by allowing individuals to generate new and effective cognitive, emotional, and behavioral strategies on their own which helps them to adopt adaptive interpretations and coping styles,” the researchers explained.Kuypers and his colleagues recruited 26 participants for their study. These volunteers had all consumed ayahuasca previously.The participants first completed two creativity tasks designed to measure divergent and convergent thinking. About 3 hours later, they consumed ayahuasca in a dimly lit room while music played in the background. After waiting 2 hours for the drug to reach its peak, the participants completed the two creativity tasks again.Only one of the tests, the Picture Concept Task, indicated that ayahuasca produced changes in divergent and convergent thinking. The task required participants to find associations between a number of pictures that were aligned into rows.The researchers found that after consuming ayahuasca, the participants had a harder time finding the one correct association but were better at providing as many alternative answers as possible. Ayahuasca appeared to cause a decrease in conventional convergent thinking but enhance creative divergent thinking.There has been a renewal of interest in the therapeutic use of psychedelic drugs. The authors cautioned that their findings were preliminary, but said their study could have some implications for this line of research.“The present study has shown that ayahuasca promotes divergent thinking, an ability which has been shown to be an important aspect in cognitive therapy,” Kuypers and his colleagues concluded. “It can therefore be suggested that ayahuasca possesses qualities that can promote a therapeutic process. However, since convergent thinking is also a critical aspect in therapy, and the current findings show that ayahuasca impairs this facet during the acute phase, future studies have to investigate whether this effect profile changes over time.”They added: “Additional research utilizing a placebo-controlled experimental design, including additional creativity measures, is warranted, before results can be generalized.” Share LinkedInlast_img read more

Nursing mentors urged to be professional

first_img 23 Views   one comment Nurse Alicia James addressing Mentees and Mentors at the Launching of the Six month Nurse Mentorship/Coaching program.A young health care provider has called on nursing mentors to practice professionalism when dealing with mentees.Nurse Alicia James made that call at the launching of the second phase of a six months Nurse Mentorship/ Coaching Program at the Princess Margaret Hospital on April 4, 2014.The program, which aims to improve the professional practice, overall morale and public image of the Nursing Service in the Ministry of Health, commences today, April 7, 2014.It is expected to provide mentors and coaches who will assist in strengthening the capacity of the nursing service to deliver improved quality of services and will be facilitated by trained mentors/ coaches including retired senior nurses.Nurse James requested that the mentors engaged in the program be nonjudgmental, when assisting mentees.“We expect our mentors to be open and receptive to the fact that we are human and errors will occur in our walk to success; hence please assess our mood and environment when correcting us”.“We expect the content of our discussion within the mentorship relationship to remain confidential. If information needs to be given out, please seek our permission before this is done… please be a buffer to our problems,” she said.Nurse James also urged the mentors to provide continued encouragement and constructive criticism to mentees.“Although you are our mentors, please remember that you have problems as well so we expect our mentors to talk to us not only in the sense that we tell them what we are going through but we expect to know what they are going through as well”.“…we know our mentors are human and we expect you to act as humans,” she said.Meanwhile, mentor Nurse Adora Toussaint called on mentees to be willing to change and be receptive to feedback.She warned that there must be increased professionalism by mentees at all times.“A high level of competence within all staff, a cadre of real professional models, a positive change in the whole concept of customer service, increase commitment and dedication to patient care, enhance accountability and responsibilities assigned task is what we expect of you,” she said.Meanwhile, Nurse Toussaint who acknowledged that the program may be challenging, advised the mentors who are expected to work with the mentees and to be considerate.“Let us seek to be the best that we can be, let us be helpful, considerate, kind, supportive, a good listener”.“And with this in mind our expectations will be forthcoming and our nursing profession and colleagues will stand out high, not only in the eyes of our administrators, but also in the eye of the general public,” she said.Dominica Vibes News Share Tweet LocalNews Nursing mentors urged to be professional by: – April 7, 2014center_img Sharing is caring! Share Sharelast_img read more