your environment affects your journey
“Setting” is the physical and social environment in which you experience a psilocybin journey. You want to be in a place where you feel safe, open, free, comfortable, clean, protected, and empowered.
First, you must decide whether you want to be inside or outside. A familiar indoor space (e.g. your bedroom or living room) often allows for a more introspective state of mind while providing a greater sense of safety, and insulation from unpredictable elements (e.g. people, machinery, weather, sounds, etc.).
A safe outdoor environment can help you connect with the vastness and beauty of nature. Being with the trees, mountains, rivers, oceans, animals, birds, insects, clouds, and wind, and watching these beings “breathe” can inspire a new relationship with nature.
An ideal option, if it is available to you, is a setting that provides the benefits of both indoor and outdoor spaces. For example, journeying at a quiet, secluded cabin in the middle of a forest with a patio and large windows lets you move between different types of environments quickly and safely.
If you are not in a warm indoor space, have plenty of warm clothes and blankets available so you can stay comfortable, and can feel relaxed getting naked if called. Also, avoid strangers and don’t get lost.
In any case, have a safe, comfortable and quiet place to lay down and relax, and also easy access to a toilet or a natural area to relieve yourself.
Organize and clean your environment. Remove clutter, and objects you might trip over or give you unhappy feelings (e.g. a pile of dirty laundry). Be mindful of sharp or breakable objects, and remove them if you feel more relaxed without them around. The cleaner your space, the better; it is impossible to predict what you will want to do and where in the room or environment your body will be. For example, you may want to lay on the floor or roll around the room. Having soft pillows and blankets can comfort you.
A stressful, fearful, noisy, and/or dirty environment may result in an unpleasant experience. Conversely, a warm, cozy and safe place is more conducive to a relaxing and joyful experience. Thus, to maximize the chances of having a pleasant, healing, and mind-expanding journey, take seriously the preparation of your physical space.
You may wish to prepare a playlist of healing music of at least six hours. Many curated playlists are available on the internet (search “psilocybin playlist” on google).
You are also free to create your own playlists. It’s best to select music you find comforting, calming, and awe-inspiring. You may want to consider including:
It’s best to avoid angry rap music or pieces with too many lyrics. However, everyone has different tastes: The authors have heard a story about someone who has had transformative experiences listening to death metal. One of the authors has personally tripsat for someone who only wanted to listen to loud, raucous classical music that others would find far too aggressive and jarring. She had life-changing experiences.
Towards the end of the journey, on the come-down, we may listen to whatever we wish, including songs with lyrics.
Along with your musical selection, you will want to prepare headphones or speakers. For higher doses, speakers may be the preferred option because keeping headphones over your ears may prove challenging during some periods of the journey.
Sometimes, silence is exactly what you need, especially if things feel like they may be overwhelming. A change in music or a shift to silence can change the tone of your experience. If in nature, you may not want music at all - nature sounds carry their own vibrational frequency which can be very healing. A birdsong or an insect’s buzz can interrupt patterns of rigid thinking and be a reminder of how simple life can be.
Psilocybin tends to unlock creative energies so you may want to have art supplies and writing material ready in case you feel inspired to express yourself.
Prepare a favorite picture, flower, plant, painting or image to have around you. Pictures of your parents, siblings, ancestors, and children can be particularly powerful, especially if these beings are related to your intentions. These artifacts can bring up, and help you feel and process complex emotions. You may wish to create an altar of sacred and meaningful objects.