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  • Writer's pictureElla Heart

My Preparation For Taking Psychedelics

What you need to know

This is a general guideline for all kinds of psychedelics. I’ll go into more detail in future articles.

I see psychedelics as very intense but helpful tools for self-development. They are definitely not party drugs and should taken very seriously with a lot of responsibility. I never had a bad trip (yet) but I think it has a lot to do with the setting, the preparation and the intention.

I had a lot of different psychedelic experiences. I started with magic mushroom trips (psilocybin) followed by Ayahuasca, Iboga, Kambo, and DMT in form of Changa.

What I do before I attend psychedelic treatments

Before I book a psychedelic event (like Ayahuasca or Iboga) I do a lot of research, read the latest studies, and look into the risks and benefits. Information is power so I try to get as much info as possible on the chosen plant medicine.

Meditation & Pranayama

About one month before the psychedelic event I work on my mind. I do a lot of meditation and breathing exercises (pranayama), try to stay away from too much social contact (online and in real life), and focus more on my mindset, and my thoughts. I quit Netflix and other similar distractions during my preparation months because I want my mind to be focused and not distracted.


I also watch my diet more carefully and eat healthy, organic fresh fruit.

Note: For example, when taking Ayahuasca a special diet is necessary. Foods that contain the amino acid “tyramine” do not go well with ayahuasca and should be avoided.

A lot of times a special diet is needed before attending a psychedelic ceremony, that’s why research is very important.


In general, ALCOHOL doesn’t go well in combination with plant medicine. A guide/shaman told me that if they work with alcoholics they HAVE TO go through the shakes BEFORE an Ayahuasca treatment otherwise it can get dangerous. After our Iboga ceremony, our guide told us that the iboga still works in the body for a couple of weeks after the treatment and helps to repair the body but as soon as the human body gets only a sip of alcohol the magic is gone.

I personally stopped drinking alcohol a few years ago so that is an easy point for me now. But if you still like to drink a bit I would definitely recommend stopping with it completely a few weeks beforehand and afterward.

Western Medicine

If you have to take certain medications you should always check with your doctor AND the psychedelic guide. Sometimes it is not a problem, but it can be. For example, anti-depressant pills are very dangerous in combination with Ayahuasca or DMT.

I like to do a general blood test before flood doses, just to be on the safe side. I always have an eye on my kidneys, liver and heart values. These are the 3 organs that have to be completely healthy to avoid any risk but I also heard from shamans that sometimes psychedelics can be taken to help to cure conditions in the body. As I am not a doctor I would recommend asking medicine professionals and shamans if you have any condition.

With Iboga it is even more important that you check your heart, liver, and kidneys are working well because Iboga is harsh on your human body and it will be exhausting for the human body, but also so worth it. My iboga experience was fantastic on a spiritual and healing level but my body needed a whole week to fully recover afterwards.

No Sex

If you want to raise the kundalini energy in your body you need to make sure that you save up enough energy in your chakras. Sex needs this energy too so if you want a deeper experience you need to do Sex fasting, at least 3–4 weeks before your ceremony. It makes a big difference.

Dreams & Intention

During my preparation month, I like to journal my dreams, practice more yoga asanas and start writing about my intention. Why do I want to jump into this rabbit hole, what is missing in my life? What do I want to learn, what do I want to process, where do I want to improve, and which negative patterns do I want to reprogram, etc.

Material to work with during the trip

I like to work with pictures, for my Ayahuasca weekend in the Netherlands I took family pictures with me because that was a huge part of my intention. This is absolutely optional. I also had some questions prepared on a sheet of paper that I wanted to have answered.

After 1 month of preparation

After one month of preparation, you will feel calm, prepared, and ready. It’s also important to know that these plants are teachers.

You need to be open to new content, if you refuse to learn you could have a more difficult trip. With a mindful approach and an open mind, you only need the right team and setting to go on this spiritual journey but this is a topic for another time.

I hope this was helpful if you are interested in psychedelics. Please let me know if you have any other questions. I am just a student like you but I am happy to share everything that I’ve learned so far.

Let’s create a better world for everybody and never forget to treat others how you want to be treated.

Disclaimer: This article does not promote or recommend the use of illegal drugs. Some of the substances referenced are illegal in some countries. This article does not constitute medical advice. Please do your own research and consult your doctor before taking any psychedelics.

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