Are Cannabis Users More Creative?



Robert Lundahl 415.205.3481
Adam Francis 858.XXX.XXXX

Are Cannabis Users More Creative?

By Robert Lundahl

LOS ANGELES, CA–A recent study by Emily LaFrance of Washington State University Graduate School of Psychology indicates cannabis users are more creative, and that there may be a reason for that.

The study measures creativity or enhanced creativity using cannabis in three ways.The first is “self-reported creativity,” i.e. do cannabis users feel more creative? The second objectively measures performance on creative tasks.

Third, LaFrance’s study looks at personality traits. Here it gets interesting because previous studies have indicated that both cannabis users and creative people share certain, and perhaps unsurprising, personality traits–like openness to new experiences.

Let’s go back to the first question.

LaFrance’s study indicates cannabis users subjectively report the feeling and perception of enhanced creativity. On the objective, performance-related testing, cannabis users performed better on one specific objective test, proving that, yes, cannabis users are more creative.

As LaFrance herself indicates, shared personality traits offer a more complex and nuanced perspective. In controlled studies, cannabis users demonstrated higher creativity than non-users, but the higher creativity, according to LaFrance, is due more to personality differences than to cannabis use alone.

Cannabis users are more willing to try new things.

While the personality trait “openness to experience” has been linked to being more creative, it has also been linked to being more likely to try cannabis. When the authors statistically controlled for the difference between cannabis users and non-users in the category “openness to experience” the differences between cannabis users and non-users, relative to creativity, disappeared.

LaFrance and her team conclude that cannabis users did demonstrate higher creativity than non-users but the reason may have more to do with the underlying personality traits than the cannabis itself.