Drinking Ayahuasca in difficult times – Good or bad idea?

drinking Ayahuasca in difficult times

If you’re currently struggling with personal hardships and contemplating whether participating in an Ayahuasca ceremony might be beneficial or detrimental, you’re not alone. This question is a significant concern for many who are considering to venture into psychedelics as a means of navigating life’s difficulties.

You’ve probably encountered the term “set and setting” numerous times if you’ve explored psychedelic substances. It’s a key concept emphasizing the importance of one’s mindset (set) and environment (setting) when partaking in psychedelic experiences. If you’re going through a difficult period, it’s understandable that you might worry this state of unrest could amplify during your Ayahuasca ceremony, potentially leading to an unpleasant or even traumatic experience.

However, is this concern entirely warranted? Or, conversely, could it be that these moments of struggle present a unique opportunity for profound healing and self-discovery? We’ll delve into these questions in this blog, seeking to showcase the potential risks and rewards of participating in an Ayahuasca ceremony when life’s challenges seem overwhelming.

There’s a widely held belief that a turbulent emotional state could yield a distressing psychedelic experience – the so-called “bad trip.” But is it as straightforward as that? Is there a hard and fast rule that links emotional turmoil to negative psychedelic experiences? To find these answers, it’s essential to delve beneath the surface and understand the complex interplay between our psychological state, the Ayahuasca ceremony, and the resultant experiences.

Key takeaways: 

  • With Ayahuasca you are not experimenting with psychedelics but following a tradition of thousands of years.


  • You need to know that you are about to confront yourself and it needs to be your decision to want to go on this journey. 


  • When taken with humility, respect and confidence Ayahuasca can deliver breakthroughs in difficult times.

Table of Contents

“Venturing into psychedelics” 

The language we use to describe our experiences with psychedelics can subtly shape our expectations and outcomes. When we talk about “venturing into psychedelics,” it may invoke a sense of self-experimentation, an adventurous exploration into the unknown realms of our consciousness. This metaphor, while vivid, can carry with it a sense of risk, particularly when one is already experiencing distress.

For instance, consider the scenario of deciding to take LSD either alone or with friends, essentially stepping into the vast psychedelic landscape without a guide. This approach can appear thrilling, but it also carries potential dangers, especially if you’re already navigating through difficult times in life. The potential for an overwhelming experiences is significantly higher in such situations. 

This is where Ayahuasca stands apart. Ayahuasca is not merely a substance for casual experimentation; it is a deeply sacred plant medicine that has been used for centuries and millennials within indigenous traditions. When participating in an Ayahuasca ceremony, you’re not simply “trying something out;” rather, you’re engaging in an established, time-honored process, one that has been refined over generations and grounded in a rich tradition and wisdom. 

In Ayahuasca ceremonies, you’re not alone. Instead, you’re accompanied and guided by experienced facilitators who understand the extraordinary states of consciousness this plant medicine will induce. These guides are there to help you prepare for the experience beforehand, navigate through it, and make sense of your insights afterward. This support can be invaluable, especially when you are processing significant life struggles. Thus, the dynamic of Ayahuasca ceremonies vastly differs from unsupervised, casual psychedelic use.

Must read Blog: Ayahuasca Preparation – How to prepare for your Ayahuasca ceremony

Addressing the Concept: drinking Ayahuasca in difficult times

Psychedelics have a unique way of turning up the volume on what’s already happening inside us. If you’re navigating a turbulent time or dealing with significant fears, psychedelics, such as Ayahuasca, can magnify these experiences, bringing them front and center in your consciousness. 

This is a challenging prospect that understandably makes many apprehensive. It’s quite common to hear people express the sentiment that they need to ‘get their life in order’ before they consider an Ayahuasca journey. This mentality rests on the belief that Ayahuasca requires a pre-existing state of clarity and tranquility for it to be effective or beneficial.

However, from the conversations I’ve had with friends and others who’ve expressed this view, it seems that this ‘perfect moment’ rarely arrives. Life is seldom without its challenges or uncertainties. And, if you wait until you feel entirely ready, you might find that you’re perpetually postponing the experience.

It’s crucial to remember that you don’t need to be perfect, or have every aspect of your life figured out, before you approach Ayahuasca. This sacred plant medicine isn’t reserved for those who’ve achieved a certain level of stability or enlightenment. Instead, it can serve as a catalyst for finding that stability and clarity. 

Ayahuasca can support you in unraveling your inner complexities and healing your deepest wounds. It can aid in releasing what no longer serves you and illuminating the path towards who you aspire to be and the life you desire to live. Moreover, Ayahuasca can boost your self-esteem and confidence, equipping you with the tools to materialize your visions.

In my own journey with Ayahuasca, I found immense value in not waiting until I had everything figured out. Instead, I allowed Ayahuasca to be a part of the process of figuring it all out, and that has made all the difference.

Ayahuasca as a Master Plant:

Ayahuasca is often referred to as a ‘master plant’. This extraordinary plant medicine seems to possess an intrinsic understanding of who we are, often eclipsing our own self-perception. 

Moreover, Ayahuasca isn’t just about unveiling our hidden truths; it also seems to understand what we need for our healing journey. It’s an intuitive guide, knowing when to push, when to pull back, and when to envelop us in its nurturing embrace.

Our collective narrative around Ayahuasca often revolves around fear. There’s a common apprehension that Ayahuasca may give us a harsh, intense, even brutal wake-up call. While such radical confrontations can occur, they are not the norm.

Contrary to popular belief, Ayahuasca tends to teach in a more gentle, nurturing manner. Like a wise and compassionate mentor, it knows that change doesn’t always come from upheaval and shock, but can be born out of love, acceptance, and understanding. Many times, what we truly need on our journey isn’t a slap of reality, but a comforting hug, a sign that we’re not alone in our struggle. This nurturing approach is often what Ayahuasca provides, reminding us of the inherent compassion and love that exist within us and in the universe.

If you are struggling and looking for a safe place to drink Ayahuasca, consider our Ayahuasca Retreat Center in Colombia

Is it a good time to drink Ayahuasca when facing major life challenges??

Some might wonder, when you’re already battling internal challenges, is it wise to add the experience of Ayahuasca into the mix? Perhaps the answer is more nuanced than a simple yes or no. 

In fact, for many, struggling could be an indication that a reset is needed, a profound change that Ayahuasca could initiate. When you find yourself persistently standing in your own way, when self-sabotage seems to be the order of the day, or when a thick fog of confusion clouds your clarity, Ayahuasca might just be the light at the end of the tunnel.

Ayahuasca has the potential to aid you in these situations, clearing the fog, breaking down the walls of self-destruction, and shedding light on the darker corners of your psyche. However, this is not a process to be undertaken lightly or without due consideration.

Understanding and acceptance of the journey you’re about to go on is crucial. You should be aware that Ayahuasca is a potent medicine that will reveal deep truths about yourself and the world around you. It’s important to know that the path to healing is not always sunshine and rainbow; it requires courage and a readiness to confront suppressed aspects of yourself.

Emphasizing the following point is crutial: the decision to engage with Ayahuasca must be entirely yours. No one should force you into this journey. If someone is pressuring you into drinking Ayahuasca as a quick fix to your troubles, this is not the right approach. Your journey with Ayahuasca should be driven by your own desire for healing and transformation.

What happens when you drink Ayahuasca while struggling?

Approaching Ayahuasca when you’re going through a challenging period isn’t necessarily an easy endeavor. But let’s face it, life prior to this journey probably wasn’t a breeze either. Sometimes, it boils down to choosing your battles.

When you’re in the depths of struggle, it creates a fertile ground for transformation. Think about it. If life is just cruising along with no major issues, there’s little motivation to make significant changes. You’re more likely to remain within the bounds of your comfort zone.

On the contrary, when you’re in pain, confusion, uncertainty, fear, or an overwhelming desire for change, it’s these situations that serve as the catalyst for transformation. During such times, you’re more likely to seek hope and solutions outside of your current circumstances.

Ayahuasca can play an instrumental role in this transition. The ceremonial use of this plant medicine can facilitate a purge, a energetic release of the burdens weighing you down. It has the potential to show you a path forward, infusing you with the energy to follow this path.

When you’re facing many difficulties, having a way to alleviate your situation can be invaluable. With its deep roots in ancestral wisdom, Ayahuasca provides an avenue for such profound transformation. However, it’s important to approach this journey with an open heart and a prepared mind, ready to face the changes that it may catalyze within you.

Conclusion: Drinking Ayahuasca in difficult times

Before we finish up, it’s crucial to include a word of caution. It is absolutely essential that you receive medical clearance before choosing to drink Ayahuasca. If you are currently taking antidepressants or dealing with any psychiatric conditions, Ayahuasca is not advisable for you. Engaging with Ayahuasca while on certain medications or with specific mental health conditions could lead to adverse reactions.

But once you’re medically cleared, and if you feel called to Ayahuasca, we would be honored to facilitate this powerful experience for you. It’s a journey that requires courage and commitment, but it also holds the potential for profound healing and growth.

Remember, the journey of Ayahuasca is not merely an attempt at self-experimentation, but a sacred tradition that has provided healing and wisdom for generations. With the right guidance and the right intention, it might be the transformative experience that propels you forward, even during your darkest times.

We warmly welcome you to join us on this journey and explore the healing power of Ayahuasca. Remember, every journey begins with a single step, and we are here to guide you every step of the way.


It is not a bad idea to drink Ayahuasca when you are struggling, however you really have to know what you are getting yourself into. Understanding that the journey with Ayahuasca is not a magic pill but will give you homework to do to get your life in order. Ayahuasca can help you overcome lifes challenges, however this could also mean intensifying the journey you are on.

The risks of drinking Ayahuasca when you are struggling is that you are not medically cleared to drink Ayahuasca and you do it anyway. Especially (but not limited to) psychiatric conditions and antidepressant medications can be a problem when drinking Ayahuasca. (also when you are not facing major life challenges). Also, when going in this process because you are forced to do it can involve risks of things being presented to you that you are not ready to deal with.

How does your body feel, when thinking about Ayahuasca? A certain nervousness and anxiety is normal. However, deep down, do you feel like Ayahuasca can be beneficial for you? When listening to the stories of the people who went through their transformation, do you feel repelled or inspired? Those can be indications whether you are ready for Ayahuasca, or not. And most importantly have conversations with the people where you consider drinking Ayahuasca and see how you feel when talking with them. 

You might also enjoy
Open chat
Hola, if you have any questions around Ayahuasca, I am happy to answer your questions. Just shoot me a message and we talk soon.