The sea change of medicinal and recreational cannabis legalization has brought a lot of inexperienced smokers to the circle as legal and stigmatic barriers have fallen away. That being the case, a lot of newbies are wondering what to expect when they smoke weed for the first time.

Let’s dive into it.

What Happens When You Smoke Weed for the First Time?

There are a number of reactions that are common to first time weed smokers:

1. Nothing happens.

For many people, their first smoking experience is something of a letdown. They smoke, and nothing seems to happen. People have varying theories on what causes this, but the most likely answer is that first time smokers don’t yet know to inhale into their lungs rather than just into their mouth.

2 .You get really, really high – in a good way.

That’s right, there isn’t much middle ground. Either you don’t do it right so it doesn’t work, or it works and it really works.

What does that mean? It depends on the individual and the strain of weed. It’s really difficult to explain what “being high” is to someone who’s never experienced it, but here are a few things that might happen:

- You enjoy a euphoric, uplifted feeling.

- Everything becomes funny and you can’t stop laughing.

- Your senses become heightened, and inputs like color, light, and sound all take on a stronger or at least different quality.

- You get hungry.

- Any nausea you’re feeling goes away.

- You feel physically at ease.

There are a variety of other things that might occur, but these are a few you’re likely to notice.

3. You get high – in a bad way.

No seasoned stoner likes to admit to it, but weed doesn’t always have a positive affect depending on the circumstances – especially for newbies.

What are a few things that happen during a bad high?

- Paranoia

- Sadness

- Physical discomfort

- Confusion

If you experience any of these things, the important thing to keep in mind is that they will go away shortly, and that you can usually solve them by changing your circumstances, i.e., moving locations, putting on music, finding something funny to watch, going for a walk, or whatnot.

4. Time gets tricky.

It’s not uncommon to let the clock get away from you when you’re stoned. One minute you’re clicking over to YouTube, and the next thing you know six hours have gone by. (I know this can happen even when you’re not smoking weed, but pot certainly tends to exacerbate the situation.)
5. You open up.

Smoking weed can be a huge bonding experience, especially for first time smokers. Don’t be surprised if you and the people you’re smoking with end up spending some time sharing secrets and discussing intimate aspects of your personal life.
6. You get profound – or at least feel profound.

You will likely end up making a lot of statements like, “Have you ever noticed how really big things tend to resemble really small things?” Or, “Dude – have you ever tried to look at your back in a mirror? It turns out there’s this whole other side of you.” And the response to this from your stoned friend: “Do you mean another side physically, or another side mentally?” Whoa.

Profundity – whether real or imagined – is a central theme of weed smoking. Embrace it. These are the realizations that will at most make you wiser, and at least make you laugh a lot.

7. You worry (probably).

When most people smoke weed for the first time, they’ll often find themselves worried or at least attentive to considerations to which experienced pot smokers rarely give a thought.

Newbies worry that “people know” they’re high. They worry that their eyes are red, or that they smell like smoke. They worry about getting in conversations with people who aren’t stoned. These kinds of concerns tend to fall short of paranoia, but the worry is still there.

Here’s the thing – your worries are almost always unfounded. No one knows you’re high, and if they can recognize that you are it almost certainly means that they smoke themselves.

So what should you expect when you smoke weed for the first time? That you’ll enjoy very real euphoria, giggles, and hunger, dubious profundity, and unnecessary concern. Just about everyone tends to experience some balance of all these things.

What I’m saying is, the assured good outweighs the potential bad. And in the event that things do feel less than enjoyable, I prescribe your favorite song, a funny video, or a sunset.