What does paranoia feel like?

Personally speaking; paranoia feels like a constant fear and suspicion that the people around you are talking about you with malicious intent to ruin your life and expose your inner thoughts and desires. Everywhere feels unsafe and these overwhelmingly negative thoughts can easily become disruptive in your life.

What causes paranoia?

Even though this thought process is usually irrational, there are circumstances where you can in fact, find yourself in situations where people are talking about you, and you are unsafe because of certain legalities. For example, persecution for using cannabis is something that can actually happen due to current legislation, therefore paranoia stemming from personal cannabis use is very legitimate and is nothing to be ashamed of.

Also, in a workplace or school setting (i.e. college campus) there are instances where you can be surrounded by cliques, malicious gossip, bullying, or sexual harassment due to stigmas associated with a certain race, gender or lifestyle.

What can be done to control paranoia?

For me, the most helpful tip of all is simply stop caring what others think about you. Accept that there are mean people in the world, everyone is human, and no one is perfect including yourself. Someone’s opinion of you should have no effect on the way that you decide to live your life. Keep in mind that people have their own problems, think about it: if someone has a negative opinion about you, that’s their own problem that they have to carry around and deal with personally.

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Meditation is also an extremely effective way to combat paranoia and negative thoughts while boosting productivity. You can read more about it here.

Finally, it’s about time our society gets over the outdated stigma surrounding cannabis and legalizes it for recreational use. It’s important to be informed and show others that this type of behaviour is only detrimental to society as a whole, so spread the word!