The stereotypical stoner is lazy. The truth of the matter, however, is that cannabis improves productivity. It grants you access to the more creative bits of your brain. It clears away the clutter from your mind, helping you to focus.

Linda Gilbert is head of the consumer research division of the cannabis research firm BDS Analytics. She pointed out that cannabis consumers are more likely to socialise, volunteer, like their lives and enjoy exercise and the outdoors. BDS Analytics also found that cannabis users were more likely to have master’s degrees than non-users (20 percent compared to 12 percent) and to have started a family (64 percent versus 55 percent). Study elsewhere found that cannabis users were more likely to have a full-time job (64 percent compared to 54 percent of others).

You wouldn't want the person flying the aeroplane you were on to be stoned, but apart from that, cannabis improves productivity. Photo: AFL-CIO America's Unions

You wouldn’t want the person flying the aeroplane you were on to be stoned, but, apart from that, cannabis improves productivity. Photo: AFL-CIO America’s Unions

Cannabis makes you more creative

One of the greatest benefits of cannabis is that it makes you more creative. Cannabis opens doors in your mind that you wouldn’t consider in a sober condition. It allows you to come up with unique solutions to problems. This is true not just of writers and painters but also lawyers and other businesspeople.

Studies going as far back as 1970 have shown that cannabis improves productivity. It does so by making its users have more original thoughts. An article in Psychology Today examined a study in 2011 of how cannabis was linked to creativity. It read that cannabis’s psychoactive effects, which it flashly termed “psychotomimetic symptoms”, might enable folk to connect “seemingly unrelated concepts, an aspect of divergent thinking considered primary to creative thinking.”

Cannabis reduces distractions

You’ll have noticed that after puffing on a J, you easily lose yourself in a book or TV programme. But it’s just as easy to lose yourself in your work, so cannabis improves producivity.

Cannabis makes you sleep better

People with demanding jobs are more prone to insomnia. It has been proven that cannabis reduces the symptoms of insomnia. A good sleep schedule will keep you on track and better your productivity throughout the day. Cannabis improves productivity, donchaknow?

Cannabis relaxes but doesn’t debilitate you

If you have too much work to do, cannabis will relax you but, unlike alcohol, will mean you still get work done. So cannabis improves productivity once more.

Cannabis doesn’t make you work slower

A study of seven men found that productivity fell when they took cannabis. It declined further the more cannabis they took. Productivity returned to normal when they stopped taking cannabis. This study, however, discovered that the stoned men didn’t work slower. They instead spent their time on other tasks that entertained them.

When not to do cannabis

Use of cannabis should be prohibited if safety of workers or the public is an issue: airline pilots and crane operators are two good examples. Employers can reasonably require their workers to abstain from using recreational drugs at least 12 hours before a shift.

Legalisation of cannabis in Canada didn’t negatively impact productivity

An online survey was conducted in Canada by Ipsos on behalf of the human resources company ADP Canada. It found that most respondents believed legalisation of the drug on October 18 2018 hadn’t negatively impacted workers’ productivity. 74 percent of people thought there had been no impact on productivity. 71 percent saw no increase in absenteeism. Prior to legalisation, 46 percent felt productivity would be hit and 40 percent expected absenteeism to rise. Nadia Haljum Arauz is an employment lawyer at Toronto’s MacLeod Law Firm. She remarked that, before legalisation, the employers she worked with expected the worst: “To them, the sky was falling.” After legalisation, “It makes sense to me that the impact hasn’t been high as people were fearing it to be.”

Some proof

Kaestner’s 1991 study found that people who used cannabis or coke had earnings that were between 17 and 19 percent higher than those of non-drug-users. Register & Williams’s 1992 study found the net effect of cannabis use on productivity was positive. A study undertaken in 2016 went by the title of A Pilot Study Assessing the Impact of Medical Marijuana on Executive Function. It demonstrated that cannabis improves productivity in people who have taken medical marijuana for three months, with them completing tasks in less time and without more errors. More such studies are out there.

It’s testing for drugs that reduces productivity

A study by New York’s Le Moyne College Institute of Industrial Relations looked at 63 high tech firms. It found that productivity was almost 20 percent lower in companies with pre-employment or random drug testing. Its authors suggested this was because it created “a negative work environment” and led to “substitutions of more dangerous drugs”.

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