At Quitnet, we’ve spent quite a bit of time talking about the science behind getting high. In this post, we’re going to talk about what the experience actually feels like. We asked several Quitnet readers to explain their experience when getting high. The answers we received were fascinating. If you ever asked the question, “what does it feel like to be high?” – this post is for you. 

The effects of marijuana

If you’ve never smoked weed and have always wanted to figure out how it would feel, there really is no frame of reference available to you. There is no existing range of experiences that come close to being under the influence of the marijuana plant.

Different people have different effects to smoking marijuana.

This is what makes it hard to describe the experience.

what does being high feel like?

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If this sounds like something you might be interested in, we suggest trying out the products from cbdMD (rated #1 in our latest research of the best CBD oils on the market).

Let’s get back to the topic of marijuana, and what a typical high feels like.

Different people’s response time for getting high varies tremendously. However, if you smoke or vape weed, generally speaking, you should be able to feel it within seconds. After you have introduced marijuana into your system, people usually peak anywhere between 15 minutes to half an hour.

The effect then levels off for a few minutes and then completely fades away after about four hours. Please note that this is not the same for all people. Leveling off or “wind-down” periods also depend on how strong the weed you smoked or ingested is. Some very strong strains take a longer time to wear off. Likewise, nobody can guarantee the exact duration of your specific personal marijuana trip.

Still, we can give you five distinct experiences narrated by different users so you can get a rough idea of what you should expect if you smoke weed. We asked several Quitnet readers to describe their experience and feelings when getting high.

If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to smoke marijuana, this is the post for you.

These stories were submitted to us by Quitnet readers. If you have a story to tell about your experience when getting high, let us know.


I’ve smoked weed in the past. But every time I do it, I still get the feeling that it’s some sort of “event.” Usually, I prefer ingesting THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) using a bong. This delivers a stronger hit and typically, within seconds, I can clearly tell that I’m high. Of course, this comes with quite the coughing fit. It takes a bit of effort to keep from coughing. I tend to like indica strains over sativa strains, but everyone will have their own personal preference.

Once a minute or so passes, when I look at the scene around me, everything looks like a blur. This is especially true for my peripheral vision. Right in front of me, things are clear enough. But when it comes to the sides of my field of vision, things get blurry. Also, I would note, things actually get much brighter despite this.

Another thing I noticed is that things start to slow down. The pace at which everything moves around me, as well as my ability to see things, slows down quite a bit. It’s not a dramatic change, but you can tell that there is a lag. My breathing rate also goes down. This is usually a good time to sit back and chill out to some music.

I feel that when I’m listening to great music while I’m high, I’m really able to appreciate it more. Instead of just perceiving simple sounds, I actually feel like I’m “feeling” the whole song. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but it seems like every guitar string, the beat of the drum and strum of the bass, hits me distinctively and deeply. Oh, and you can’t forget the munchies – the phrase stoners use when they’re starving for food after smoking weed.

what does it feel like to be high?

It’s as if I can feel the different signals sent by the instruments in the song. I know it sounds weird, but this is what happens when I listen to music. This is also the time when a sense of happiness just rushes over me. It feels really incredible. This goes on for what feels like five whole minutes, but when I look at my phone and see the timer of the music player that I’m using, it turns out that only half a minute has passed. You really lose a sense of time when you are stoned.


I know it sounds weird, but when I’m high, I feel like Marvel’s Daredevil character Matthew Murdoch. If you’re a comic nerd, you’d know he’s blind. He got blinded when radioactive stuff fell off the back of a truck. The substance was supposed to hit somebody else, but he pushed the other guy out of the way and he got blinded as a result.

effects of being high

Because of this tragic accident, the radioactive effect on his senses compensated for his loss of sight. It’s as if all his other senses got magnified many times over, so he’s actually much more aware of his surroundings before he got blinded. I share this story from Marvel comics to give you a rough estimate of what it’s like to get high using cannabis.

After a few minutes, it seems like all my senses are taken to a much higher level. No pun intended. I’m talking about my ability to see, taste, smell, hear and touch. I just feel extremely sensitive. For example, when I eat pepperoni pizza, it seems like I can detect new tastes and textures with each bite I take. Similarly, when I listen to music that I have listened to before, it seems like a new experience. I would hear nuances in the music that I wasn’t aware of before.

Also, when I smell scents that I’m familiar with, it’s as if I can distinguish certain details about them that make them seem new. Of course, sometimes my senses get so enhanced that it seems weird. I can’t quite describe it. When it comes to my thoughts, I can tell that they’re profoundly different. When I think about memories and issues I may have, it really blows my mind that I’m able to connect the dots in a way that I’m unable to when I’m sober. You know they say marijuana makes you creative. It really does.

It’s weird. My powers of introspection are really enhanced when I smoke pot. In fact, I never thought that I was capable of such deep emotional self-analysis until I got high and started thinking about my personal life. It’s as if I was able to slice and dice all this information in a new way that makes me feel empowered. It’s easy to feel stuck when you’re grappling with the difficult stuff.

But when I think about these after smoking weed, I feel like there’s a way out. I feel like there’s hope. Again, I can’t quite put my finger on it. I have to say that it’s not always positive, though. Sometimes this highly detailed analysis is quickly overshadowed by a sense of paranoia. I get really scared. This is why I would suggest new weed users to just mellow out. Remember, too much of anything isn’t good for you.

Don’t think about deeply personal issues until you get accustomed to smoking weed. Once you have attained some level of discipline or at least you know how things work out, then you can play around with your thoughts.


When I smoke weed, I feel like the whole world is looking at me. I don’t mean that in a bad way. It’s actually quite enjoyable. It’s like all eyes are on you. It takes some time for weed to hit me. It doesn’t hit me like a ton of bricks. It’s never instantaneous. I guess what makes these effects enjoyable to me is the fact that you kind of already expect the intoxication.

Depending on what you’re smoking, it takes about a minute. But the sense of anticipation that you get before everything starts to hit is a lot of fun. It’s kind of like waiting for something really good to happen. When it does take place, it’s fairly subtle. It kicks in a little bit, but you know something is happening. It gets more and more intense after that.

You know that you’ve reached a totally different level when it seems like you’re weightless. It’s also a lot harder for you to get distracted. It’s as if all these side distractions just start to fade some way in the back of your mind. After a few more minutes, any kind of anxiety that you may have had about getting high completely melt away. It just leaves your mind and body. Personally, this is when the magic happens.

At this point, it seems like I am the center of my personal universe. There is nobody watching, but everything centers on me. I also get this really interesting feeling that whenever I’m just hanging out in my room, high as a kite, I feel like I’m invisible.

what does it feel like when you're high?


One of the weirdest things that ever happened to me took place when I was stoned. It turned out that the weed that I smoked did not cause this bizarre experience. However, it actually solved my problem. I was walking along a nature trail close to where I lived. I was very familiar with this trail. I’ve walked on it several times before.

This time, I was high. I really liked walking on the trail, but I would stop every once in a while to smoke more weed. When I did this, I noticed that everything around me seemed more lively, vivid and bright. All my senses were just lit. I can smell the trees’ scent, the brightness of the leaves around me and the chirping of the birds. It was a complete experience and it seemed like I was wrapped in this sensory ball of nature.

It was like I was both witnessing and experiencing the sights, sounds, tastes, smells and textures of nature all around me. As I was going through the trail, I heard this weird sound. It sounded like a mix of low growling and branches breaking. I thought that I was hearing it from a source in front of me. After what seemed like a few moments, I noticed that it was actually coming from above.

After looking up, I saw that there was this angry-looking bear circling a tree. Instead of instantly freaking out and running away, I was so stoned that I felt that my only choice was to slowly walk backward while keeping my eyes locked on the bear. You probably already know that freaking out and getting the hell out of there as quickly as possible would have been a very dangerous choice.

Usually, the bear would also freak out, chase you, and the ending is probably not all that happy. When the bear saw me backing away bit by bit, it started moving away from me. It turned out, the more I looked at the bear, I realized it was actually a fairly young cub. It was obvious that we were mutually scared of each other.

I kept moving backwards slowly until I was at a safe distance and I ran back home. I am so happy that weed saved my life that day.


Speaking for myself, there’s nothing like smoking weed to make you truly grateful for whatever you have. When I’m stoned (I prefer indica strains over sativa), whatever doubts, fears and anxieties I may have about my life, quickly evaporate. It’s as if they disappear like magic. This is really hard to explain, but it’s like you enter this magical space in your mind when you smoke weed.

Whatever hang-ups you may have or negative thoughts that kind of cling to you completely melt away. I’m a very skeptical person by nature, yet when I smoke really good marijuana, my focus shifts. Instead of worrying about what’s wrong in my life or stuff that I really can’t control in the world, I pay attention to the things that are going right.

This might seem silly, but I don’t feel the weight of the world. I don’t obsess about what’s wrong. If you’re reading this, I suggest that you close your eyes after you smoke weed. When you do that, your mind focuses on your thoughts and you’d be surprised about what mental images show up. To this day, I still get a kick out of the memories I can recall from when I smoked marijuana.

marijuana spirituality

I completely forgot about these memories, but when I smoked weed, they all came rushing back and I can’t help but feel happy. It’s like I’m physically unable to be unhappy, stressed or worried.


We shared five anecdotes above from different types of weed smokers. We tried to get a nice cross-section among both casual and heavy users. Still, keep in mind that these are individual experiences. Nobody can guarantee that you will experience weed the exact same way or even in a similar way. Your marijuana journey will be as unique as your personality.

Every marijuana journey really is a very personal one. Who knows? It might retrieve memories from when you were a little kid spending some time with your family several decades ago. Or you might view the world from this very high place and come to the realization that, ultimately, nothing really matters because we are all stardust. Being high on weed brings about unique feelings, emotions, and experiences for everyone.

There is a wide range of possible states of mind you can achieve. You can enter a contemplative state. You might feel a nice surge of energy. You might get introspective all of a sudden or you might just feel ridiculously happy. The best thing about all of this is that you get a really comforting sense of control because, in this world locked inside your mind, you are in the driver’s seat.

This is a world of your making. The normal restrictions of space and time simply stop working. Again, these are just ranges of possible experiences. Nobody can really guarantee a specific experience. However, we can safely say one thing: getting high on weed is almost never boring. That’s something you can always look forward to.