Actively elevated in the new year

A new decade is just around the corner, so here are eight goals cannabis-related goals to consider in the new year

Does a new year have to mean a new cannabis consumer? In an industry with seemingly unlimited upside potential but a lot of bumps in the road, yes, it does. California’s cannabis industry is constantly changing, which means that any dyed-in-the-wool enthusiast should be open to innovating, trying new things and growing alongside the scene. For 2020, let’s all resolve to push ourselves. Here are eight cannabis-related resolutions to consider that can help those of us who enjoy cannabis make better and more informed choices—and maybe learn something new.

1. Visit more cannabis states

One of my greatest joys of the past year has been visiting Barcelona, Vancouver, Washington and Alaska to see what their local cannabis markets are cooking up, literally and figuratively. In the new year, make it a point to visit more places with legalized cannabis: Oregon, Colorado, Massachusetts … maybe Uruguay? It’s fascinating how so many concurrent industries are growing alongside one another at the same time, and there’s a lot to learn from the successes and failures of each. Rather than focusing on other destinations, make sure that your travels are exceptionally canna-friendly.

2. Be actively elevated

Like many cannabis enthusiasts, I, too, have a bit of a habit of hunkering down with a fat joint, ordering food and not doing much else. The truth is, weed is great for so many other things, including exercise. If you’re a fellow hiker, in 2020 make more of an effort to get off the couch and onto the trail while consuming.

3. Be diligent about quality

Walking into a new dispensary for the first time is so exciting that being mindful about research sometimes flies out the window. For the legal market to succeed, and even soar, it first needs to tackle its issues of quality control, which have been hampered by the misconduct of various companies and the serious and ongoing vape crisis. When shopping for cannabis during the new year, make it a priority to ensure that all companies have good quality control standards in place, such as independent testing and certificates of analysis.

4. Buy local

In a state as large as California, cannabis users are truly spoiled. One of the best things about visiting full-recreational dispensaries throughout the state in the last two years has been getting to sample local brands that aren’t as easy to find outside of the cities where the products are made. While it’s cool to buy different edibles and topicals from all over the Golden State, in 2020 make an effort to buy more local products—whether at home or on vacation—to help ensure mom-and-pop companies survive the battle with larger corporations.

5. Learn how to roll better joints

It’s easy to become lazy with the abundance of pre-roll options found in local dispensaries, or the added convenience of ordering products through delivery services. And though I think my joint-rolling prowess has markedly improved in the last year, the truth is, I’m still relying on other people to do it for me (as well as a newfound quality pre-roll habit I’ve acquired). There are many ways to consume cannabis, but joints remain a throwback favorite among consumers. It’s a ritual that harkens back to a simpler time, so let’s not lose that skill.

6. Support socially-conscious companies

There are wide-ranging discrepancies in the cannabis industry, such as how many people are still in jail while California’s luxury cannabis scene takes off and myriad environmental issues. Still, some companies are doing a better job than others righting the wrongs caused by prohibition; everyone who purchases cannabis should prioritize shopping from those companies. Lowell Herb Co. in Santa Barbara, for example, claims it prioritizes those with cannabis convictions during its hiring process, while Ocean Cannabis Company, from Los Angeles, flexes its socially-conscious muscle by making its required child-resistant tubes out of 100% plastic harvested from trash found in the ocean.

7. Ditch the indica/sativa dichotomy

It’s becoming more and more widely accepted that the indica/sativa binary is nothing more than a gut feeling based on just that—feelings. The difference between the plants are mainly physical, which doesn’t result in any difference in physical or mental feelings when metabolized in humans. Look forward to more conversations about cannabinoids and terpenes rather than discussing indica versus sativa versus hybrid.

8. Grow your own

I’m one of those people who can easily kill a succulent, which is a big reason why I’ve tricked myself into thinking that I don’t need to grow my own bud. But growing decent enough sun-grown weed isn’t that hard to experiment with, so I think if someone is ingesting it, it behooves them to learn about the plant inside and out. In 2020, let’s all finally commit to growing our first cannabis plants. is a good resource to start.