Citation: Greg. "Supreme Productivity: An Experience with Coffee & Methylphenidate (Concerta) (exp37575)". Erowid.org. Jun 20, 2006. erowid.org/exp/37575
Background - It is my junior year (1st quarter still) now and I am struggling a great amount in school. Last year, with my character encompassing much procrastination, I had lined up an extremely difficult school year, considering my work ethic. I had chosen several AP classes and other challenging courses with the idea in mind that I would regret not taking them later, but now I realize that those selections were a bad move. With the inability to change my schedule, I have been struggling through these classes fairly successfully so far.
While these classes are very doable, this past summer, I have greatly changed my way of thinking and though I now have a much deeper and philosophic way of thinking about life, I find it harder to concentrate in school and such similar activities. It is difficult to explain, but in summary, I have much desire to achieve in school and am willing to spend all resources (time mainly) doing so; however, I find it extremely hard to harness motivation to do so, it is almost like deep down I really don’t give a fuck, and I cannot force myself to sit there and work, or care about it all in general. I have often sat there and stared at a blank MS Word screen for hours, into the next morning with no success in completion.
Coffee has helped me to gain some source of motivation for essays and other school work. While I am unsure weather the fact that work gets done after chugging 5 or so cups is, in fact, a placebo effect or directly related to the stimulation from the coffee, the energy is definitely there. I have stayed up all night on several occasions with coffee as a great assist. Though this has worked for me somewhat effectively, I have recently had the desire to experiment with drugs used to treat ADD, feeling they would help me gain further, much needed motivation.
Experience – I had recently been pushing my mom to take me to see a doctor, in hope for a receiving the necessary prescription to obtain such a medication. That is still in process; however, about three weeks ago, after discussion about my struggles in school, my girlfriend offered me her concerta pills she had stashed away, with the explanation that she did not like taking them because they had made her feel overly nervous and anxious. I quickly accepted the bottle of about 40 or so 18mg pills. I have been taking them since with much satisfaction.
Taking one or two pills every morning, in my experience, in the past couple of weeks, has been very effective. However, the drugs seem to work in a very subconscious way. With proper dosage, I never really realize the effects of the drug until I take a second to evaluate the current performance I am exerting. I will be sitting in class, feeling entirely indifferent, but then after remembering I had taken the medication, I realize that I have been paying abnormal (for me) amounts of attention the whole time in class. I was definitely doing much better in school, able to sustain lectures with ease, and understand all concepts as a result of the greatly improved attention effect of the drug.
It wasn’t long before I had incorporated this drug, into my all night work sessions. I had been in the habit of staying up all night to get work done because there were no distractions at these hours, so as a result I was much more productive. One night, I ended up ingesting the following:
8:00pm – 2 18mg concerta
10:00pm – 2 18mg concerta
10:30pm – 5 cups (measurement not actual glassware)
11:30 – 1 18mg concerta and 5 more cups of coffee
3:30 (about) – 3 more cups of coffee
I sat around listening to music and such, feeling the effects of the coffee. I had the usual, slight buzz and a great increase in energy. However, I hadn’t yet felt the effects of the concerta. It had not peaked yet, but about an hour later, I felt the first effects of it. With the main objective in mind being a couple of reports and theses, I decided to start my school work. This seemed to spark the concerta. I had never before felt so stimulated. I was a machine that was completing assignments with ease. Every word of the essays seemed to appear into my head instantly, and with the ability to quickly focus greatly on anything school related, I had produced great essays. (This self-described greatness of the essays was confirmed not to be a cause of some false sense of confidence caused by the concerta, after reading them later.
My ability to read amazed me, as I could simply scan text as fast as my eyes could move, and comprehend it all at the same rate. I felt like superman and I had never felt so smart and clear minded (focused you could say) ever before. With this peaking at around 3 or 4 am, I decided to take a break and experience the drug differently from the schoolwork I had enjoyed. I decided to drink the last of the coffee (2 or 3 cups) and after being up from my chair, I noticed that I had been feeling somewhat tingly in my extremities. Throughout this time, I was feeling extremely speedy and energetic.
All of the sudden something jumped into my mind and I started tripping out. It wasn’t towards anything specific, but I had felt extremely scared at the moment. I was experiencing great paranoia and I could not control it. Having no fear of overdosing or health problems of any sort, which I have read about in some experiences of others using concerta, my fear was not directed towards anything, I was simply extremely scared. I began to hallucinate along with the fear. I saw things moving in the corners of my eyes and such.
The state of intense fear was very uncomfortable, so I figured I would try and distract myself with the schoolwork I had been working on. This worked quickly, and I had snapped out and forgotten about the 6-10 minute period of paranoia and fear. I was back to typing and I was again amazed of the fact of how much work I was getting done. Throughout this time, I had noticed something that had made me understand how my girlfriend had felt when she stated a feeling of anxiety and nervousness as an effect of these pills. When working on my schoolwork, there were times when I had looked at the clock and felt an extreme urge to work faster in order to get it done sooner. This was unexpected and unnecessary, considering I had the whole night to work on shit and had already completed what was due that day. However, I could not stop worrying about the time factor. I understand that the urge to make the most of time and be as productive as possible is a cause of these feelings, but this inability to relax is a consequence of concerta at high doses apparently.
The perspective of time was another factor that I had found interesting. I would look at the clock and be amazed that only 10 minutes had passed by. Concerta, for me, seemed to greatly elongate my perspective of time. Eventually, it was around 6:00am, and I decided to take a shower. With the concerta weaker than it had been, it was still effective. After taking a shower, I was shocked after I had seen the clock and realized how long I had been: 3 minutes.
Conclusion – Still awaiting a prescription for this drug, I believe that it is a great answer to the search for motivation. Though I don’t believe that ADD or AHDD (?) is indeed a “disorder,” more than it is a simple difference in an individuals’ character and mindset. For me, it does what it is supposed to do, and makes school much easier as a result. When taken in high enough doses, a speedy result occurs, and in my opinion it is a fun experience, being able to think much quicker and accurate for a period of time. The combination of coffee or other caffeine sources and concerta is the ultimate productivity enhancer. The coffee provides much energy, and the concerta adds to it, while providing an ability to focus that extreme amount of energy into a single subject with much ease and control, like a fucking laser. One more thing I would like to note is that I noticed that concerta seems to be effective solely for school and related activities. As a result, if I wanted to clean my room or something similar to that, surprisingly, I had felt no increased urge to do so.
Addiction and the crash – I haven’t been taking concerta for more than three weeks or so, so I can not provide a very accurate description of the addiction or habit of the drug. However, I have noticed that I am always tempted to take more of this, with hope of further stimulation because I enjoy it greatly. I must also note a detail about the uniqueness of the crash of concerta, an experience that I have not experienced before with any other substance.
For me, coming down off concerta (much more noticeable with higher doses), is not so much a decrease in mood or related factors. In my experience, it is, however, a very steep fall in regard to energy alone. My lack of sleep during my all night sessions with concerta obviously contributed to this, but consistently, I have noticed a very noticeable and EXTREMELY sudden drop of energy and, the overall effect of the medication. This took me by surprise on all occasions; in 1st or 2nd hour, I experienced a very sudden rise (I’m talking within a half minute) of fatigue, contributed by the concerta, because I had experienced it without coffee present in a couple occasions.
The sudden fatigue was so intense that I would go from paying attention with ease like I was able to for hours, to passing out, face down on the desk, with the inability or desire to keep my eyes focused. They would simply shut, and I would pass out in intervals and wake up without knowing I had fallen asleep in the first place. Though being very familiar, this was to a much more extreme degree, with the only solution being: drinking (more in some cases) coffee or taking more concerta in the morning, which delays the crash another 4 or 5 hours. Keep in mind, I’ve only experienced this crash when staying up all night after taking 5-6 of the pills. The regular, daily crash, while noticeable, is mind and very easy to cope with.
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