Cannabis reduces short-term motivation to work for money: study

cannabis
Cannabis indica. Credit: Wikipedia

Smoking the equivalent of a single 'spliff' of cannabis makes people less willing to work for money while 'high', finds a new UCL study.

The research, published in Psychopharmacology, is the first to reliably demonstrate the short-term effects of cannabis on in humans. The researchers also tested motivation in people who were addicted to cannabis but not high during the test, and found that their motivation levels were no different to volunteers in the control group.

"Although cannabis is commonly thought to reduce motivation, this is the first time it has been reliably tested and quantified using an appropriate sample size and methodology," says lead author Dr Will Lawn (UCL Clinical Psychopharmacology). "It has also been proposed that long-term cannabis users might also have problems with motivation even when they are not high. However, we compared people dependent on cannabis to similar controls, when neither group was intoxicated, and did not find a difference in motivation. This tentatively suggests that long-term cannabis use may not result in residual motivation problems when people stop using it. However, longitudinal research is needed to provide more conclusive evidence."

57 volunteers were involved in the research, which consisted of two separate studies. The first involved 17 adult volunteers who all used cannabis occasionally. Through a balloon, they inhaled cannabis vapour on one occasion and cannabis-placebo vapour on separate occasion. Straight after, they completed a task designed to measure their motivation for earning money. This was a real-life task as the volunteers were given money they had earned at the end of the experiment.

In each trial of the task, volunteers could choose whether to complete low- or high-effort tasks to win varying sums of money. The low-effort option involved pressing the spacebar key with the little finger of their non-dominant hand 30 times in 7 seconds to win 50p. The high-effort option involved 100 space bar presses in 21 seconds, for rewards varying from 80p to £2.

"Repeatedly pressing keys with a single finger isn't difficult but it takes a reasonable amount of effort, making it a useful test of motivation," explains senior author Professor Val Curran (UCL Clinical Psychopharmacology). "We found that people on cannabis were significantly less likely to choose the high-effort option. On average, volunteers on placebo chose the high-effort option 50% of the time for a £2 reward, whereas volunteers on cannabis only chose the high-effort option 42% of the time."

In the second study, 20 people addicted to cannabis were matched with 20 control participants who reported the same levels of non-cannabis drug use. Participants were not allowed to consume alcohol or drugs, other than tobacco or coffee, for 12 hours before the study. They were then asked to perform the same motivation task as participants in the first study. The results showed that cannabis-dependent were no less motivated than the control group. However, much more research is needed to fully understand the relationship between long-term use and possible amotivational deficits.


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User comments

Sep 02, 2016
Pain makes people less willing to work for money while suffering.

Sep 02, 2016
The same did coca leaves that were chewed in South America. Slave fuel.

Sep 02, 2016
I'm seventy one years old and living NYC it was those who used the drug "Alcohol" who were the largest group of non working slackers .They were called "BUMS". Never have I came across a single "Skid Row" where the bums or derelicts are those who only and exclusively used cannabis. Wall St NYC has it's share of "Hustlers" who do enjoy their cannabis vapes. There is no equivalent to the no account slacker who with arrears owing child support called the"Barfly".......None.

Sep 02, 2016
It's called amotivational syndrome, and has been well known for a very long time. I'd explain a bit more but I can't be bothered.

Sep 02, 2016
According to a new study published in the journal Health Economics, the legalization of medical cannabis is associated with a decrease in the total number of workplace absences that are caused by sickness.
For the study, researchers analyzed workplace data in 24 states that have enacted laws allowing for the medical use of cannabis.
"Utilizing the Current Population Survey, the study identifies that absences due to sickness decline following the legalization of medical marijuana", states the study's abstract.
It continues; "The effect is stronger in states with 'lax' medical marijuana regulations, for full-time workers, and for middle-aged males, which is the group most likely to hold medical marijuana cards."

Sep 02, 2016
This is handled by "pot smokers" the same as booze by most people. There is a time and place for the stuff and its NOT at work. Save it until you get home. I've smoked since I was 19 and now am 67 after working a fulfilling career as an IT Technical Specialist and network/operations management in a large forest company. Never, and I repeat, never was pot consumed until after work. Period. The beauty of pot is you can leave it alone and not have the tug of needing a toke. I go on annual vacations out of country and smoke nothing for the entire trip. It doesn't even cross my mind. Good habits beat dependency every time.

Sep 02, 2016
Only 3 less people chose it when stoned compared to the control. 10 in control chose the hard one, about 7 in the stoned group. Lets see it in a larger group. Also, it says people in the sober non control group were told not to do anything including pot, was the original stoned group restricted to simply pot? Was anyone drug tested to make sure they werent on anything else? And were any of the stoned and the sobered up group the same?

Sep 03, 2016
I'd like to see a study that gauges the percentage of workers who had smoked cannabis prior to shooting their boss or coworkers at their stultifying and humiliating jobs.

Sep 05, 2016
"Drugs will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no drugs." -fabulous furry freak brothers

-This is the reason that tobacco and alcohol are the preferred state-sponsored drugs.

Tobacco especially - it is nothing more than addiction, the next cigarette doing absolutely nothing but treating your withdrawal symptoms from the last.

You have no problem driving or operating heavy machinery, and you have to keep working (and paying taxes) in order to afford it.

Sep 05, 2016
The beauty of pot is you can leave it alone and not have the tug of needing a toke. I go on annual vacations out of country and smoke nothing for the entire trip. It doesn't even cross my mind. Good habits beat dependency every time
Nice anecdotal evidence. I've talked to tobacco smokers who claim that they only smoke once in awhile.

Your alleged experience says nothing about the average pot smoker.

Sep 06, 2016
Tobacco especially - it is nothing more than addiction, the next cigarette doing absolutely nothing but treating your withdrawal symptoms from the last.

It's the same with coffee. I once read that 90% of cups of coffee are drunk just to take off the effect of caffeine withdrawal when the last coffee cup starts to wear off. I just can't find the source though.

Sep 06, 2016
Again, as stated earlier, cannabis is non addictive. Someone may mentally form a "must have" yet their not having cannabis does not create a body wrenching craving as alcohol, heroin, Methamphetamine, and others that shall. Cannabis politics is all about money. Just as a reminder: the private prisons will start to lose business with half the USA having some form of legalization of cannabis the numbers of "easy" prisoners will begin to fall, and when the payroll can't be met - they will close and someone's profits will decrease.

Sep 06, 2016
Cannabis was made illegal by the Congressional alcoholics. They almost all were, back in that day.

Sep 06, 2016
It has all changed. After over 45 years of hiding in the darkness, we cannabis users can be open and legal. I get it delivered to my door. It is grown near me legally and taxed. No gangs, no drug lords, no violence, no nastiness.

It is the best stuff for dream suppression and PTS.

Sep 06, 2016
45 years? You are the pothead that long? Cher that goes a long way in explaining some things I've wondered about.

Sep 06, 2016
Perhaps you should have served in a war.

Or anywhere.

Sep 06, 2016
It is the best stuff for dream suppression and PTS
@STOLEN VALOR liar-kam
if you are going to make a claim like that you should provide evidence for said claim...oh wait
i forgot who i was talking to... LMFAO

actually, no, it is not the best stuff for dream suppression and PTSD (or your PTS)

the preferred and most commonly used drug for dream suppression, especially with PTSD, is a common blood-pressure medication and alpha-blocker called Prazosin
http://www.access...3lbl.pdf

http://www.guidet...ndId=503

After over 45 years of hiding in the darkness
you should have checked the statute of limitations before making this comment

also note, this is an indicator of criminal behaviour and establishes a history of criminality, in your own words, and by your own admission free and clear of questioning
(called a spontaneous admission of guilt, BTW)


Sep 06, 2016
Oh, stop it, Rumpy. Your need to get even with me makes you into a weird coward, hiding behind a phony name on the internet. How unusual.

How classy.


Sep 06, 2016
Perhaps you should have served in a war.
Why I should do that Cher? So you can tell me I am the mass murderer and Bush fooled me? But he did not fool me even though you tell me all the time he did. Or so I would have an excuse to be a pothead? I can not do that Cher, I would lose my job quick. And I like my job, maybe that is how you lost so many jobs, eh? It also explains how you can think all the stuffs you write sounds engineer-like and really smart.

Or anywhere.
I try the pot a few times years ago. It did not do much for me that I liked. It mostly made feel tired and loggy and not quite up to my normal self. But hey, Cher, if you like it that is fine with ol Ira-Skippy. You don't drive around in your electric car while you smoke that, do you? That would not be good. Not even in a regular car would that be wise.

Yeah Skippy, it sure does explain a lot of the stuffs you write here on the physorg.

Sep 06, 2016
I do not care what you did, skippy-chere.

Yeah, I know about the "e".

Sep 06, 2016
I do not care what you did, skippy-chere..


Well, if that is the way you feel about it. But it sounds like another lie to me. You give me the distinct impression you do care, a lot and a lot times. Or maybe you don't. Either way, it is another glam-Skippy lie because it can't be both. You have a mental condition that causes you to change your mind every day, sometimes a few times a day. Or maybe that is the pot what causes that, eh?

Sep 06, 2016
After over 45 years of hiding in the darkness

also note, this is an indicator of criminal behaviour and establishes a history of criminality, in your own words, and by your own admission free and clear of questioning

(called a spontaneous admission of guilt, BTW)


@ Captain-Skippy. How you are Podna? I am good and enjoying my new book reading thing that Mrs-Ira-Skippette bought for me for my birthday.

You should take a peek-a-boo or a look-i-loo over on the Quora interweb place. glam-Skippy is sharing his expertise on pot growing using solar panes and windmills over there. For free.


Sep 06, 2016
@ Captain-Skippy. How you are Podna?
@Uncle Ira
Doing good here. popped in while i had a chance & saw your PM

look for a reply

.

.

Oh, stop it
@STOLEN VALOR liar-kam
1- you made a blatantly false claim that is easily refuted by a cursory search

2- i corrected your claim with factual information that is relevant, on topic and also verifiable

3- reported for OT irrelevant trolling rants per your request

unless you have specific information or actual valid content, don't reply cause i won't bother with you, being a narcissistic sociopathic burnt pot-head seeking attention

i will downrate and report anything that isn't topical to the thread or that doesn't contain evidence refuting my information

thanks
:-P

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