How To Change Your Mind: 5 Quick Things To Know Before You Watch The New Netflix Docuseries

michael pollan hosting how to change your mind on netflix
(Image credit: Netflix)

It’s no secret that streamers do a great job of presenting viewers with intriguing new content on a very regular basis, and the granddaddy of them all, Netflix, certainly leads the way on that front. We’ve already seen a number of shows hit the 2022 Netflix TV schedule, and now the available new shows include the Netflix limited series, How To Change Your Mind. If you’ve heard about the show but need more information before you use your Netflix subscription to check it out, you’ve come to the right place!

How To Change Your Mind Is About Psychedelic Drugs

While the title of the new series might be a bit confusing for those looking for answers about what the show is about, Netflix is very clear on the premise. How To Change Your Mind is focused on the growing field of research that studies the effects of psychedelic drugs, specifically for use in helping those with mental health issues and addiction finally get relief from the problems that make living a well-balanced life difficult for them. 

The show looks at four mind-altering substances (LSD, psilocybin, MDMA, and mescaline), the history of their use and how they might “heal and change minds as well as culture.”

How To Change Your Mind Is Based On The Book Of The Same Name

While there is a lot of information in the show that’s been explored for the Netflix documentary series, How To Change Your Mind is based on the 2018 best-selling book of the same name, which has the subtitle What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence.

The Book’s Author, An Oscar Winning Filmmaker, And Others Are Involved With Developing The Series

Luckily, Netflix announced that those who tune in to How To Change Your Mind will be shepherded through this sometimes controversial topic by the award-winning author of the book, Michael Pollan, who’s also written seven other books and is hosting the series. Oscar winning filmmaker Alex Gibney (who was awarded the Best Documentary Feature prize for 2007’s Taxi to the Dark Side) acted as executive producer, with Academy Award nominated and Emmy winning filmmaker Lucy Walker directing along with Emmy-nominated filmmaker, Alison Ellwood.

There Are Four Episodes In The Limited Series

As How To Change Your Mind is based on a non-fiction book, Netflix understandably opted for a limited series that includes four episodes which run between 51 and 55 minutes each. In addition, each of the four episodes focuses on one psychedelic drug: Episode 1 is LSD, Episode 2 is psilocybin, Episode 3 is MDMA, and Episode 4 is mescaline.

Host Michael Pollan Believes This Work Is Important For ‘Re-creation’

As mentioned above, there are a lot of controversies surrounding the attempted use of illegal drugs, all of which can have very dangerous effects on those who use them, to treat any illnesses, particularly because they can lead to abuse of the drug in question. But, Michael Pollan is a big believer in the importance of studying each of these drugs to see when and how practical applications for medical use can apply, to the point that he co-founded the UC Berkeley Center for the Science of Psychedelics in 2020. About using the drugs, Pollan recently told Rolling Stone:

It’s for spiritual experience. It’s for self-exploration. It’s for setting priorities. It’s for breaking habits. There are all these other ways people are using them. And we have this word ‘recreation’ that we think is negative, but we should go back and think — what is that? Well, re-creation is a very positive thing and people are using them to re-create themselves. And it seems to me that’s as legitimate as any other use.

How To Change Your Mind is currently available to watch on Netflix, and is sure to open many people’s eyes to this field of research.

Stream How To Change Your Mind on Netflix.

Adrienne Jones
Senior Content Creator

Covering The Witcher, Outlander, Virgin River, Sweet Magnolias and a slew of other streaming shows, Adrienne Jones is a Senior Content Producer at CinemaBlend, and started in the fall of 2015. In addition to writing and editing stories on a variety of different topics, she also spends her work days trying to find new ways to write about the many romantic entanglements that fictional characters find themselves in on TV shows. She graduated from Mizzou with a degree in Photojournalism.