Wow-- it's almost like you read my mind. I've been wondering about people's experiences with cbt over a longer haul. It's so good to hear that you're feeling great and that cbt has been effective.
It makes sense to me conceptually as an approach, whether alone or in conjunction with biological therapies. And it's helped me a little, although I'll admit I've done it on and off rather than consistently. I use David Burns' "Feeling Good" (now dogeared and losing its pages) as a kind of talisman: it's always under my bed, and sometimes I'll just read if I'm not doing the actual exercises, which I often do. Recently, even the exercises weren't enough. I had dredged up some big stuff for me, some gory self-defeating beliefs, and have a history of chemical depression as well. (I'm not a fan of Burns' studied dismissal of medications in "When Panic Attacks," although I can understand his rhetorical intentions, and the rest of the book has been useful to me.)
Another reason I've felt some curiosity or incompleteness-- but not doubt-- about cbt is that I spend much of the time wondering what other people's experiences with it have been along the way. Part of my personality, apparently, is wanting to investigate what it's like in "real life"-- what it feels like for other people, what the intermediate steps are like while lived. Burns' books focus on method and then offer a few sentences about the result, which is often rapid recovery. Naturally-- he writes as a therapist, not as a client. The books are devoted to instruction; they're not memoirs detailing plot twists and turns along the way. This is how it should be for those books. But, as I have not recovered rapidly (although I've found the methods good for self-soothing in the moment), and as I'm the patient rather than the analyst, I want stories from people who have worked with cbt. Reversing decades of negative thinking takes....well, a long time. I'm yearning for encouragement for that time in between.
So thank you for the rec re: the sam obitz book. I'd never heard of that. But I'll now be looking it up!
How did you start working with cbt? What do you think kicked in about 6 months ago?