I had a query today from a former client, whose adult son is now being treated for anxiety with an antidepressant medication. She wanted to know whether she should encourage her son to enter Cognitive Behavioral Therapy instead of, or in addition to, his medication. She wanted to know if I know about CBT.
I do, in fact, know about CBT: both its possibilities and its limitations. One thing I know is that CBT is the most well-accepted mainstream treatment for depression and anxiety, and that according to reports, it has an efficacy equal to medication (and without side-effect), when practiced faithfully and supported by a competent therapist.
I have, myself, used CBT as part of an array of tools for addressing multiple problems. Every group treatment project I have been a part of, whether it was for victims of violent offences, or for the offenders, has relied heavily on CBT. It is very effective, just as medication is very effective - depending on compliance.
The conventional wisdom in the professions of psychiatry and psychology, is that together, CBT and meds are very helpful. I have seen people's engagement with the world change rapidly using these methods in sync. People do, generally, feel better quickly - within a matter of days to weeks. So yes, if CBT is an option available to you because there is a government-sponsored program, or because it is the treatment your health plan will pay for; then go ahead. If you engage with the learning, follow through on the homework exercises, and are vigilant and dedicated, you will feel better.
For a while.
Neither medicine nor CBT is curative. In my experience, the effectiveness of both of these standard interventions tends to diminish over time. They are ways of managing a condition you accept as part of yourself, something you have to cope with like diabetes or short stature or a birth defect. They do not offer integral change, nor do they support the release of the problem.
The statistics seem to support that CBT is the treatment of choice, and if your treatment needs to be kick-started or supported with prescription drugs, then that choice is also is supported by statistics.
A few things to keep in mind:
- The studies are paid for by the manufacturers of the medications.
- It is in therapists' best interests for you to need long-term help.
- The studies tend to track success in the short term, in order to support the drug industry. Long term success is not as well studied.
Medication and CBT are not part of a wellness program. In order to benefit from meds, you have to see yourself as unwell, so it is impossible to become 'well' while taking them. Ironic, no?
Similarly, in order to benefit from CBT, you have to be continually vigilant; old habits of thinking keep welling back up the moment you let yourself be vulnerable. So, you have to continue seeing yourself as "needy and weak" in order to be strong. Also, ironic.
The work I am doing now IS curative; through Energy Psychology and/or bodywork it is possible to expel the old patterns entirely, leaving them only a memory. It is the most powerful and natural way I know of to heal from trauma or to permanently and rapidly release fears and phobias. The methods are easy to learn, and learning them provides you with a set of skills that enables you to deal confidently with new issues as they arise. Professionals who work in what I call "energetic interventions" are dedicated to "working themselves out of a job."
Through EI's, you tap into the wellness within, and restore flow and balance so the bunched-up knots of energetic attachments release and the residue of their influence is expelled. Can I prove it? Can I prove that this is what happens? No; I'll leave that to others while I get busy helping YOU to experience that release. Your experience of energetic interventions will definitely convince you; I don't have to prove anything.
There are other wellness products that will help. A naturopathic doctor can prescribe a range of supplements that will assist you to establish balance and flow. Exercise is pretty much free, and if you can tolerate it, it is a wonderful healer; I suspect it works in much the same way as bodywork, by loosening the residue so it can be expelled. Donna Eden offers dozens of "Energy Medicine" techniques that work very well in tandem with Energy Psychology to establish renewed balance and wellness.
What I know how to do is to help you use your body-mind to restore the flow of spirit. This is a wholistic, permanent solution that CBT and medicine cannot be compared to. Meridian-based, wholistic energetic interventions are a cure, not just a way to manage disease.