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Treatment, Self-Help & Recovery => Self-Help & Recovery => Recovery Journals => Topic started by: Reboot on September 08, 2020, 12:53:44 AM

Title: Reboot's Recovery Journal
Post by: Reboot on September 08, 2020, 12:53:44 AM
Hey Everyone,

It has been almost four months since my introductory post. I have been fully occupied by family, summer projects, and over the last two weeks, a new semester of school (taking Archaeology, Anthropology of Religion, Elementary Statistics, and General Psychology). While I have been tracking my symptoms and have read Internal Family Systems Therapy, 2nd Edition & The Body Keeps the Score in that time, I have not been devoting any real time to self-care other than a few minutes of autogenics sporadically.

In mid-July, I did find a new therapist because I felt that I needed support while I was working out how to proceed with IFS on my own. He has some limited IFS training but uses it only in a family therapy setting. While he seems to have quite a bit greater understanding of trauma than any of my previous therapists, he says that he "sees therapy through the lens of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy." I think that CBT is fatally flawed, both in general and more specifically for treating anyone with trauma in their past. I see his help as being temporary while I get a secure footing with self-guided IFS.

Today, for the first time, I searched for IFS-related guided mediations and used a short one for meeting protectors and then I journaled my experience. It was the first entry in my mental health journal since June. I am hoping that some of you may have experience in self-guided IFS and can point me toward methods that worked for you.

As an aside, I am a Christian and while I have used Buddhist or other guided meditations, I strongly prefer guided meditations that are more in the vein of being "dogma-free." I have previously seen "The Mindful Movement" as mostly generic, but I am trying to work on developing an IFS orientation right now. I am not a visual person, so I have a little bit of a handicap, I think.

Sláinte Mhath,

Title: Re: Reboot's Recovery Journal
Post by: marta1234 on September 08, 2020, 01:34:28 AM
Welcome Reboot :) Happy to see that you’ve journaled your first IFS meeting, I haven’t been able to get that far (or anywhere to be honest) with meeting protectors. Sending you support for your healing journey  :hug:
Title: Re: Reboot's Recovery Journal
Post by: sanmagic7 on September 15, 2020, 11:16:35 PM
Title: Re: Reboot's Recovery Journal
Post by: owl25 on September 16, 2020, 01:59:54 AM
Hey reboot, I agree with you on CBT - I think it has its place and can be useful, but it is limited in treating trauma. Trauma is not flawed thinking, it is something physiologically embedded in our mind and body, and if we could think our way out of trauma, I certainly would have done it long ago.

I'm very interested in IFS myself but not in a place where I can guide myself unfortunately. I am very disappointed by that, because I really do believe in it and think it can be really powerful. Snowdrop describes many of her IFS journeys in her recovery journal, which I found helpful. We had some discussion about IFS as well in my recovery journal a little while back, on things to try/what might work. Maybe the easiest way to find those entries is to search the forum for IFS using the search input box in the top right hand corner.

Your symptom summary looks really interesting, is this something you came up with on your own, or is it something your therapist suggested? That's a great way to track how you are doing and see trends over time (hopefully towards a reduction in symptoms).

Love that you are taking courses, it's great to keep on with the learning  :thumbup:
Title: Re: Reboot's Recovery Journal
Post by: Reboot on October 06, 2020, 06:42:19 PM

Thanks for the comments. The symptom record was developed from a resource available here on the downloads page (, in combination with an Excel workbook that I had been using to record symptoms using forms from David Burns' Feeling Good Handbook. In 2008, my first therapist assigned reading of the first four chapters of Burns' book. I made Excel spreadsheet versions of the Anxiety Inventory and Depression Summary forms that he presents in his book. I filled them out a few times and then stopped. In 2018, my second therapist recommended that I see a psychiatrist. I had restarted filling out the Burns' forms daily and I asked her what I should share with the psychiatrist. She recommended that I prepare a two week summary of the Burns' forms. I took it a step further and prepared a monthly summary spreadsheet that summarized each days Anxiety Inventory and Depression Summary. I have that data from early September 2018 to mid June 2019, when I moved out of my office at work (that was in response to being retraumatized by the second therapist, who was also [and still is] a NASA employee), I retired in early August 2019. When I came across the CPTSD symptom tracking form, I adapted it into my Excel workbook system. I can share it if you'd like. It does use unsigned macros written by me, so it requires that you enable unsigned macros, which can be a computer security issue if you're not careful.
Title: Re: Reboot's Recovery Journal
Post by: Reboot on October 06, 2020, 07:19:37 PM
Thanks to you also, marta1234 and sanmagic7!