I've had a few people ask about anhedonia and what I did about it. I think my anhedonia was caused by my brain still needing to heal. Anhedonia hit me hard at about 3 months and left me with feelings of meaninglessness and a lack of enthusiasm for all the things that once brought me joy. I often felt that I was simply going through the motions. In retrospect, during the time I experienced anhedonia, I still had many lingering anxiety symptoms and I think the two were related. The anxiety centers of my brain were still overactive and I still had occasional episodes of uncontrolled anxiety. I found that when my brain returned to normal, the anhedonia and anxiety both gradually went away.
The larger question, is how did I help speed this aspect of my recovery? I used the old addage "act your way into better thinking." You can't will your thoughts or feelings to change. The only way you can influence them is through your actions. As such, I deliberately forced myself to engage in life. I joined a sports league that played multiple times each week. This gave me both regular cardiovascular exercise as well as socialization. I found that when I was playing or in the locker room with the guys, I was absolutely unaware that I had anhedonia, anxiety or any other issue. Essentially, I was unaware of myself because I was intensely focused on what I was doing. I took every opportunity to go fishing with my son, despite the fact that I didn't feel like it. While I was out with him, I started to feel fleeting moments of normality. Very gradually, with an aggressive self-care regimen, started to look forward to my league games and to doing outdoors things with my son. This "looking forward to" things marked the beginning of the end of my anhedonia. This didn't happen overnight. It was the result of several deliberate changes I made related to diet, exercise, how I spent my time and how I responded to sensations of anxiety and odd thinking.
I'm not a big advocate of anti-depressants for treating marijuana induced DP/DR. I've opined about this in other posts. I think anti-depressants are for treating people with primary depression. If you go to a psychiatrist, you will always leave with a psychiatric diagnosis and a prescription for pills. It's what psychiatrists are trained to do and what insurance pays them to do. I think marijuana induced DP/DR is best treated by time, aggressive self-care, cognitive behavioral therapy, practicing mindfulness, a strong support system and a good therapist (e.g. one that uses talk therapies and not just meds). A lot of people look to "experts" to cure them and to meds for magic bullet fixes. The only person who can really impact your recovery is you, and the best way to do that is by taking deliberate, consistent action over the long-term. This is not easy. I'm in my mid 50s and this is still the hardest thing I ever had to do in my life, but I didn't do it alone. I had help from people on this forum, from a therapist, from my family and from my close friends. I made recovery my number one priority for at least a year of my life. By recovery, I don't mean thinking about recovery, I mean taking actions....doing recovery. I did this because I was miserable. I wasn't so much running toward health as much as I was running away from hell. I started running and never stopped. I still do most of the self-care practices I started five years ago and I got my life back. My world is once again familiar, comforting and occasionally a source of happiness and joy. The normal emotional textures of my life have returned completely and I no longer experience anhedonia, generalized anxiety, odd existential thoughts or DP/DR. I haven't experienced any symptoms in about 4 years. This is my first time logging on to this forum since May, but I do check back occasionally.