I would say you have to be pretty stupid not to be able to examine your own life and realize what your problems are. Now whether you are willing to get off your ass and take the necessary actions to correct them is another matter.
Caslon, I always enjoy your posts and often relate to them, but I can't believe this post. You and HndsmKansan always stand out to me (at this board) as two people who are rational and kind and offer good advice. Perhaps your gifts are due to your upbringing, but we all don't have the same experiences, sensitivity, temperament, issues or background.
People can bury their problems or acquire habits that they've used as defense mechanism without ever seeing that those bad behaviors have calcified onto their personal habits over the years. Some people are raised by parents who have poisoned their minds with limited and prejudicial thinking and tore down their self-esteem. The human psyche is full of so many possibilities and is exposed to so many variables that can shape us that I am surprised that anyone reaches adult age in any form of mental stability. I've been in therapy for years because I have a very complicated mind and I see things in a very complex way, and while I am a lot of things, I don't consider "stupid" to be one of them.
Imperator, I think you've made a great decision. I have never met anyone who couldn't benefit from having some therapy to fine tune the mind at the least, and to deal with some heavy issues at most. I am guessing that you have already looked into the possibility but if you have insurance you could probably get them to cover about 20 sessions a year with just a small co-pay from you. I pay $19 for a $150 session with my current shrink.
As for the use of therapy, I went into it thinking that being gay was my life's biggest problem among other things but as I progressed I realized that how I was dealing with it and reacting to all things was my biggest problem. A talk therapist, like I started with, helps you to say aloud thoughts that have stayed somewhat nebulous in your mind. Sometimes just hearing that thought said aloud can show you how wrong it is and sometimes your shrink will challenge you on that viewpoint and your defense (or lack thereof) can help you to identify the true source of angst or flawed thinking.
I switched over to a cognitive behavorial therapist (CBT) last year and that has been the best thing that has ever happened to me. It wouldn't have worked without a background in talk therapy first, though. a CBT challenges you to make changes in your life and gives you (as mentioned in other posts here) methods and techniques to change your approach to dealing with anger, unhappiness, frustration, etc.
I have a tendency to not fully express myself in person and largely because I have a complicated thought process that can muddle the issues. Therapy has shown me how to put a priority on those issues and then express them in an effective manner. That's just one example.
Like your gym workout, you have to make therapy work for you. You can't just show up and expect the therapist to tell you stuff to do any more than you could show up at the gym and expect a trainer to lift the weights for you. Your therapy session is your "free zone" where you can say anything without being judged, and to a person who has none of the biases of your friends and family. It sounds like to me that you've identified the right approach and that you are on the right path. I hope it works as well for you as it has for so many of us.