I could do this in Indesign CS6, but am not able to with Indesign CC.
Here's the issue: Previously in CS6 I could copy and paste a body of text and preserve the formatting /styles of certain text. For instance, all text was in Arial but some of it was Arial bold or in italics. Then if I needed to change the font, I could select entire text box and choose a new font, let's say Helvetica. The text would all change to Helvetica, but the italics would stay italic and the bold would stay bold (as long as the new font family supported the same styles).
Now with CC, when I do the same action as above it changes everything to the same style -- so I loose all styles/formatting -- everything becomes Helvetica regular. It is not very efficient to go back through paragraphs and reapply styles to selected text.
Any ideas how to do this with latest Indesign CC?
It sounds as if you need to use paragraph and character styles a little more effectively. For example, if you have a "body" paragraph style that uses the font Arial, then you should have an associated character style "body italic". You can then get the effect you describe by limiting the character style definition to just "italic" (ie don't specify a font family). Then, when you change your body paragraph style to a different font (providing, as you say, that the font supports the same style), your character style(s) will be retained as the new font is applied to the paragraph.
Sounds like it's time for me to learn the proper way to do it, as you described. Thanks for your help!