Guest Blog Post: Self-Publishing and Guinea Pigs with Ashley L. Peterson


Happiness…my experience (a little about it here and here) is that sometimes it comes easily — and sometimes it takes commitment.

Mental health nurse/blogger/author Ashley L. Peterson of Vancouver, Canada, writes personally as well as medically about mental health. She is adamant that mental health issues needn’t be stimagized. She’s self-published two books: “Psych Meds Made Simple” and “Making Sense of Psychiatric Diagnosis.” As a soon-to-be self-published author myself, she generously discussed what works for her. For Amazon, she stays flexible and experiments daily with keywords, particularly how they work with setting bids per clicks on ads at the amounts suggested by Amazon.

In her own words, she’s “a proud crazy guinea pig lady”! Here she explains why…

Ashley’s favorite photo of herself with one of her adorable little ones!

“Thank Goodness For My Thera-Piggies,” by Ashley L. Peterson

I am a crazy guinea pig lady. Crazy in more ways than one.

The most obvious, perhaps, is that I have 5 guinea pigs (3 girls and 2 boys), and I treat them like my children.

What may be less obvious is that I’m crazy in a mentally ill sense. I have depression that only partially responds to treatment, so I deal with effects of the illness every single day.

“Cute” doesn’t begin to describe Ashley’s little dear!

I take medication and do various other things to manage my illness, but my guinea pigs are an important part of my overall wellness.

I live alone, and my illness has made it difficult to be around other people, so I’m on my own a lot of the time – at least in terms of human contact. But I’m never actually alone when I’m at home because I have 5 very active, very vocal munchkins to keep me company.

Routine helps me manage each day, and the piggies thrive on routine. I have a rather odd sleep schedule, which they’ve adapted to quite happily. They know that when I wake up, they get fed, so as soon as they hear me start rustling around in bed, they start wheeking (an onomatopoeic word for their “feed me” noise). It’s a pretty good motivator to get my butt out of bed.

These two guys of Ashley could be a dictionary illustration for “beguiling.”

I prefer to practice mindfulness focused outwardly rather than inwardly, and my piggies are a perfect target for that. I can just gaze at them in fascination as my mind just shuts off.

More than anything, though, they need me. They’re very good at making their needs known, and they know that I can be counted on to meet them, no matter how lousy I’m feeling. Because of that, I mean the world to them. It’s definitely mutual.

How do you relieve your stress?

39 thoughts on “Guest Blog Post: Self-Publishing and Guinea Pigs with Ashley L. Peterson

  1. Thank you for sharing!.. how do I deal with stress?..by not getting stressful… how do I avoid stress?.. by living each day as it comes and following my heart!.. 🙂

    “Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still possible for you to do…” Pope John XXIII

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am a firm believer that most mental/emotional problems are rooted in living “unnaturally”. The pace we keep, expectations of society at large and corporate demands all come together to make us feel spread very thin. Anything a person does to simplify their life and feel like there more “life in their day” can only help.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s lovely to see Ashley feature on your blog, and I love her darling guinea pigs!  ♥ They do say about pets improving mental wellbeing, and I think they’re such a comfort when alone or without much human contact. You can usually get more sense out of animals than humans a lot of the time too! 😉
    Caz xx

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It’s true how pets have a way of making you happy. Because they are happy to be around you. They only focus on what’s now. Their priorities are sleep, eat, go to the bathroom, play and being around their hoomans.

    Liked by 1 person

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