New book on beating anxiety, depression hits close to home

June 9, 2018 10:00:20 PM

Jan Swoope - [email protected]


Alison Buehler of Starkville once heard a speaker at a conference say, "If you know a good path somewhere, it's your obligation to share it."  


Buehler found a good path for dealing with anxiety and depression and shares part of her own journey in a just-released book coauthored with Lynn Peterson of Starkville and Buddy Wagner of Clinton.  


The goal of "Beating Anxiety & Depression for Life: Brain and Body Techniques that Work" is to bring together hard-to-find tools that can help people move through anxiety and depression to a place of peace and contentment.  


The project's genesis is deeply personal to Buehler. Her experiences with depression and subsequent medications earlier in life led her several years ago to search for reliable information on the issues.  


"It was hard to find," she said. Much of what she discovered was piecemeal. Buehler felt it could be more useful brought together in a more accessible format. 


"And there's a lot out there now that wasn't there 10 years ago," she noted. Thanks to better understanding of brain chemistry, body chemistry and the impact of lifestyle and environment, there are now more effective ways of supporting the nervous system and brain chemistry, new techniques for rewiring old thought processes. An accompanying workbook to "Beating Anxiety & Depression for Life" helps put those techniques in practice. 


Buehler is thankful more people seem to be opening up about depression. Still, too many try to battle on alone, masking inner turmoil from even loved ones and friends. The suicide of designer Kate Spade Tuesday is a somber and stark reminder that "so many people are struggling," Buehler said. 




Writing team 


To help write the book, Buehler enlisted "two of the most capable professionals" she knows. Lynn Peterson is a licensed professional counselor and national certified counselor in private practice in Starkville and Columbus. She specializes in helping clients recover from depression, anxiety, grief and trauma.  


Wagner, of Clinton, is retired from Mississippi College, but continues to teach part-time in the counseling psychology graduate program. He holds a Ph.D. in educational psychology. 


Buehler earned her doctoral degree in educational leadership. She cofounded The Homestead Education Center in Starkville, which offers workshops, retreats and online courses on personal growth, health and wellness. She has authored several other books, including "Rethinking Women's Health," "Growing the Good Life" and a series of children's books.  


Opening up about her personal experience in "Beating Anxiety & Depression" was not easy. 


"It's very vulnerable," Buehler admitted. "But I put my struggles out there because I think sharing your story helps people. ... I just keep saying, if it will help somebody, it will be worth it." 


Through June, the book and accompanying workbook are available at special pricing at They are $7.99 each in paperback; 99 cents each for Kindle. Regular pricing goes into effect in July. The book is expected to be available in July at most area book stores.

Jan Swoope is the Lifestyles Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.