Carley Smith, aka Fairy Gutmother®, is a nutritional therapist, certified GAPS practitioner, and registered Yoga teacher. She became interested in health and nutrition after being diagnosed with Lyme disease and using food as medicine emphasizing gut health to help heal. Smith leads numerous workshops, public speaking events, and cooking demonstrations centered around the gut health lifestyle.
Where did you grow up and what was your childhood like? Did you have any particular experiences/stories that shaped your adult life?
I grew up in Colorado where I was fortunate to live so close to the Rocky Mountains which have always been a place of healing for me. My parents instilled a strong work ethic and that maintaining an attitude of gratitude and positivity are essential in achieving your goals. I have two older sisters who are my best friends, and I am lucky to have them both to lean on and learn from. My family has always been close, I could not be where I am today if it were not for their love and support.
What is something you wish you would’ve realized earlier in your life?
Follow your heart. I believe we are born with unique talents, passions, and abilities but can often disregard the little light inside for what we think or others think we should be doing. When you follow your heart, you are in line with your soul purpose and the fears and doubts end up working themselves out.
What are bad recommendations you hear in your profession or area of expertise?
Try to mimic what others are doing to be successful. I think it is good to be inspired by others but always follow your heart, we are guided by our own intuition and natural compass and it’s completely valid to not be doing what everyone else is doing, you have to follow your own unique path.
Tell me about one of the darker periods you have experienced in life. How you came out of it and what you learned from it?
In 2014, I was diagnosed with Lyme disease and the typical antibiotics treatment felt like it was doing more harm to my body than good. It was scary going against the norm of conventional medicine and focusing more on diet and lifestyle changes, especially when gut health was not as widely discussed and prevalent. Today, I am incredibly grateful for my experience with Lyme disease because my healing journey and success story has allowed me to share what I have learned in order to help others.
What is one thing that you do that you feel has been the biggest contributor to your success so far?
Staying true to my heart and keeping the faith. I learned that you will fail way more than you will succeed but if you are always working from your heart with the best intentions, your success will be far greater than any of your failures.
What is your morning routine? Please include the time you wake up.
I love waking up early as I am most productive in the early morning. I wake up, make coffee, take my dog outside, and get to work!
What habit or behavior that you have pursued for a few years has most improved your life?
Cooking and always making sure that I have nourishing, nutrient-dense foods available. Food has been the best medicine for me and cooking has become therapeutic.
Also taking time for self-care whether that be exercising, hiking, yoga, Epsom salt baths…really prioritizing my day so that I am always taking a little time out for myself has been a large part of my healing process and helped me in maintaining optimal health.
What are your strategies for being productive and using your time most efficiently?
Writing things down in my calendar helps me organize my day and prioritize my to-do list.
Taking small breaks throughout the day to take my dog for a walk or get outside for a few minutes helps me clear my head and be more productive rather than just sitting at my desk all day.
What book(s) have influenced your life the most? Why?
The Gut & Psychology Syndrome by Natasha Campbell-McBride (GAPS) Diet book because this diet really helped me reverse my Lyme disease symptoms and empower me to study nutrition and gut health to help others. The progress in my healing from diet and lifestyle changes really confirmed the significance and importance of gut health.
The Emotion Code by Dr. Bradley Nelson has helped me handle my emotional health. There is a saying, “You store your issues in your tissues” and this book helps you to release trapped or stuck emotions in the body. It is amazing how our body stores past traumas and experiences but through energy work, you can begin to release these and truly change your life.
The Secret Language of the Body by Inna Segal is another awesome book to reference on how various health conditions relate to emotions, experiences, beliefs, and/or thoughts as well as offer guidance on how to heal and reverse these patterns.
Do you have any quotes you live by or think of often?
“All disease begins in the gut” – Hippocrates
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” – Hippocrates
“The Dalai Lama, when asked what surprised him most about humanity, he said: ‘Man. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.”
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou
“The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched, they must be felt with the heart.” – Helen Keller.