The Power of Positive Thought

by Ideal Nourishment Coach, Lily Calfee

There will be always moments when the world goes in a different direction than I thought it would. I catch myself saying “That’s not the way it is supposed to be!” Someone has thrown a wrench in my master plan! Suddenly, I have no idea what life will be like tomorrow, and the unknown is terrifying. 

This is where hope comes in. Hope means responding to these moments with love instead of fear. Feel the fear, but do not identify with it. Figure out what it is, give it a name and recognize it, and then replace it with love. A powerful time to practice this exercise is when you feel a symptom flaring up, or an attack coming on. Sit quietly, notice your symptoms, separate from the fear, and name it. Respond out of love to your body, breathe and be gentle with yourself. Let go of resentment. Forgive yourself and your body.

Our thoughts and words have immense power over our lives. If we attack ourselves emotionally, our cells simply follow orders. Every time we think to ourselves, “You are so crummy, you aren’t strong/good/beautiful enough,” our body hears us and acts accordingly. The truth is that you are good enough, and you are worthy. We are all perfect exactly as we are. Once we understand that, on a deep and cellular level, the attacks can stop. It takes practice to both improve your diet and your thoughts about yourself. Â Be patient and loving with yourself as you go through the process of healing.

Try this powerful writing exercise around fear. Write down “If I weren’t afraid, I would…” and then fill in the blank with everything you can think of. I would sing on the street, I would wear lipstick everyday, I would express my love, I would ride my bike from here to San Francisco… Keep going, and get ridiculous. You are totally safe here on this piece of paper, so be big and wild with your dreams. 

Keep your list taped inside your calendar or on the wall of your office, to remind you of what is possible when you act out of love instead of fear. Talk a lot about what your whole healthy body will feel like. Take time everyday to visualize what it will be like to be healthy and whole. Be positive, and enjoy the joy and love that you will experience when you are healthy. 

The process of naming is important when talking about your disease. Practice saying “I am living with this disease, but I am not it. I acknowledge it, but do not identify with it.” Your disease is a guest in your body, just like your spirit. The guest and the host treat each other with respect. We have come to think that if we change our outsides, our insides will feel better. In fact, it is a mutually beneficial relationship; take care of yourself inside and out, and both your body and your spirit will take care of you. 

Your spirit knows your life’s purpose. Listen to who you really are. Recognize the gifts and values that you posses. See your authentic self and embrace a path to healing. Find what you love, what makes you curious, what gets you excited, and go do it. That is what makes you the beautiful human that you are. 

Please share how this work is going for you on the Swank Foundation Message Board, and As always, please email me at for additional support.


Lily Calfee

Lily Calfee attended school at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, where she was trained in more than one hundred dietary theories and studied a variety of practical lifestyle coaching methods, and is a member of the International Association of Health Coaches. She is particularly interested in Ayurvedic Medicine, women’s health, and the connection between food and mood. Lily offers tips and insights about creating a completely personalized diet that suits your unique body, lifestyle, preferences, and goals. She lives in Boulder, Colorado.