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I’m sure many of you reading this know who Rachel Hollis‘ is. If you don’t, that’s cool. To update you, she’s the author of the immensely best selling book from 2018, Girl, Wash Your Face. And now she’s at it again with a new book debuting, March 12th entitled: Girl, Stop Apologizing.
I’ll get to my review, but first, a little background….
To give you a little background on my “experience” with Rachel Hollis…..I received Girl, Wash Your Face (GWYF) in my Sparkle Hustle Grow subscription box last year and read about 10 pages before putting it down. I just didn’t get it. I had never heard of Rachel Hollis and I didn’t quite understand why someone with a food blog (or whatever kind of blog she had) was writing a personal development book. I just had zero context for her book. There it sat on my bookshelf collecting dust. Several months later, I was still hearing things about GWYF and it seemed that she was becoming a “phenomenon”.
Then, I started seeing advertisements for Hollis’ Made for More documentary coming to theaters last August (and debuting on Amazon February 6th!). I figured it would be a fun night out with some of my local female entrepreneurs so we made it a girls’ night out. Well, Made for More kind of changed things for me on the Rachel Hollis’ front. I really needed to hear her message from that documentary at that time.
Her whole “you were meant to do more and be more” mantra was exactly what I needed someone to tell me in that moment of my life. So I jumped on the Rachel Hollis bandwagon.
And I figured if I liked the message she was sending through her documentary, I might feel better about trying her book again. I devoured GWYF and took much of what she said to heart. There were chapters that I really just skimmed through. And some of it was a little “preachy” to me. But overall, her message was really good.
During the time I was reading GWYF and afterward, I was working with my own business coach and participating in masterminds with inspiring female business owners. And after a bit of time and processing, I started to come to a conclusion. Though Rachel really spoke to me in those few moments in August, I started to see her less as an icon and more as another amazing business woman who was rocking it. But it all started to feel a little overhyped to me. Not that I didn’t believe that she believed in what she was saying. I do think she does. But I also think she’s a very savvy business woman. She’s clearly figured out her niche and her ideal client. And she is speaking directly to ‘that’ person.
I was excited when I came across the opportunity to be part of the book launch team for Girl Stop Apologizing. First of all, can we just talk about how cool it is that a “book launch team” is a thing now in the social media world?? Can I please be on all the book launch teams? Maybe that’s what I should do. Just be a professional book launch team member. LOL! Sorry, I digress…..
Anyhoo, as I was saying….I was excited to see what Rachel had to say next. What her next move was for her business. What her client needed next, even if I knew maybe I wasn’t exactly the person she was speaking to. I received my advanced reader copy of Girl Stop Apologizing less than a week ago, started it right away and just finished the book.
Girl Stop Apologizing debuts
Whereas Girl, Wash Your Face was a book that could appeal to any woman reading it, I feel Girl Stop Apologizing is more of a business development type book.
Yes, this book talks overall about what it takes to achieve a goal. And yes, what she says can be applied to any goal you have (whether it’s business related, health-related or home-related). But this second book more specifically talks about how Rachel built her business/empire. She also echoes a few things from her first book, just in more detail. I think GWYF is more for the everywoman, GSA is more for the goal-getter, business woman.
If you’ve read many business development/personal development type books, you will find themes in Girl Stop Apologizing that you have heard before such as, the idea that the habit cycle contains a cue, an action and a reward. In fact, the entire chapter ‘Build Foundations of Success’ can be found in many other sources: “Establish a morning routine”…..author Hal Elrod has a whole series on this. “Get your personal space in order”…Hi, Marie Kondo. “Build a community”. Yep, check. Brenda Ster and many other amazing business coaches also preach that one, sister.
I think Rachel is much more inspiring with her general message from GWYF and should stick to preaching that. She’s a self-professed lover of books and reading, I just wish she would attribute what she’s saying in Girl Stop Apologizing to the authors she’s read. Nowhere does she say she came up with these things completely on her own. She simply says “This is what I do.” But, because of her reputation and following, I think these general personal development ideas will be misconstrued as originating from her. (It’s already happening. Read more about it here.) I’m pretty sure she isn’t doing it on purpose or with malice. I don’t think she is sitting there thinking to herself, “This is a great idea! I’m going to sell this as mine.” I think she simply incorporates the info she learns in her reading into her routine/life. Because let’s be honest, there’s good stuff out there that provides results if you put it into practice (check out my suggested list of books at the end of this post!). Rachel reads something, she puts it into practice, it works for her, she tells people about it, and the idea skyrockets. She’s the epitome of an influencer. Not a personal/business development genius.
So, I guess overall, what I’m trying to say is Rachel tells it like it is in her trademark Rachel way. If you’re all into that, and sooo many are, you will like this book.
If you haven’t done a ton of business/personal development reading before, and you’re looking for a place to start, this is a GREAT overview to business mindset.
If you’ve been in small business for a bit and are pretty well-read in that world, Girl Stop Apologizing will be fairly elementary for you and might not be as inspiring as you may have hoped.
Hollis gets points for transparency!
That’s pretty much what she preaches anyway, right? Transparency. And for good or bad, I love love love that she is transparent. I love that she talks about getting a boob job, and how she hates volunteering in her kids’ classrooms. Because that makes her real. I may not agree with the idea that she has an entire chapter on how looking good instills confidence. I think she actually focuses too much on body image in both of her books. But it’s something she struggles with, and she outright says that she knows people will not agree with her on the topic. It seems trite to think that your looks can help instill confidence. But I’m more of a ‘your brain and mindset build confidence’ kind of person. I’m not going to judge her for it. We’re just two different people.
A Business Case Study
If you look at Rachel Hollis from the point of view of a case study. She’s pretty fascinating and what she has achieved is incredible.
Here’s the thing, despite all these nit picky little things about her book(s), what you can and should take away from Rachel Hollis is that she is one badass woman who doesn’t take no for an answer, she works her ass off and has built something for her to be proud of. She has figured out who her ideal client is and she’s writing to her. She is selling books, journals, and personal development conferences to her. She has a message that many, many women need to hear. And she writes in a way that is very welcoming to anyone. Anyone of any background can pick up her book/s and easily digest what she is saying. And THAT is why she’s really good at what she does! She’s found her audience and she speaks to them.
As women building small businesses, we can all hope to figure out our ideal client as well as Hollis has and build an empire that overtakes hers. 😉
Ha! She talks about big audacious goals….I want to see someone have a goal to grow their business bigger than Rachel Hollis’. I think that’s actually the biggest compliment any woman could give her because that’s exactly what she preaches. Go after that gigantic scary goal! Because she has absolutely, without a doubt, proven that you CAN do it with a sh*t ton of hard work, smarts, and an amazing team working with you!
Despite being polarizing, Hollis sure can build a business!
If you go back and look at the reviews of GWYF, you’re going to find those that LOVED it, gave it five stars, are inspired, and have told all their friends about it. And then you’re going to find the naysayers. Those who think Rachel is cliche, the book isn’t as great as they expected, etc. Well, I absolutely can see WHY people feel both ways and why her book is polarizing in that regard. The 5 star reviews….those are her people. Those are her ideal client. She speaks to them and they need to hear what she has to say. Those 1 star reviewers….they are not her ideal client. She is not for them. They need to go read Brene Brown or Elizabeth Gilbert or another author that gives them more what they are looking for.
Take Rachel at face value. Don’t put her on a pedestal, because there are other people who are doing and saying the same things she does (or they said the words before she reiterated them here in Girl Stop Apologizing). But, if she speaks to you and you enjoy her, by all means, indulge!
I’m sure she’ll have more to say in the future. She’s going to ride this wave as long as she can! After all, she has a plan! With a road map, guideposts and mile markers! I suspect she’s nowhere near the end of the road on her map. If she’s not for you, move on. No reason to cut her down. The girl can build. That’s all there is to it!
Me, I’ll continue to watch her from the side of her road and see where she takes this empire of hers, because like I said, she’s an incredible case study for building a successful business.
(I received Girl Stop Apologizing as an advanced reader copy by being a part of the #GSALaunchTeam. I have a feeling I won’t be asked back for the next book launch. LOL! But if Rachel ever sees this, maybe she’ll be proud that I was transparent enough with my thoughts and I don’t care about other people’s opinions to worry about it. 😉 )
If you liked Rachel’s book and would like to continue your reading in business and personal development, check these out!