When I turned 24, I made a list of goals I wanted to accomplish in my 24th year. One of them was to read a new book each month. This sounds incredibly easy like why even make it a goal, right? But I am someone who used to reach for books all the time but now due to my busy schedule and pure laziness I find myself reaching for the remote to put on the latest Netflix show instead. It’s just easier to mindlessly scroll through your phone with Friends on in the background after a long, trying day. But it isn’t intellectually stimulating or really helps you to become a better person. It doesn’t help you connect with others or increase your vocabulary skills or learn something new. Unless you count Rachel Green’s fashion sense.
I decided that due to my hour-long commute to work, an audiobook counts as “reading” the book as long as I finish it. I asked my mom and sister and they agreed. The first book I decided to tackle was Girl Wash Your Face: Stop Believing The Lies About Who You Are So You Can Become Who You Were Meant To Be by Rachel Hollis. I chose it because it was a bestseller, getting amazing reviews, but also because it seemed a bit like a self-help book and although I buy tons of those, they are sometimes hard for me to get through. After a while, they all sound the same and reading words of encouragement for 100 pages only does so much.
So, I figured listening to it would be a lot easier than reading this type of book. Well, first off, I was wrong about the overly self-help tone of the book. Yes, the entire book is to boost your self esteem and to encourage you to be the best version of yourself. But really, it is a lot about Rachel herself and how she’s overcome some difficult times in her life. She starts each chapter with a lie that she has told herself like “You aren’t successful enough” or “You aren’t skinny” or “You’re a bad mom.” At first, I’m thinking, “This girl is a very successful blogger who has lots of money. How could she have struggles?” But as the story went on, I realized that she actually did have so many issues that she overcame from getting her adopted twins taken away after just a few days to her brother’s suicide.
Rachel lists stories, both funny and sad, that helped her realize her own worth and at the end of every chapter, she lists empowering things that helped her along the way. She talks to the reader more like a friend who needs a self esteem boost than someone she doesn’t know. And she inspires each reader to look inside of themselves and be the absolute best version of themselves because they do have that potential. Even as a single 24 year old, I could relate to her funny mom stories or her marriage problems. I actually really looked forward to getting into my car at the end of the work day because it meant I could listen to Rachel and feel inspired.
She actually encouraged me to start writing for my blog again and I have to say, it really does bring me a lot of happiness. Sometimes, it is very important to realize your self worth and not give up on yourself or your projects. This is a very honest blog so I will say that the book might not be for everyone. There are chapters where she talks a lot about God (I liked this but some people might not!) and a chapter where she talks a lot about how successful her company is. It was refreshing to see her not diminishing her value. As they say, you should never dull your sparkle for anyone else. She was proud of her accomplishments and she should yell them from the rooftops. They are amazing accomplishments! But it did feel a little out of place. So many readers come to these types of books for advice because they are lost and confused. To talk about what she’s accomplished in such extent might give the author some cred that she does know what she’s talking about but it also might make less-secure readers feel really bad about themselves and their lack of success thus far. I know this was not her intention but it was the only thing I didn’t love about the book so I thought I’d mention it.
I give the book a great rating, though, and highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys these types of books. Even if you’re just curious about this book, you really can’t go wrong. It is kind and inspiring and touching to see how much she cares about other women reaching their fullest potential. She is a kind of superhero in her own right, balancing kids and a company and a best-selling book so her advice is some that I will continue to take along with me for a long time. If you’re not sure about reading it, then listen to her audiobook. I use audible. Her voice is soothing and sincere and as someone who sometimes hates the reader of books, I was really pleasantly surprised by this one! Enjoy!