“I feel the need to confess… I shave my toes.”
“None of this would be such an epic admission for me to make except that I once made fun of a girl in freshman year English class for doing this exact thing. Blargh! I feel like such a jerk even now, a hundred and fifty years later.”
And that, my readers, was what I happened to open to when I plucked ‘Girl, Wash Your Face’ from the shelf of my local book store. With that I promptly closed the cover and the debut non-fiction book from author Rachel Hollis had already made its way into my shopping basket.
To be fair, I had heard of this book before, but I’d routinely dismissed it. However, with a single ‘in the flesh’ preview, I was sold. If someone can be this real and honest about their shortcomings, then this is an author whose work I want to read! And just secretly, maybe it’s because I shave my toes too – and I’ve been a less than supportive jerk in the past as well.
You won’t find any real spoilers here, but when I sit down to read a “shelf-help” book such as Girl, Wash Your Face, I’m often thinking: what would my clients get out of reading this book? Would this book have helped me earlier in my journey? Does it just talk about problems, or does it offer usable and practical advice that could actually make a difference to women’s lives?
When I first started reading Girl, Wash Your Face, I thought not.
It seemed as though Hollis was writing this book as some sort of confessional therapy – getting all her shames out there in the world in order to heal herself once and for all. And Hollis does openly recommend therapy for all women, stating that she would pay for every woman to have therapy if she had Beyoncé’s money. One big tick right there.
As I continued to read, I found such a connection with Hollis’ stories. I went from knowing nothing about her to feeling like we were kindred sisters who grew up in completely different families and on different sides of the world, but experiencing the same feelings. We even shared unexplained vertigo.
Then when she mentioned Drew Barrymore – oh my – I grew up with Drew Barrymore! Drew and I are a similar age and experienced E.T. together as children – her starring in it and me watching it. And then I fell in love with Drew all over again over Riding in Cars With Boys…. And every movie that followed. Loved it! Love her! And as for Hollis, any woman who likes Drew Barrymore is worth reading in my book.
Hollis is a wonderful, engaging story-teller and her stories do smoothly segue into advice and “what worked for me” points. While you won’t find much advice here that you can’t find elsewhere, you may learn the advice on a different level. Listening to story-telling is always a wonderful method to learn new concepts. And this is real, practical, life advice in here.
Some of the chapters subjects didn’t appeal to me but I stopped myself from skim-reading and still mostly enjoyed the stories. I did wish at one time though that my young pregnant friend not read this book before giving birth to her first baby. Some experiences I would like to see women experience in their own way without being pre-armed by the experiences from someone influential such as Hollis.
Hollis does indeed get very real in this book and doesn’t hold much back. The advice she has laid out for women is generally solid. I found myself on many occasions thinking my daughter (currently 25 years old) must read this book! And throughout the book I thought of at least three other people who this book was a must read for.
Whether you are brand new to the mindset movement, or two feet in, you can find gold in these pages!
Reading Hollis’ experiences and reading her words of wisdom around some topics helped me to see some advice I’ve already read and learnt, in a new light. I feel like reading this book has rekindled the excitement of forming and continuing new practices on my journey of life to becoming a much more accomplished person.
The same good advice you’ve already heard or learnt, should come in different forms from different people. What resonates with one person won’t necessarily resonate with another.
I remember Louise Hay (motivational speaker and author and publisher of self-help books) mentioning this very same thing – that what she was saying wasn’t new and that there were other people out there saying the exact same thing as she was, but perhaps in a different way that appealed to a different audience. I feel Hay brought ‘mindset’ to the masses and there’s no doubt that Rachel Hollis is now one of those followers bringing the goods to help today’s woman become comfortable within herself, and to not only strive for more, but how to achieve more.
I highly recommend ‘Girl, Wash Your Face’ for the woman who has a dream to be something or someone more than who she currently is. And yes, I would recommend this book for my clients too – because the more exposure you get to this wisdom and these new ways of thinking, the more it is likely you will take it in and act on it.
Book Review: Girl, Wash Your Face, Rachel Hollis, Nelson Books 2018