When Girl, Wash Your Face came on the market, I was a delayed reader. I’d heard the hype from friends in real life & on the internet. But until I picked it up in Target and read a page that felt like my life, I hadn’t felt a need to dive into Rachel Hollis’ bestseller. So when her follow up book, Girl, Stop Apologizing* was announced, you’d think I’d jump on the pre-order game? Of course not. Okay well technically I did end up pre-ordering it but Target put it on the shelves before the amazon shipping date. I’m not the most patient person so of course I canceled my pre-order and bought it then and there. Because you know, why wait? *please tell me someone else is singing the Hilary Duff song now too*
Nevertheless, here we are now. It’s taken me a few weeks to really dive into Girl, Stop Apologizing. But as always, I took away a ton. Before I break down my favorite bits from the book though I wanted to give a bit of a disclaim/share my thoughts. How you go into this book will probably determine what you take away from it. If you don’t think something is biblically sound or meets the values that guide your life, there’s nothing wrong with that. Take what works for you from the book and go with it. As readers and consumers, it’s up to us to determine how much or how little we take away from something. Personally I think Girl, Stop Apologizing* has a lot to offer. However, you have to be open to hearing the message in the first place.
1.To be a good woman you don’t have to be good for everyone else (pg. 14)
I’ll readily admit I struggle with this one. As a woman and a Christian, I want to serve and love others. It’s what I’m called to do. But I also know that being good for everyone else can mean looking for validation in all the wrong places. I mentioned this in my post earlier this week about How to Know When You Need to Let Go but I’ll say it again. It’s me and God. First and foremost, I line everything up there. The rest of the world may try to tell me who I should or shouldn’t be. But I don’t need to seek my validation from them.
Stop letting everyone else tell you what a good woman is or isn’t. Because the chances are that they aren’t coming to you from a place of love. You don’t have to be a good woman for everyone else. You just have to be one for yourself. Start there and the rest will fall in place.
2. What am I willing to give up in order to reach my goal? (pg. 23)
Every time I read this I find myself quoting Transformers when they say the Witwicky family motto is “No sacrifice, no victory.” Yes, I know it didn’t originate there but it’s the most recent memory for me so it’s what stuck. I think when it comes to reaching our goals it’s kind of like filling up our plates with food. We only have so much room on our plates before things start falling over the sides. If we want to add something else into the mix, we have to make room.
There’s a good chance that if you’re working towards a goal you’ll have to give something up for a bit. It might be some of your sleep to get up earlier and workout. Maybe you’re sacrificing a night or two a week at home to get your degree in night school. Whatever the case, you goal has to be important enough to you to sacrifice something however long it may take.
3. If not now, when? (pg.27)
Such a simple question but it’s one that has kept me moving over the last few days. The desire to procrastinate or to just do it later can be strong for me. But nothing changes unless you do. For me, it’s all the little stuff that adds up: putting away the laundry, cleaning out my car after a shoot, putting things up as I go instead of creating a mini pile. None of it is major but doing it then and there means my mind is less cluttered, my life is less cluttered and I can just make things happen when I need to make them happen.
Obviously, this is meant as a bigger question to things in your life that you’re putting off. Your thing could be making the time to go for a run, getting up earlier to work on starting your side business or maybe making the time to go back to school. What are you putting off in your life that would be a game changer that you’ve always wanted to do? And if you’re not doing it now, then when?
4. Some else doesn’t get to tell you who you can be (pg. 39)
Ya’ll this one hits HARD today because I woke up in a funk. It’s so so easy to look everywhere else for validation. And as much as I love my best friends, it’s my dream not theirs. I think about every friend of mine who is pursuing acting. A past life in film means I probably have more than your average amount of friends in this category but go with me. Do you know how hard it is to break into the acting scene? RIDICULOUSLY HARD. Every small step forward is just that: a small step. And they work just as hard to get to the next step.
But do you know what’s harder than pursuing acting? Telling other people you want to be an actor. Whether or not people mean to do it, the first thing they do is doubt you. Because what makes you special enough that you deserve to be an actor. So every time my friends take another odd job or cancel because they’ve got the chance to be on set, they risk losing people in their lives who just don’t get it. Except here’s the thing, NO ONE ELSE HAS THE RIGHT TO TELL THEM WHO THEY CAN AND CANNOT BE.
Try as we might, we all desperately want to fit in and be loved. But when we start letting everyone else tell us who we can be instead of letting God tell us what he wants for us, we are getting pulled under the riptides. Your dreams, your hopes, you goals have nothing to do with anyone else. So stop letting them tell you what is and isn’t right for your life.
5. “THE FACT THAT SOMEONE HAS ALREADY DONE THE THING YOU’RE DREAMING OF SHOULDN’T BE A DETERRENT; IT SHOULD BE A SIGN YOUR ON TO SOMETHING.” (PG. 59)
I am a million percent guilty of this one. Friend, I suffer from the comparison game far more than I really want to in life. And when someone with a bigger following or celebrity status launches something I was thinking about doing, of course I think well why even try now? My goal with the blog has always been to serve women & to help you live your happiest & healthiest lives. Do I have the numbers or following that Jenna Kutcher or Rachel Hollis do? Not yet. But does that mean I should give up on loving those around me and chasing my dreams? Heck no.
You were created for a reason and purpose. And if God wanted you here, then He has a plan for you. No one can take away what was promised to you and meant for you. No matter how big of a following they have or how much money is in the bank, it doesn’t matter. What is meant for you is meant for you.
6. ARE YOU HUMBLE ENOUGH TO SUCK FOR AS LONG AS IT TAKES TO GET BETTER? (PG. 61)
Let me put my big girl pants on here. I’m not very good at being crap at something. I could do a lot better job about being humble at sucking at things. Again I think this comes from a lack of patience but I rarely go into something thinking this is just the start. I can only get better from here. And reading this in Girl, Stop Apologizing was a good reminder for me.
Millennials are constantly accused of just expecting things. We think things will just happen because we want them to happen. And as much as I want don’t want to be one of those millennials, sometimes I have to check myself and get humble. If I want to hit my goals and achieve my dreams, I have to be willing to be crap at some point. I also need the humility to understand that it will take time for me to get better.
7. “THE IDEA, THE DREAM, THE GOAL IS MY OWN. THE SECOND I START LOOKING FOR OTHER PEOPLE TO VALIDATE IT, I BEGIN TO LOSE STEAM AND MOMENTUM.” (PG. 71)
If I could pick one quote from Girl, Stop Apologizing that I feel like has set the tone to my day, this is it. Remember how I talked about my friends who want to be actors? I recently had a conversation with a friend where I shared where I wanted to go and how I felt that would happen. I shared my frustrations about where things are and just generally vented about life. And because they love me they were real with me and said well maybe this isn’t what is meant to be your career but rather a hobby.
So what’s the issue here you ask? I guess it depends on how you look at it. But I realized for me I was looking for someone else to validate my dream for me. And when I didn’t hear the answer I wanted, it let in a seed of doubt. Now I can let that seed plant itself, water the doubt seed and have a forest of doubt in my mind. We’re not going to do that though. I realized that no one will ever fight for my dream like I will. I mean it’s not their dream so why would they?
I think it’s great to share your dreams and plans with others. We are meant to do life together. But when you start valuing their opinion over your own, you lose the momentum you had going. And it’s taken some serious prayer, journaling and time today to shake off that seed of doubt from my mind. You have to know without a doubt why you are going for your goals. Sometimes that means quietly working away. Just know that when you share your goals not everyone will be on board and that’s okay. It’s your dream, not theirs. Keep going.
8. STOP ASKING PERMISSION TO BE YOURSELF (PG.90)
When we don’t know where or how to step, we naturally look towards others to see where to go. The problem with this is that we aren’t simply looking for guidance but we are also looking at being told what to do. You don’t need anyone else’s permission to be who God created you to be. So stop waiting for someone to tell you it’s okay to be who you are and just do it.
9. DEFINE YOUR WHY & USE IT AS LEVERAGE (PG. 105)
There’s a reason we all talk about knowing your why. I spoke on it in my instagram post yesterday. Your why is the most powerful thing you have when it comes to reaching your goals. When you get past the excitement of starting and the honeymoon phase goes away, you’re going to need a reason to keep going. You’re going to need your why.
Girl, Stop Apologizing reminds you that when you know your why, you can use it as leverage. When I don’t want to get up and go to the gym, my why is that I know I’ll sleep better, have more energy and just feel more confident. My why for working out is strong enough that I make time for it because it matters to me. Define your why so in your moments of doubt you have a reason to keep going. Because if it’s not strong enough, you’re likely to quit the moment it gets hard.
10. WHY DO WE ACCEPT TRUTHS ABOUT OURSELVES AS WOMEN THAT WE WOULD NEVER CONSIDER AS MEN? (PG. 109)
As far as take aways go from Girl, Stop Apologizing, this one is one I think will take me some time grasp. When you believe something for so long, it’s hard to know if it’s right or wrong when it’s always just been. But that doesn’t mean we can challenge our own thoughts and consider a different way of thinking. Women are far more capable of things than we always give ourselves credit for. And as a born & bred Southern lady, sometimes I have to remind myself of this. Each of us have our different truths. However it might be time to consider that some of those truths are holding us back because we believe the lies we’ve been told about ourselves for years.
11. “INTENSITY IS NOT AS IMPORTANT AS CONSISTENCY” (PG. 132)
When I read this, I immediately think about showing up for a workout. Consistency is key. It doesn’t happen overnight. Just keep going. All of these are things we hear with fitness goals. But they are also true for the other goals in our lives.
There are some days I’m so on fire for writing and content creation that I can work non-stop for hours. Other days I feel mentally overwhelmed and the most I can do is get things onto Pinterest. Here’s the thing though: I’m still showing up. I’m not walking away from the table. I’m still playing the game. Some days I may have all the best cards while other days I might be dealt a crap hand. But it matters that I’m still trying, still going and still playing. No matter how much I’m feeling it, I’m consistently here.
Keep showing up for yourself. You might have 10 minutes to give one day and 3 hours the next. Quitting won’t get you anywhere. And while it may not happen today, tomorrow or next week, every little bit pushes you further towards your goals. Be consistent.
12. “YOU CANNOT GET TO WHERE YOU WANT TO BE IF YOU DON’T KNOW WHERE YOU ARE” (PG. 156)
This part of Girl, Stop Apologizing really hit home for me. It’s easy to make a vision board, have your dreams and think you’ll have all these great things some day. But you can’t get there without knowing where you’re starting. To go from point A to B on a map, we have to find point A. Rachel goes into a lot more detail here that I think is best left to the book. Nevertheless it’s definitely a part that helped me create an action plan in my own life. And it’s easily my favorite section of the book.
OTHER POINTS I LOVE
10 years, 10 dreams, 1 goal – I love how she breaks down the idealism and gives you a path towards making things happen.
“There are a hundred ways to learn to swim and over very easy way to drown, and that is by being unwilling to admit you’re drowning in the first place.” (120)
“The spaces you inhabit can be the platform that you build a new life on, or they can be the anchor that keeps pulling you back under the waves.” (129)
All in all, it’s safe to say I loved this book. Do I think every single page is meant for me and changed me life? Of course not. We are all in different places in our lives and have different things to learn. But so much of Girl, Stop Apologizing helped me see where I needed to start. It was something I was ready to hear. And it’s helped me set up a game plan for how to move forward.
What about you? Have you read Girl, Stop Apologizing*? I’d love to know what you think! Be sure to leave me a comment below and let me know. Until next time. Xoxo, Savvy
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