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What They Taught Me: Extraordinary Life Lessons from Ordinary Women

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Do you feel stretched thin and burned out? Do you wonder how everyone else always seems to be five steps ahead? As an entrepreneur, Kelsey Chapman understands the doubts that hold us back—the moments we wonder, Am I capable? Am I qualified? Am I enough? She also knows what it’s like when God brings the right people to guide us through difficult seasons.   In What They Tau Do you feel stretched thin and burned out? Do you wonder how everyone else always seems to be five steps ahead? As an entrepreneur, Kelsey Chapman understands the doubts that hold us back—the moments we wonder, Am I capable? Am I qualified? Am I enough? She also knows what it’s like when God brings the right people to guide us through difficult seasons.   In What They Taught Me, Kelsey weaves the stories of nine regular women who stepped into her life at the exact right moment. Each woman gave Kelsey a model and example that informed and inspired her during the most critical times of her life personally and professionally. Combining personal stories with practical advice, Kelsey gives you the tools to grow your mindset and core beliefs about yourself by linking arms with other women who’ve been there, done that live out your purpose when you let go of comparison and competition and embrace a community of encouragement where women support women pass on the wisdom you’ve gained from your own experiences as you take the time to pour your insight into the people God places in your life Join Kelsey in reinventing the concept of mentorship and learn to cultivate meaningful relationships by investing in the lives of other women.


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Do you feel stretched thin and burned out? Do you wonder how everyone else always seems to be five steps ahead? As an entrepreneur, Kelsey Chapman understands the doubts that hold us back—the moments we wonder, Am I capable? Am I qualified? Am I enough? She also knows what it’s like when God brings the right people to guide us through difficult seasons.   In What They Tau Do you feel stretched thin and burned out? Do you wonder how everyone else always seems to be five steps ahead? As an entrepreneur, Kelsey Chapman understands the doubts that hold us back—the moments we wonder, Am I capable? Am I qualified? Am I enough? She also knows what it’s like when God brings the right people to guide us through difficult seasons.   In What They Taught Me, Kelsey weaves the stories of nine regular women who stepped into her life at the exact right moment. Each woman gave Kelsey a model and example that informed and inspired her during the most critical times of her life personally and professionally. Combining personal stories with practical advice, Kelsey gives you the tools to grow your mindset and core beliefs about yourself by linking arms with other women who’ve been there, done that live out your purpose when you let go of comparison and competition and embrace a community of encouragement where women support women pass on the wisdom you’ve gained from your own experiences as you take the time to pour your insight into the people God places in your life Join Kelsey in reinventing the concept of mentorship and learn to cultivate meaningful relationships by investing in the lives of other women.

30 review for What They Taught Me: Extraordinary Life Lessons from Ordinary Women

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jenna Justine

    Kelsey is absolutely incredible - and her book is nothing short ❤️❤️

  2. 5 out of 5

    Mia

    ‘What They Taught Me’ is a memoir conveying the writer’s life through the lens of the women that helped her along the way. This begins from childhood to the present, in which she utilises career-based mentors rather than life-defining ones. This wasn’t particularly marked in terms of either a memoir or self-help book, but was an easy and personable read. Each chapter had a clear theme that was maintained throughout, enabling it to be well understood. Though relatively interesting, it didn’t amaz ‘What They Taught Me’ is a memoir conveying the writer’s life through the lens of the women that helped her along the way. This begins from childhood to the present, in which she utilises career-based mentors rather than life-defining ones. This wasn’t particularly marked in terms of either a memoir or self-help book, but was an easy and personable read. Each chapter had a clear theme that was maintained throughout, enabling it to be well understood. Though relatively interesting, it didn’t amaze or inspire me enough to rate it any higher. The majority of the book focused on life defining events for the writer, which made it more memoir than advice (not necessarily a bad thing). The ‘discussion points’, and advice at the end of each chapter are focused around becoming a mentor in your own capacity, but I wouldn’t say this is entirely applicable; mentoring is a rigorous process and not for everyone, particulaly when inexperienced themselves. Though I disagree with her promotion of mentorship for everyone, I enjoyed reading her point that reaching out and supporting is important and can teach many lessons both ways. Thus in that aspect, I probably learned more from reading about and watching the women in her life than the discussion points she intended to convey. A variety of mentors were included through the book: a mother like figure, a coming of age role model, a mentor to aid her Biblically, a marriage-based mentor, professional therapists and career aid. Though in some ways this shows a wide variety, thus conveying the purpose of the book, I found the meaning to get slightly convoluted by the end. The career focus by the end of the book felt less focused on mentorship and more on her own personal journey with owning a business, which made it less interesting than the beginning. Overall, the cover was gorgeous, and the writing style fluent and easy to understand. However, there were aspects that I didn’t necessarily agree with, and it became less focused on personal mentorship as it went on which I didn’t love. Perhaps I’m not in the stage of life to appreciate this book fully and as such would still invite people to give it a read and make their own judgment! What They Taught Me is a moderate read, but nothing remarkable enough to blow me away.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Kidwell

    What They Taught Me Recognizing the Mentors Who Will Take You from Dream to Done by Kelsey Chapman Harvest House Publishers Christian | Self-Help Pub Date 09 Feb 2021 I am reviewing a copy of What they Taught Me through Harvest House Publishers and Netgalley: Kelsey Graham Isaiah entrepreneur and podcast host who thanks God for the wonderful mentors who stepped into her life to give her the wisdom, inspiration, and support she needed in each season. In What They Taught Me, she’ll show you how to fin What They Taught Me Recognizing the Mentors Who Will Take You from Dream to Done by Kelsey Chapman Harvest House Publishers Christian | Self-Help Pub Date 09 Feb 2021 I am reviewing a copy of What they Taught Me through Harvest House Publishers and Netgalley: Kelsey Graham Isaiah entrepreneur and podcast host who thanks God for the wonderful mentors who stepped into her life to give her the wisdom, inspiration, and support she needed in each season. In What They Taught Me, she’ll show you how to find a mentor who will help you reach your dreams—and how you can become that person for someone else. In What they Taught Me reminds us that true mentors lean in, even when it hurts, even when things get awkward. They don’t back away from our pain, they lean in helping us through it. We are reminded too that mentors are in for the long game. Kelsey Chapman points out that risk comes with any type of relationship, but when you allow someone to speak into your life, it’s especially important to be mindful of the risk you’re taking. You’re allowing someone to not only listen to you but to offer you wisdom and input, and a high level of discernment is necessary. Some mentors will not be the best fit for you. That’s why trial and error is part of the quest for mentors. Another words not everyone is meant to be our mentor. Mentors need to be able to get comfortable with pain. In What they Taught Me Kelsey Chapman passes the expert guidance that enriched her perspective, helped her live out her passions, and kept her hopeful and optimistic about the process. This book can help you identify your goals along with the steps needed to achieve thempartner with women who have already walked the road before youencourage others by sharing the insights you’ve gained from your own experience God uses an entire community to shape you into the person He made you to be. What they Taught Me is a celebration of mentorship between women, and the impact these mentors can have in our lives. I give What they Taught Me five out of five stars! Happy Reading!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Rene' Bancroft

    Kelsey Chapman has an easy-going style of writing that makes the reader eager to turn the page. The humor that is woven throughout this book, tied in with expressing hard truths, makes for an incredibly enjoyable reading experience. The importance of mentors in our lives is underrated and I'm hoping that everyone who reads her book will either realize their need for a mentor, to become a mentor or both! The reflection questions at the end of each chapter are thoughtful and will most definitely b Kelsey Chapman has an easy-going style of writing that makes the reader eager to turn the page. The humor that is woven throughout this book, tied in with expressing hard truths, makes for an incredibly enjoyable reading experience. The importance of mentors in our lives is underrated and I'm hoping that everyone who reads her book will either realize their need for a mentor, to become a mentor or both! The reflection questions at the end of each chapter are thoughtful and will most definitely bring about great introspection as well as a conversation if reading this book in a group. One of my favorite quotes from the book is still from the Introduction: “…at the very core of my being is the belief that women are unstoppable when we support one another. I hope you’ll learn that it’s okay to ask for help. Going at it alone is not a badge of honor – it’s really a badge of stubbornness.” (pg. 12). We all need each other! You will be a very happy reader when you get your hands on a copy of this new book by Kelsey!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Theodene

    Little did I know how much this book would feel like it was written just for me. When did the author get a peek into my life? This is so on point that I couldn’t put it down! Now I need to go back to go through the questions! Oh! Let me circle back here; What They Taught Me by Kelsey Chapman is about how several women helped the author become the person she is today. It’s about the lessons she’s learned from these individuals. It’s about how she was brought up as part of a village! Mentoring is a Little did I know how much this book would feel like it was written just for me. When did the author get a peek into my life? This is so on point that I couldn’t put it down! Now I need to go back to go through the questions! Oh! Let me circle back here; What They Taught Me by Kelsey Chapman is about how several women helped the author become the person she is today. It’s about the lessons she’s learned from these individuals. It’s about how she was brought up as part of a village! Mentoring is a huge aspect of this book. How to choose your mentor, working with your mentor, even how to be a mentor, and everything in between. I especially enjoy knowing that there can be a different mentor for different parts of life, in fact there should be! A digital ARC of What They Taught Me by Kelsey Chapman was provided by Harvest House via NetGalley. While a review is not required, I choose to write a review because I know it can help both the author and readers. This book is eye-opening and absolutely helpful for my personal growth as well!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Lauren Windle

    This is an easy to read guide on mentoring written through the mentor/mentee experiences of the author. While it is Christian, it is not overly spiritual or massively heavy on this theme so could be relevant to someone Christian-adjacent also. I enjoyed the straight forward structure and clear message of the book. I think it would be the ideal read for a young woman looking to develop herself as a mentor but also wanting to understand what she should be looking for in a mentor for herself. There This is an easy to read guide on mentoring written through the mentor/mentee experiences of the author. While it is Christian, it is not overly spiritual or massively heavy on this theme so could be relevant to someone Christian-adjacent also. I enjoyed the straight forward structure and clear message of the book. I think it would be the ideal read for a young woman looking to develop herself as a mentor but also wanting to understand what she should be looking for in a mentor for herself. There is one particularly practical suggestion where the author recommends turning "What if" questions into "Even if" statements which I thought was really helpful. Overall I was encouraged by reading it. It reminded me to be grateful for all of the incredible people who have encouraged me in my professional/spiritual/relationship journeys. Thank you to NetGalley and Harvest House publishers for the complimentary copy of What They Taught Me in exchange for this honest review..

  7. 4 out of 5

    Kelsey Smith

    I enjoyed reading this book and finished it in one afternoon. Kelsey is very relatable in the stories she shares and it covers both her personal and professional life. However I was hoping for more practical steps to finding a mentor. It seems as though she naturally found all of hers in her life already, minus the business coach/mentor she hired. I work with three other people, am not near family, and have not been attending church due to the current circumstances with the virus. So I was hopin I enjoyed reading this book and finished it in one afternoon. Kelsey is very relatable in the stories she shares and it covers both her personal and professional life. However I was hoping for more practical steps to finding a mentor. It seems as though she naturally found all of hers in her life already, minus the business coach/mentor she hired. I work with three other people, am not near family, and have not been attending church due to the current circumstances with the virus. So I was hoping for more step by step actions to take to finding a mentor. Overall though, I enjoyed this book and think it is something every woman needs to read, no matter your age or stage of life. Now I’m pumped up to find a mentor and find someone I can be a mentor for!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Ann

    Ordinarily I am not a fan of memoirs, especially of people I am unfamiliar with. This book, "What They Taught Me", however, is a pleasant exception to my rule. I do not know of the author, although her book on mentors was a very thorough exploration of mentors and mentees, mixed with self-reflection and examples of servitude. I was surprised by how interesting her life's mentors were and found myself comparing those along my path with those along Chapman's path. Additionally, I gave thought to w Ordinarily I am not a fan of memoirs, especially of people I am unfamiliar with. This book, "What They Taught Me", however, is a pleasant exception to my rule. I do not know of the author, although her book on mentors was a very thorough exploration of mentors and mentees, mixed with self-reflection and examples of servitude. I was surprised by how interesting her life's mentors were and found myself comparing those along my path with those along Chapman's path. Additionally, I gave thought to whom I could mentor and if I had anything to offer. Thanks to the questions at the end of each chapter, I will feel free to mentor others if needed.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Grace Neumann

    I usually don't read or review non-fiction unless I LOVED it, and I usually don't read memoirs unless I know of or am familiar with the person writing them. This was an exception, as I saw the title and description on Netgalley and was intrigued! It was not my favorite memoir ever, nor was it my favorite advice book. However, I did enjoy learning about the different people and mentors the author had come across in life, and the lessons she had learned from them. Being at the stage of life I'm in, I usually don't read or review non-fiction unless I LOVED it, and I usually don't read memoirs unless I know of or am familiar with the person writing them. This was an exception, as I saw the title and description on Netgalley and was intrigued! It was not my favorite memoir ever, nor was it my favorite advice book. However, I did enjoy learning about the different people and mentors the author had come across in life, and the lessons she had learned from them. Being at the stage of life I'm in, mentorship is something I think about often. Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with an e-ARC!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Taylor Hester

    The author uses her "come as you are" style for speak about being a mentee and how to mentor others. It feels very much like the reader is sitting across the table from Kelsey while sharing a cup of coffee. It is an easy book to read and dives deep into some self-reflection questions that I would not consider as easy. 'What They Taught Me' is designed to help the reader grow! I feel that you learn just as much about yourself in this book as you do about learning to serve others. I recommend this The author uses her "come as you are" style for speak about being a mentee and how to mentor others. It feels very much like the reader is sitting across the table from Kelsey while sharing a cup of coffee. It is an easy book to read and dives deep into some self-reflection questions that I would not consider as easy. 'What They Taught Me' is designed to help the reader grow! I feel that you learn just as much about yourself in this book as you do about learning to serve others. I recommend this book!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Taliah Kendrick

    In less than 200 pages, Kelsey Chapman highlights 10 different women who made an impact on her for a lifetime. In each chapter, you get an inside look at the dynamics of their relationship and she highlights what they taught her. If you’ve been intimidated by mentor/mentee relationships, then you will walk away feeling relieved because she makes it simple and practical! You will be reminded that some relationships with mentors may be formal, while others may be informal. (And if your relationshi In less than 200 pages, Kelsey Chapman highlights 10 different women who made an impact on her for a lifetime. In each chapter, you get an inside look at the dynamics of their relationship and she highlights what they taught her. If you’ve been intimidated by mentor/mentee relationships, then you will walk away feeling relieved because she makes it simple and practical! You will be reminded that some relationships with mentors may be formal, while others may be informal. (And if your relationship with a mentor is informal, you can learn a lot from them too! 😉) Essentially, we need to be doing life with each other– that includes the mundane! I enjoyed reading this and finished in 2.5 days. At the end of each chapter you will find questions for discussion and action steps. It is an easy read and would be good to do with a friend!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kristina

    Chapters describe mentors who... ... Lean In... Even When It Hurts ... Play the Long Game ... Invest Without a Guaranteed Return ... Get Comfortable with Pain ... Are Called, Not Qualified ... Lead by Example ... Break the Mold ... Fight for Your Future ... Propel You Forward ... Invest Generously Each chapter includes Questions for Reflection and Discussion, and an Action Step. "Field Notes" address What About the Wrong Mentors? and When a Potential Mentor Says No. There is an Afterword about Learning Whil Chapters describe mentors who... ... Lean In... Even When It Hurts ... Play the Long Game ... Invest Without a Guaranteed Return ... Get Comfortable with Pain ... Are Called, Not Qualified ... Lead by Example ... Break the Mold ... Fight for Your Future ... Propel You Forward ... Invest Generously Each chapter includes Questions for Reflection and Discussion, and an Action Step. "Field Notes" address What About the Wrong Mentors? and When a Potential Mentor Says No. There is an Afterword about Learning While Leading.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kelsey

    I won this book in a GoodReads giveaway. Overall, the book was pretty good and had some good suggestions. However, I didn't realize how religious it was going to be (could have been my mistake when I entered that I didn't see that part of the summary?). I could have done without that emphasis since I thought it was going to be more of an instructional/informational book, but since it is clearly more of a memoir I understand her adding in those elements since it is an important part of the author I won this book in a GoodReads giveaway. Overall, the book was pretty good and had some good suggestions. However, I didn't realize how religious it was going to be (could have been my mistake when I entered that I didn't see that part of the summary?). I could have done without that emphasis since I thought it was going to be more of an instructional/informational book, but since it is clearly more of a memoir I understand her adding in those elements since it is an important part of the author.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Catherine Toon

    What a breath of fresh air this gem is! Kelsey Chapman shares her journey and life lessons learned from the mentors so generously that you are immediately drawn in. Her tone is light and conversational. And her sharing so authentic, you feel like you met a long lost friend. Kelsey's wisdom is profound as she deftly lays down stepping stone after stepping stone for others to follow on their journey. This is a must read for any young woman looking to grow personally and professionally! What a breath of fresh air this gem is! Kelsey Chapman shares her journey and life lessons learned from the mentors so generously that you are immediately drawn in. Her tone is light and conversational. And her sharing so authentic, you feel like you met a long lost friend. Kelsey's wisdom is profound as she deftly lays down stepping stone after stepping stone for others to follow on their journey. This is a must read for any young woman looking to grow personally and professionally!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Natalie Fowler

    Listened to it on Audible. Wasn't what I was hoping. A couple good take-aways but overall felt really repetitive and slightly preachy. I thought it would be more focused on how we recognize those that have mentored us and influenced us and how we can therefore uplift one another. Instead I got this personal story of a woman that I don't know that wasn't at all applicable or relatable to my life. Heavily, heavily focused on mentorship, which wasn't emphasized in the description. Listened to it on Audible. Wasn't what I was hoping. A couple good take-aways but overall felt really repetitive and slightly preachy. I thought it would be more focused on how we recognize those that have mentored us and influenced us and how we can therefore uplift one another. Instead I got this personal story of a woman that I don't know that wasn't at all applicable or relatable to my life. Heavily, heavily focused on mentorship, which wasn't emphasized in the description.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Lindsay

    This is a quick, but important book. The message is clear and well written. Women need women to mentor each other. As I read the book I reflected on all of the formal and informal mentors I’ve had in life, and I wouldn’t be where I am today without them. This book would be especially recommended to younger-middle aged women starting out, as they might not yet know the value of a great mentor or the value they, themselves would bring as a mentor to someone else.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Tiffany Marchant

    I am well impressed with how much this is impacting me! Knowing the little things you do in your day can go a long way in changing someone’s life! This book has allowed me to step back and re- asses my decisions and how it may affect others, and has given me the moment to pause and be more positive and kinder to others:)

  18. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    I am loving this book. I have looked up to so many different women in my life but never really thought of them as a mentor/mentee relationship. Kelsey has such a personable way of relating her stories and experiences to every day people. How to see mentors in your life every day even if you are unaware of it. Highly recommend this book!!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Meredith Boggs

    Mentorship is one of the most important catalyst for growth personally, spiritually, and professionally. In What They Taught Me, Kelsey outlines how seek out mentors and how to be one! with wisdom and inspiring stories, this is a roadmap for taking all the dreams in your heart to DONE and championing other women to do the same!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Anne Samoilov

    Kelsey speaks to women everywhere who need mentors and people who believe in them. She knows that success is a collaborative project. She gives back so much and with this book pays it forward to women with dreams who may think they are alone too! I love how personal and completely universal and relatable each story was! Thank you Kelsey!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Lohana Abrego

    This is a wonderful book with insights on what different menotrs have to offer. How women in Kelsey's life have imprinted on her. This book is great especially for people in their early late-teens/20s because it show cases the reality of how we all need community and have people in our corner to cheer us on, love on us, and even call us out for our mistakes. This is a wonderful book with insights on what different menotrs have to offer. How women in Kelsey's life have imprinted on her. This book is great especially for people in their early late-teens/20s because it show cases the reality of how we all need community and have people in our corner to cheer us on, love on us, and even call us out for our mistakes.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Lauren Peters

    This book is truly for all ages. This is more than just a book of stories, but is also jam packed with so much fruitful information, ways to apply that information, and ways to actually get closer to getting a mentor and being a better mentor. I personally read this book by myself, but I look forward to reading it in a group sometimes very soon.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Bailey T. Hurley

    This book is the PERFECT guide to realistic and meaningful mentorship. Kelsey covers everything and right when a question pops into my head, I turn the page and she has an answer. Truly, every girl needs this book, whether you are interested in mentorship or have ever thought about it. We need more mentors in this world and Kelsey is going to give you the best practices to do it well.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Rachel Taylor

    When I say there are not enough conversations about the power of mentorship happening right now. Man. I didn’t know how much I needed this book and these stories but wow! Kelsey’s art of story telling and lessons learned along the way is a true gift. Really enjoyed the writing style and vulnerability with the stories shared.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jenn

    I won a copy of this book. Kelsey Chapman chronicles the women in her life who have been mentors to her and discusses how each played a part in her success by taking an interest in her. Good advice for anyone who is looking to be...or has found themselves as a mentor. Also, great questions at the end of each chapter to think on.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Michelle Glogovac

    I love Kelsey’s openness and ability to be vulnerable in her book. I felt inspired along the way. I found Kelsey and her journey very relatable and felt inspired to reflect on my own mentors that I’ve been lucky enough to have and how I want to show up for others.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    This book is really great! I am totally inspired to become a mentor myself. Kelsey shares some of her life story in this book. I feel like throughout the whole book, i was able to relate to her. Make sure you get yourself a copy of this book! You will be truly blessed!!!

  28. 5 out of 5

    JoshandJenny Meadows

    If you are anyone who has been invested in and is looking to take that knowledge elsewhere and the importance of it look no further. Kelsey’s wisdom is so needed when we want to invest in others lives and see the fruit in our own.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Andrea Crisp

    Could not put this book down. These beautiful stories of mentorship pulled on my heart strings and remind the reader that we all need community to thrive in life. This book is easy to read and will inspire you to reach out for support in your life.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kelsey Diane Barber

    Mentorship and relationships matter more than many of us realize. Kelsey has put her experience and learning into this incredible memoir. Read her stories, learn how to become a better mentor and mentee. You won’t regret reading these words.

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