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Tell Her She Can’t: Inspiring Stories of Unstoppable Women

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Who says you can’t? Tell Her She Can’t is the manifesto for every woman who has been told she isn’t strong enough, smart enough, or capable enough to excel—and the motivational anthem for those who have succeeded despite doubt. Your vision of change is possible, with the right guides to light your way. Entrepreneur Kelly Lewis shares the true stories of 35 inspirational wom Who says you can’t? Tell Her She Can’t is the manifesto for every woman who has been told she isn’t strong enough, smart enough, or capable enough to excel—and the motivational anthem for those who have succeeded despite doubt. Your vision of change is possible, with the right guides to light your way. Entrepreneur Kelly Lewis shares the true stories of 35 inspirational women who overcame the naysayers to achieve “impossible” dreams. Learn from trailblazers who tackled outdated typecasts in Hollywood and champions who advocate for greater representation of Indigenous cultures. Tell Her She Can’t is packed with motivational stories of adventurers, changemakers, and prevailers who have taken on the world to become pioneers in their fields or challenged gender stereotypes to build million-dollar businesses. These inspiring women transformed adversity into a springboard for empowerment and success—and you can too. You’ll discover: • How to reframe life’s challenges into unique opportunities with Tools to Triumph. • Key strategies to boldly turn negativity into resilient fuel and break boundaries holding you back. • Why others say you can’t—and what they really mean when they do. • A celebration of defiance, resilience and feminine strength. • Inspiration from women at all stages of life who prove that nothing is off-limits. A powerhouse guide for every modern woman and girl, Tell Her She Can’t invites you to blast past the gatekeepers of “can’t” and become unstoppable.


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Who says you can’t? Tell Her She Can’t is the manifesto for every woman who has been told she isn’t strong enough, smart enough, or capable enough to excel—and the motivational anthem for those who have succeeded despite doubt. Your vision of change is possible, with the right guides to light your way. Entrepreneur Kelly Lewis shares the true stories of 35 inspirational wom Who says you can’t? Tell Her She Can’t is the manifesto for every woman who has been told she isn’t strong enough, smart enough, or capable enough to excel—and the motivational anthem for those who have succeeded despite doubt. Your vision of change is possible, with the right guides to light your way. Entrepreneur Kelly Lewis shares the true stories of 35 inspirational women who overcame the naysayers to achieve “impossible” dreams. Learn from trailblazers who tackled outdated typecasts in Hollywood and champions who advocate for greater representation of Indigenous cultures. Tell Her She Can’t is packed with motivational stories of adventurers, changemakers, and prevailers who have taken on the world to become pioneers in their fields or challenged gender stereotypes to build million-dollar businesses. These inspiring women transformed adversity into a springboard for empowerment and success—and you can too. You’ll discover: • How to reframe life’s challenges into unique opportunities with Tools to Triumph. • Key strategies to boldly turn negativity into resilient fuel and break boundaries holding you back. • Why others say you can’t—and what they really mean when they do. • A celebration of defiance, resilience and feminine strength. • Inspiration from women at all stages of life who prove that nothing is off-limits. A powerhouse guide for every modern woman and girl, Tell Her She Can’t invites you to blast past the gatekeepers of “can’t” and become unstoppable.

58 review for Tell Her She Can’t: Inspiring Stories of Unstoppable Women

  1. 5 out of 5

    Tera Eilers

    Can You Describe What A Hot Dog Tastes Like?? Headline for attention, but honestly this was one of the first (of many) questions that really made me think while reading this inspirational, empowering, and thought-provoking debut by Kelly Lewis. Who is Kelly Lewis? First off, I can tell you who she is not: -She is not going to tell you to wash anything -She is not going to sell you a workshop, online course, or any accompanying workbook (she actually gives you that for free) -She does not claim to be Can You Describe What A Hot Dog Tastes Like?? Headline for attention, but honestly this was one of the first (of many) questions that really made me think while reading this inspirational, empowering, and thought-provoking debut by Kelly Lewis. Who is Kelly Lewis? First off, I can tell you who she is not: -She is not going to tell you to wash anything -She is not going to sell you a workshop, online course, or any accompanying workbook (she actually gives you that for free) -She does not claim to be an expert, psychologist, or to have a “magic potion” to solve all your problems Kelly grew up in Hawaii where her home life wasn’t nearly as sunny as it might have appeared on the outside. Her formative years often included periods of emotional abuse, anxiety, low self-worth, and the constant reminder that she wasn’t good enough. Like so many of us, she was often told that “she can’t” more often than “she could.” However, that didn’t stop this 30-something powerhouse who is considered one of the founding mothers of women’s solo travel and has grown two successful businesses from the seeds of a dream, hard work, and slinging a lot of cocktails in New York dive bars. As someone who has worked closely with the UPENN’s Masters of Applied Positive Psychology department on the U.S. Army’s Master Resilience Training program since 2010, I’m pretty read in the subjects of building resilience and optimism. I can say that “Tell Her She Can’t” isn’t some self-inflating manifesto that rebrands time-tested theories, and other people’s research, as their own. What “Tell Her She Can’t” does is beautifully weave Kelly’s personal stories with the inspiring stories of women from all over the world who were also told they can’t, but DID. The stories of these women are categorized in chapters and told in short vignettes that make the book a super easy and fast read. I love that the women featured are both extraordinary and ordinary; there are stories of women breaking down government institutions, challenging established industries, and redefining stereotypes…but also stories of women who are fighting diabetes, changing perceptions on aging and alopecia, and bouncing back from illness and injury. Each chapter includes a summary at the end and asks the reader questions that will get you thinking about how you can make BIG and small changes in your own life to achieve your goals and dreams… and yes...how to describe what a hot dog tastes like. I think my favorite part of the book is how relatable, vulnerable, and authentic the author is. Kelly shares stories of shame, struggle with self-image, pulling out her eyelashes, and overcoming emotional abuse, love addiction and codependence in romantic relationships along with climbing mountains, jumping off buildings and riding camels. You will not only root for Kelly and these women… at the end of this book you will root for yourself.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Tiffany Bumgardner

    As an avid nonfiction reader I was thrilled to get this book filled with impactful stories of women doing amazing things— including things they were often told they can’t. I truly wish several things about this book. That it was longer because I wanted to spend so much more time with the author but also the amazing women she features ( can they all starts memoirs please???). And I also really wish this book spent more time with Kelly, I love that she chose to feature other powerful stories becau As an avid nonfiction reader I was thrilled to get this book filled with impactful stories of women doing amazing things— including things they were often told they can’t. I truly wish several things about this book. That it was longer because I wanted to spend so much more time with the author but also the amazing women she features ( can they all starts memoirs please???). And I also really wish this book spent more time with Kelly, I love that she chose to feature other powerful stories because it was incredible but the parts were we heard from her, and her voice were compelling. Overall, this is great read and can be accomplished in one sitting. It really inspires you the reader to go out and smash to pieces the expectation that you can’t do what you dream about.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sindhu S

    This book is a non-fiction anthology of 35 stories of women who were told they can’t accomplish what they wanted but proved otherwise in style. The stories are not uniform in length or tone but are bound together in various sections by the common attitude/characteristic/ability of the women they feature. In between these stories, Lewis shares her insight on the particular attitude/characteristic/ability on which a section focuses. This makes the book a cohesive whole despite the diversity of the This book is a non-fiction anthology of 35 stories of women who were told they can’t accomplish what they wanted but proved otherwise in style. The stories are not uniform in length or tone but are bound together in various sections by the common attitude/characteristic/ability of the women they feature. In between these stories, Lewis shares her insight on the particular attitude/characteristic/ability on which a section focuses. This makes the book a cohesive whole despite the diversity of the women and the stories featured. The book has some errors: for example, at one point in Stephanie Plymale’s story, it is given “They have now been married for over 35 years” and at another, “… has been married to her high school sweetheart for 30 years.” Such errors could have been avoided had the book been proofread well. I like stories of second chances, of empowerment, of success after years of failure and disappointment. My life story can be summarized as ‘She got back up after each fall, however severe the injuries were.’ So, it was only natural that I liked Tell Her She Can’t. Note: I received an advance review copy from BookSirens in exchange for an honest review.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Kelsey Kay

    I can’t say enough good things about this book. The genuine rawness of these amazing stories and how the author was was able capture their voice with every word kept you coming back page after page, to get to the next inspirational narrative. This book is approachable, it is coaching without preaching, motivating without being overwhelming, and a must read for women of all ages and stages in life. I bought a copy for my 70 year old mother and my 21 & 22 year old nieces, but that’s only the begin I can’t say enough good things about this book. The genuine rawness of these amazing stories and how the author was was able capture their voice with every word kept you coming back page after page, to get to the next inspirational narrative. This book is approachable, it is coaching without preaching, motivating without being overwhelming, and a must read for women of all ages and stages in life. I bought a copy for my 70 year old mother and my 21 & 22 year old nieces, but that’s only the beginning of my list of women (and some men) that I’m excited to share my new favorite book with!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Molly

    Was lucky enough to get an advanced copy of this book and I LOVED it! The author's own travel stories and personal experiences were both captivating and relatable, and reading all of the stories of the women featured left me feeling motivated and inspired. I cried, I laughed, and I feel like I got to know each of them. Super cool concept! Was lucky enough to get an advanced copy of this book and I LOVED it! The author's own travel stories and personal experiences were both captivating and relatable, and reading all of the stories of the women featured left me feeling motivated and inspired. I cried, I laughed, and I feel like I got to know each of them. Super cool concept!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Faye

    I got this book as an advanced copy and truly loved it! It really is the feminist version of Chicken Soup for the Soul - can't wait to read more by the author! I got this book as an advanced copy and truly loved it! It really is the feminist version of Chicken Soup for the Soul - can't wait to read more by the author!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Rachael Stray

    Tell Her She Can’t: Inspiring Stories of Unstoppable Women by Kelly Lewis is a compilation of thirty-five stories that demonstrate how each featured woman overcame different obstacles to accomplish what they set out to do. I really enjoyed the different stories of the featured women as well as snippets from Kelly Lewis’s life too. The accounts of the featured women vary in length and tone, ranging from the story of Autism activist Taylor Linloff who created Aspirational Autistic and continues to c Tell Her She Can’t: Inspiring Stories of Unstoppable Women by Kelly Lewis is a compilation of thirty-five stories that demonstrate how each featured woman overcame different obstacles to accomplish what they set out to do. I really enjoyed the different stories of the featured women as well as snippets from Kelly Lewis’s life too. The accounts of the featured women vary in length and tone, ranging from the story of Autism activist Taylor Linloff who created Aspirational Autistic and continues to champion the cause, to Mirna Valerio, the running phenomenon who is known for her blog Fat Girl Running and for being at the forefront of the body-positivity movement. Interspersed throughout the book Lewis provides insight and is able to effectively weave the writing snapshots into a book that is as diverse as it is motivational. I found myself promising to read just a few chapters a day but found it difficult to put this book down. Tell Her She Can’t is designed to empower women and I love that it is a collaborative effort – I definitely felt empowered and inspired when reading this book. I also liked Lewis’s “Tools to Triumph”, the closing of each chapter that personalises and calls to action change in our own lives. This is the type of book I will refer back to especially the “Tools To Triumph” if I’m in need of a confidence boost. Lots of themes are covered within this book – feminism, gender inequality, disability, racism, and of course sexism. It’s a wonderful collection of stories that I hope my daughter will gain inspiration and motivation from.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Brittney

    Stop thinking about it and buy this book IMMEDIATELY! I cannot begin to say enough good things about this book. I’m leaving these pages S O inspired and wanting more. This book is truly the modern day “Chicken soup for the soul (for women).” Each story was inspirational, a perfect length and I love how the author, Kelly Lewis, has each group categorized. Kelly shares pivotal times in her life where she was told she couldn’t, and how she overcame those obstacles. The group of women in the book are Stop thinking about it and buy this book IMMEDIATELY! I cannot begin to say enough good things about this book. I’m leaving these pages S O inspired and wanting more. This book is truly the modern day “Chicken soup for the soul (for women).” Each story was inspirational, a perfect length and I love how the author, Kelly Lewis, has each group categorized. Kelly shares pivotal times in her life where she was told she couldn’t, and how she overcame those obstacles. The group of women in the book are so diverse and approachable. I’m left with so much gratitude to the women who shared their challenges and successes and can’t wait for the next person to tell me I can’t so I can prove them wrong!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Colleen White

    When you reach a "can't" situation in life, this book will help remind you that YOU CAN! Kelly's life experience along with the collection of personal short stories by incredible women are truly inspiring. Experiencing their trials and triumphs through their words will leave you emotionally, physically, and mentally motivated to conquer your blockmakers. Kelly did a fantastic job putting this book together. Many of the stories are relatable and encourage you to move forward. It's time to surround When you reach a "can't" situation in life, this book will help remind you that YOU CAN! Kelly's life experience along with the collection of personal short stories by incredible women are truly inspiring. Experiencing their trials and triumphs through their words will leave you emotionally, physically, and mentally motivated to conquer your blockmakers. Kelly did a fantastic job putting this book together. Many of the stories are relatable and encourage you to move forward. It's time to surround yourself with an army of strong, resilient women.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Lindsay Watkins

    Man, I did NOT want to put this book down once I started! To be completely honest, I wasn't sure exactly what to expect going in to it, and wondered if it was going to be another "Go girl! Women power! Rah rah!" kind of book. NOPE. Don't get me wrong - you'll definitely come out of this book feeling empowered to take on the world! But the moment Kelly starts sharing her story, you know this isn't just another feel good tale. The rawness, depth, and persistence of these women's stories will make y Man, I did NOT want to put this book down once I started! To be completely honest, I wasn't sure exactly what to expect going in to it, and wondered if it was going to be another "Go girl! Women power! Rah rah!" kind of book. NOPE. Don't get me wrong - you'll definitely come out of this book feeling empowered to take on the world! But the moment Kelly starts sharing her story, you know this isn't just another feel good tale. The rawness, depth, and persistence of these women's stories will make you want to set the world on fire, AND make you believe that you are actually capable of doing so!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Angie

    When you have a bad day - and we all do - read this book from superwoman Kelly Lewis. It’ll lift you up and inspire you in so many ways. I really appreciated the diversity of the subjects. There were so many unique stories of women overcoming obstacles; while I didn’t see myself in every story, each had something I could relate to my own circumstances. You will probably want to break glass ceilings and save the world after reading, so be prepared!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kelsey

    I cannot recommend this book enough. This book will be truly inspiring to anyone anywhere. Each of the stories showed such tenacious and determined women who overcame so many obstacles, uncluding Kelly herself. Each story is perfectly summed up and I found myself emotionally attached to each one. As someone that suffers from physical and mental health issues, it was reassuring and inspiring to read about women who overcame all kinds of obstacles. Thank you Kelly. This book is a must read.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    This is the book the world needs right now! It’s full of hope and inspiration and left me with the feeling that I could do anything I put my mind to. I was immediately drawn into these women’s lives and wanted to learn more and more about them. That’s the books only fault, that you can’t have more time with each of these ladies...including Kelly herself. I loved this book and will be buying it as a gift for friends and family...everyone deserves to read this stories and be inspired!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Sierra Melcher

    When Women come together to share their stories, & their truth, to open up & shine they blaze a trail wide enough & bright enough for all to follow. The world needs more books like this to change the tide of the dominant narrative. This is an anthology, sort of. A chorus of women's voices that show indomitable spirit. When Women come together to share their stories, & their truth, to open up & shine they blaze a trail wide enough & bright enough for all to follow. The world needs more books like this to change the tide of the dominant narrative. This is an anthology, sort of. A chorus of women's voices that show indomitable spirit.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Brittany Anne

    Want to feel the power and awe of feminine strength from all over the world? Read this book! This book was not only a collection of true stories about real women making a difference in today’s world, it is also a guide to finding that inner strength for yourself. I felt like my knowledge of badass women grew 10 fold after being introduced to them. The quick bio provided after each story was also a perfect how-to learn more about them and support their endeavors. In a word, this book is COMMUNITY. I Want to feel the power and awe of feminine strength from all over the world? Read this book! This book was not only a collection of true stories about real women making a difference in today’s world, it is also a guide to finding that inner strength for yourself. I felt like my knowledge of badass women grew 10 fold after being introduced to them. The quick bio provided after each story was also a perfect how-to learn more about them and support their endeavors. In a word, this book is COMMUNITY. In an action, it’s a MUST READ!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Jackie

    Kelly ties her adventures with the success of women from all walks of life in many different ways. How cool to have the achievements of so many extraordinary women in one place. No matter where you come from or what you are working with you can and will succeed. You will leave feeling empowered, encouraged and ready!!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Allison Sodha

    As a contributor to the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, I can honestly say this is the modern version of inspirational storytelling at its best. Kelly Lewis weaves a beautiful tapestry of her own life and the experiences of others who refuse to let the critics dim their light. The thoughtful collection of stories are impactful, relatable, and leave the reader wanting more. Highly recommend!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    The author handles these precious personal stories with tenderness and care. She keeps the reader uplifted and inspired. This is a must read for all who feel or have been told that they are inadequate, less than, and can’t.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Helen Sharp

    I loved this book. Kelly Lewis has a fresh, inspiring voice and it's no surprise she brought together such a strong, interesting group of women. So uplifting and a book you can easily finish without ever putting it down. The book kept me wanting more - I can't wait for the sequel!! I loved this book. Kelly Lewis has a fresh, inspiring voice and it's no surprise she brought together such a strong, interesting group of women. So uplifting and a book you can easily finish without ever putting it down. The book kept me wanting more - I can't wait for the sequel!!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Veleta Vancza

    Tell Her She Can’t is a must read for anyone who needs a kick in the ass! The book offers authentic motivation and inspiration from a spectrum of women who have been shut down (as we all have at some point). Expect to laugh, cry, and then roll up your sleeves to make your own dreams come true!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Erica

    Great collection of diverse stories! I loved that the book was easy to pick up, put down and read out of order depending on my mood (serious, happy, sad, curious). This is a wonderful anthology of inspirational stories and a great commuter book for those on the go.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Cindy Ross

    Kelly did an amazing job capturing the stories of these incredibly strong ladies. The inspiration is contagious and I highly recommend this book to all my female friends. Kelly you are an incredible role model for all. I can’t wait to read your next book.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Beth

    Just read! It’s inspiring to women all over the world. As a female traveler this book could not be more relatable!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Heidi Siefkas

    Powerful collection of 35 women’s stories with a wide lesson in each. Read this book and share it with your sisters, girlfriends, mom, aunties, and co-workers. Bravo Kelly Lewis!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Rachel M.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Tippe Morlan

  27. 4 out of 5

    Valerie

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jessica Ann

  29. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Cox

  30. 4 out of 5

    Breanne

  31. 5 out of 5

    Lydia Nefedov

  32. 5 out of 5

    Adrianne B.

  33. 5 out of 5

    Robin

  34. 4 out of 5

    Jenn Wayboer

  35. 5 out of 5

    Micielle

  36. 5 out of 5

    Rose and Mike Mccarthy

  37. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Masci

  38. 5 out of 5

    Amy Wigand

  39. 5 out of 5

    Jeanne Grace

  40. 4 out of 5

    Steff

  41. 5 out of 5

    Linda Galella

  42. 5 out of 5

    Johnna

  43. 4 out of 5

    Kayla Kemner

  44. 5 out of 5

    Garrett

  45. 5 out of 5

    Cathy Tilton

  46. 4 out of 5

    lou brown

  47. 4 out of 5

    Carissa Hannum

  48. 4 out of 5

    Sam

  49. 5 out of 5

    Shelley

  50. 5 out of 5

    Kim Ellis

  51. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

  52. 5 out of 5

    Deborah Hughes

  53. 4 out of 5

    Pia Surgent

  54. 5 out of 5

    Deb

  55. 5 out of 5

    Bismah

  56. 5 out of 5

    Shelley n

  57. 5 out of 5

    Mary Cummins

  58. 4 out of 5

    Kimberly Anderson

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