kelsey lynne

Work Hard, Rest Well

Sep 6

Earlier this year I was pondering life. Just kidding, I was writing an Instagram caption from a weekend trip that Kyle took me on. And I wrote out the words “Work Hard, Play Hard.”

…and I quickly shook my head and erased it.

During this weekend away, we were doing absolutely no “playing hard”. We were resting. We binge watched 2 seasons of the Office. We ordered room service. I took hot baths and a million naps.

So instead I typed out the phrase,

 “Work Hard, Rest Well”. 

It has since been my motto for 2017. I have had moments when the idea of resting feels so far away. Selling a house, buying a house, and moving all in the midst of wedding season. LOL. Let me just kick back with a pina colada and eat some chocolate…NEXT YEAR.

So here I am. Smack in the midst of transition.

Our new home won’t be ready for us to move in for a few months, and my parents are being so gracious and saving us all the money by letting us stay in their spare room. Before you roll your eyes, let me tell you – it is going super well. And my mom is some sort of laundry magician. In the midst of listing/selling our house, I apparently lost the ability to do laundry, except for the necessities. Within 24 hours of moving in to her home, she had done 9 loads of my laundry. NINE. I cried. Actual tears. It was the best gift.

Back to the point…

I am the kind of person who like to get things done. I like work. I like running my business. I enjoy it. But with that means that sometimes I have a hard time saying “no” or turning off my laptop and stopping work. Because, News Flash, the work never ends. There is always something we COULD be doing.

The blessing of running your own business is that you are your own boss. So if I think pajamas are acceptable editing attire (which they ARE), I get to call those shots. But the opposite side of that coin – is that there is nobody telling you “you’ve done enough today, go home, it can wait until tomorrow.”

Ok. I lied. My husband tells me those things. So do my parents. So does my bestie. They have to remind me consistently that the work can wait until tomorrow, and that I don’t have to do everything on my to-do list in the next 12 hour period.

So. The working hard thing. I’ve got that down.

And I think a lot of us do.

But the RESTING part.

That’s where the tension is. The struggle. The part of the equation that I/we are still trying to figure out.

Because a life of endless work and play will be a life that we burn out quickly from. Going from one mountain top to the next, like being on a consistent zip line will leave us begging for moments to catch our breath. We can work hard and we can play hard, but there is a third part of the equation that is necessary to be whole.

The resting part is the habit we have to form. The lesson we have to learn over and over. The thing that doesn’t come naturally.

Work is like riding a bike. Once you learn, you never forget. But rest. Rest is more complex. Rest is the lesson I keep coming back to, the one I have to remind myself of as seasons pass.

I’ve found that the things I crave in the seasons of busy are not wild river rafting trips or late night dance parties. In the midst of working hard, I crave rest instead of play.

The things I crave are simple. 

A meal with our best friends.

Getting a pedicure with one of my favorite girls.

Reading a book in the sunshine.

Waking up slow with a cup of good coffee.

A walk after the sun has gone down when the day cools off.

Deep Breaths.

A hot bath.

Catching up with a friend on the phone.

Writing a letter.

Browsing Amazon for a new book to read.

Putting on a face mask & washing my face super well.

Making soup.

Listening to Josh Garrells.

A night away with my husband.

Searching Pinterest for how to make Panang Curry.

I think so often when we hear the word REST we assume that we have to be laying down taking a nap. But I’ve learned that doing the things above refresh me. Rest doesn’t have to mean sleep. It means “to cease work or movement in order to relax, refresh oneself, and recover strength.”

BOOYAH. Recover Strength? Bless.

I knew this rest thing was necessary.

I am only strong when I am taking time to rest. When I am recovering the strength I am using during all of those work hours.

I know our culture wears “Busy” as a badge of honor. When people ask how we are doing, it’s a common response. And I’m just as guilty of using it as an excuse.

And with my business being so visible on social media, I feel that in order for people to think I am doing a good job, I should be consistently posting and shooting…I consistently have to combat this mindset.

Instead, I realized that what I need. What my husband needs. What my family needs. What my friends need. What my clients need…They need me rested. They need me refreshed. They need me taking care of myself so that I don’t hit that point of burnout.

So, tonight, I am going to do a few things on my to-do list and then I’m going to snuggle up with my favorite blanket and a book I am loving. I’m going to remind myself that I need rest JUST as much as I need work.

Maybe you need to be reminded also.

Rest Well,



Photo of Our Room by : Echo Photography


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