The 'Twilight Saga' star says she struggled for roles when she first arrived in Hollywood so decided she needed to focus more on her career and less on going out.
The 25-year-old beauty said: "In my second year in Los Angeles, when I was 18, I wasn't getting any bookings. So I stopped going out, stopped partying. It was a matter of getting to the work. I had to focus."
Ashley also revealed how she's looking forward to turning 30 as she thinks she will have more choices when it comes to work.
She told Esquire magazine: "It's a good age. It's an age of choices. What 'Twilight' gave me was years to consider how I wanted to work otherwise."
Ashley - who played Alice Cullen in the vampire franchise - will next be seen alongside Hugh Jackman and Olivia Wilde in 'Butter', an independent film about a small-town girl who discovers her talent for butter carving and finds herself pitted against an ambitious local woman in their town's annual contest.