How To Make the Most out of Everyday

Laura Henshaw

I get so many emails about how to manage time and balance life between modelling, university and my business and so I wanted to summarise some of my thoughts and tips to managing life here.

While I wish I could give you guys a secret code to log into a website that unlocked more hours in the day, unfortunately the only secret I can share is how important hard work is. I am a big believer in the phrase: hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard.

I have never personally been academically gifted, I have always just worked hard. I was the kid who spent 10 hours a day in the library for two months before my year 12 exams and wrote over 100 practise essays to pass english to be able to get into my course. I remember always being so jealous of the naturally gifted kids who could read something once and then remember it and didn't need to study to get good marks. It is funny writing this now and imagining my 18 year old self reading this. I never thought I would say it, but I am now grateful for having to work hard to do well in anything as it has taught me how good it feels when you work your butt off for something and it pays off. There is something pretty incredible about the feeling when you give something your all and when you're finished you know there is absolutely nothing more you could have possibly done.

Now I can imagine you are sitting at your desk wondering what hard work has to do with time management? The two are more connected than you could imagine.

You need to be able to realise that you need to work hard to achieve your dreams. And to work hard you need to dedicate hours to things, and manage your time in order to allow you to do so.

I came to this realisation a few years ago while I was sitting waiting to do my Evidence and Procedure Moot (any law student will know how scary this is) and I was chatting with a mature aged student to try and distract myself from the fact I felt like I was going to throw up. While I probably should have been concentrating on memorising legislation, instead I had a light bulb moment I will never forget after hearing this student's story. He commuted from Bendigo to Melbourne to study law, had three kids and also worked full time. Hearing this made my life suddenly seem not so busy as I had once thought. It actually made by full time study/part time work stresses seem quite insignificant.

I remind myself of this man every time I think my life is too busy. I can assure you, there will always be someone working harder or longer than you and you have a choice to be intimidated by this or instead (I recommend this option) to be motivated and driven by this.

I believe if you apply the above to everything in your life you can balance a lot more than you could ever imagine. I remember last year when I was starting my business thinking to myself how on earth I would manage it with my modelling, university studies, recipe development for the Keep it Clean e book and then find time to be social and exercise. But I did it. And then I thought exactly the same thing when I added my personal training course into the mix. But I did it. And then again when Steph and I started working on Keep it Cleaner. But I did it.

I made simple changes to my life such as getting up two hours earlier to fit in exercise and some time to reply to emails. I taught myself to study more efficiently. I started carrying my laptop around so if I ever had to wait at an airport, before an appointment or between meetings I could do work. I played my lectures while I was driving. I used my uni breaks to study. I joined a gym close to uni to cut travel time. I swapped my usual 30 minute television time each night for work time. I got a diary and planned my week out every Sunday night to organise my time better.

The thing you will find when you do something you love or something that you are driven towards achieving is that you will always find a way to get it done. You will make the time.

Don't expect to always love everything you do. I don't think I know many people who love every single uni subject they do (I definitely do not) but let yourself be driven by where your degree will take you when you finish. Don't expect to find a passionate career in your first part time job. I certainly did not have a huge passion for working at Subway or waitressing at a pizza cafe for over five years but I did it because it meant I could save for a car which I could use to drive to uni which I used as my motivation.

My final piece of advice is to find your balance.

Reading through all of the above may make me sound like a crazy person but I can assure you my life is balanced and I am happy and healthy. My 'me time' every day is my hour of exercise, I find it extremely therapeutic and a way to open my mind before the day starts. I never ever compromise on this. No matter how busy I am I always fit in my exercise because I know if I don't there is no way I will be productive enough to get through my tasks for the day.

It is also important to fit in your friends, it is nice to have something to look forward to at the end of the working week and sometimes this is what keeps me sane and gets me through the week. Trust me when I say- YOU NEED THIS. You deserve a night off every now and then to let your hair down, forget about work and have a laugh with friends. You should never go a day without smiling about something.

Sleep is your friend. While sometimes deadlines can affect your sleep, it is essential that you prioritise it. I have a 9:30pm rule and never allow myself to work past this time. This allows me to switch off and have some down time before going to sleep. You can't sleep when you're wired and you are definitely not productive when you are tired.

I promise you, the busier you get, the more organised and better at managing your time you will become. You can do anything when you are driven enough to do so and after all….

We all have the same amount of hours in the day as Beyonce.