Layne Beachley: How to own your fear so it doesn’t own you
Layne Beachley is a household name for most Aussies and a woman highly admired by athletes around the globe for her back-to-back world champion surfing titles. Recently honored with an Order of Australia, Layne has accrued a wealth of wisdom when it comes to overcoming fear, staying focused, handling failure and living a life that matters. (Layne is the founder of the Aim for the Stars Foundation.)
During my recent conversation with Layne for RawCourage.TV she shared how, while coaching Australia’s 2012 Olympic team, she witnessed fear sabotage the dreams of some of the world’s most elite athletes. Which just goes to show that it doesn’t matter how skilled or successful you are, unless you are really intentional in where you put your attention, fear, and the self-doubt it breeds, can overtake reason, chip away at your self-confidence, derail your efforts and keep you from doing the very things needed to achieve whatever it is that you want – in your work, in your relationships, in your finances…everywhere!
It doesn’t matter how skilled or successful you are, unless you are really intentional in where you put your attention, fear can derail your efforts and keep you from doing the very things needed to achieve whatever it is that you want.
Self-awareness lays at the foundation for living a truly rewarding life. So too does brutal self-honesty. It begins by paying attention to what you’re paying attention to – to noticing where you are giving what it is you’re afraid may happen more energy and power than what it is you’d truly love to make happen.
As Layne shared in our interview, when teaching people to surf she doesn’t stick them on the massive 10+metre (45ft) waves she’s surfed herself. She starts them on small ones, just outside their comfort zone, and builds from there. So yes, focus on the big things that inspire you, but then start small, with what’s right in front of you. Courage, confidence and competence are all built in increments.
So as you look toward your future, ask yourself where fear of what you don’t want is keeping you from pursuing what you do. Trust your heart. Go with your gut. Lean into your fear and take action despite it. Any action!
Just don’t let what scares you keep you from living a life that you know in your heart you want to live.