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Layne Beachley aims for more stars
02 August 2011
“When things aren’t looking good, I share my disappointments with people who support me... If you can find people who can share in your journey honestly and without making judgments, you have a better chance at succeeding,” believes Layne.
This sharing in the journey is one of the motivations behind the establishment of her Aim for the Stars Foundation (www.aimforthestars.com.au), which “offers ambitious and dedicated females an opportunity to receive financial and moral support to help them achieve their goals”.
“If you can share in other people’s journeys and lift their spirits,” believes Layne, “you can become a foundation of support for them. I had a challenging time, but I also learned a great deal during my own journey which I like to share with others.”
Layne is quick to acknowledge her influence on women and the important responsibility that came with success. She accepted her casting as a role model early on, embracing it and taking it very seriously: “I’ve also had to learn to lead by example because I’m aware my choices have an impact on both me and others. ‘Aim for the Stars’ is a way I can contribute to the success of others through sharing both my successes and failures.”
The Layne Beachley Aim for the Stars Foundation was created in 2003 to inspire girls and women across Australia to dream and achieve.
“Every year we fly them [the recipients] in to celebrate their successes at the annual fundraiser,” Layne explains. “We put them through a goal orientation workshop, provide them with presentation skills and PR support for each individual girl. We provide them with a platform of clarity and help them financially.”
The Foundation has given away over $360,000 to more than 200 girls and women Australia wide.
Layne’s rise to the pinnacle of the women’s surfing circuit followed many years competing on the local surfing scene – often participating in and winning men’s competitions. During those early days, Layne cut a lone female figure. It’s something with which many women in many walks of life will no doubt empathise.
Layne’s success has been inspirational on many levels – but she hasn’t been satisfied to leave it there. She is not simply a fantastic mentor for aspiring women. She is in fact a role model for other successful women.
Through courage, self-belief and raw determination, she not only made it to the top but she’s willing to share her experiences and support those who follow. For some the journey to the top can be a very jading process that can lead to a cynicism or resentment toward those that follow. It’s the: “I did it tough and I made it” attitude.
Layne acknowledges she did it tough, but she doesn’t expect everyone to walk the same path. By sharing her journey, the lessons she’s learned along the way, and opening doors for others, Layne demonstrates that truly great people do more than just succeed in their own right, they offer both a source of inspiration and a pathway to success for others.
Layne Beachley features in The Power of 100, Westpac’s commemorative International Women’s Day tribute to Australian women. To purchase the book go to 100australianwomen.com.au
Jeannene O’Day writes for the Daily Gloss (dailygloss.com) under the pseudonym BizGirl. Jeannene’s experiences include motherhood and working in the finance industry in Hong Kong, Japan and Australia. She has worked as an executive in Corporate Finance, Institutional Broking and Asset Management. However, her years working two stints on high testosterone institutional investor dealing desks have not been quite enough to prepare her for life as a mother of two sons. Apart from her passions for family, food and fashion, Jeannene is an avid supporter of diversity and women in the workplace.