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Whitney Houston

Whitney believed she wasn't good enough. How is this possible?

Monday, February 20, 2012 by: Mike Bundrant
Tags: Whitney Houston, self esteem, Kevin Costner

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(NaturalNews) "Arguably the most talented singer in the world believed she wasn't good enough."
Kevin Costner, as spoken at Whitney Houston's funeral

Kevin Costner explained at the funeral how he had to hold Whitney's hand, consoling her, assuring her that she could do it; that she had the talent to play a role in The Bodyguard. She didn't believe she was good enough.

We all question our self-worth at one time or another. All of us need reassurance from time to time, especially in high pressure situations. What happens, however, when occasional self-doubt turns into chronic self-doubt, self-loathing or self-destruction? And why are self-doubt and the troubles that come from it so common among those who have obvious talent?

There is no simple answer to these questions and no one will ever know what was going on in Whitney Houston's mind. The most we can do when is raise some worthwhile questions about human nature and try to learn from them.

The self esteem trap

When we set out to become something great, we automatically invite a degree of self-doubt. Even the great spiritual leaders of every spiritual discipline doubted themselves at some point along their path. No one is immune.

Self-doubt is amplified if we focus on an ego-based goal (I do not think the ego is "bad" however). For example, if I imagine myself to be a handsome devil, I simultaneously raise the question that I might not be, or that someone else might be more handsome than I. Focusing on being handsome, I invite insecurity. This may lead me to take greater and greater measures to improve my looks. The chronic insecurity can become quite powerful and even distort my judgment.

This is the trap. If I set out to become the best, I face the possibility of being the worst. If I set out to win, I invite the possibility of losing. I don't invite the possibility of losing intentionally. It is inherent in the process. Winning and losing are defined by each other, as are beauty and ugliness, wealth and poverty, bitter and sweet. Much of our human experience is dualistic in nature, as determined by our primitive brain. Even seeking oneness includes the possibility of "many-ness."

This same principle applies to seeking self-esteem. When we focus on raising it sky high, we invite the possibility that it can fall into a pit. We end up on an endless treadmill, trying to prove ourselves worthy over and over again. Those with exceptional talent or who live in the spotlight, or both, may have the biggest challenges of all.

Escaping the self esteem trap

There are no magical solutions to this dilemma. Many factors come into play - individual, familiar, cultural, and physical. Here is some food for thought, however, that may help guide us out of the trap.

1. Do your best and be your own judge. The basketball coach with the most winnings in history, John Wooden, once told me the following: You never heard me mention "winning." I taught that you had to judge yourself. If you made the effort and preparation, the score doesn't matter! What matters is if you've made that effort.

Moral of the story: Do your best and let the chips fall where they may.

2. Don't buy in. Materialism, status, prestige, keeping up with the Joneses. Amazing how we buy in and get on this treadmill, as if it were true that material success leads to happiness. Don't buy in! What is your passion? Would you not be most fulfilled if you were living it, regardless of the material rewards or social recognition?

3. Contact the present. More than any other method of self-help, contacting the present brings with it a viable source of healing. Why? Because the present moment does not allow for future greatness, past failures or imagination. In the present, we are merely "here."

4. Ask yourself whom you are trying to please. Whose expectations are you trying to fulfill? Many of us have a very hard time moving beyond our parents' expectations, even later in life. What do you really want? What is your purpose beyond what others want or expect?

5. Align your expectations with your abilities. This is a tough one to assess, especially these days, with so many people out there claiming "you can do anything." The truth is, you can do much in the areas of life where your natural talents lie. And you do have limits, even with your natural gifts. Only you can know what those limits are and what to expect from yourself. Hold high expectations. Don't expect the impossible. Know when to be satisfied with your level of success. Don't let anyone else make the call.

Admittedly, all of this sounds a bit trite in the wake of a tragedy such as the death of Whitney Houston. Most of us will never really understand what lead her down the path of self-destruction. We just wish our love for her music were enough to keep her here.

About the author:
Watch the free video The AHA! Process: An End to Self-Sabotage and discover the lost keys to personal transformation and emotional well-being that have been suppressed by mainstream mental health for decades.

The information in this video has been called the missing link in mental health and personal development. In a world full of shallow, quick-fix techniques, second rate psychology and pharmaceutical takeovers, real solutions have become nearly impossible to find. Click here to watch the presentation that will turn your world upside down.

Mike Bundrant is co-founder of the iNLP Center and host of Mental Health Exposed, a Natural News Radio program.

Follow Mike on Facebook for daily personal development tips.

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