A good long while ago, I met the most beautiful little girl in the world and became her dad. You heard about her before in my last essay.

Nicole (courtesy photo from Isaac Peterson)

Her name is Nicole and she is the daughter of a good friend. In short order, Nicole and I bonded to the point where she was asking me to be her dad. It became clear that regardless of what I might have to say about it, she was going to adopt me as her dad. She was six years old at the time, and we became very close. I’ve never had children of my own, but I know the joy of having a beautiful, wonderful daughter. Someday, maybe I’ll write more about that.

For now, I’ll just focus on one little part of that.

Nicole and I spent loads of time talking. In addition to the title of the most beautiful little girl in the world, she was also exceptionally bright. I found out that she would remember things I’d said and write them down on Post-It notes and put them on the wall as inspirational notes. I remember one she loved in particular; it was one that went something like this: “To the world you may be just one person, but to one person, you may be the world.”

Then the most beautiful girl in the world grew up to become the most beautiful woman in the world with a fantastic son who calls me, Grampa Isaac. To me, Nicole has been the whole world. She tells me the things I told her helped shape her as a person growing up and profoundly affected the way she views the world. Recently she has reminded me that in my current disabled state, there is one ability I’ve not lost: the ability to positively impact people’s lives.

With that in mind, I thought I’d share some of the kinds of things I’d share with little Nicole. Following is a collection of quotes I gathered from around the internet. The unifying theme of these quotes comes down to this: “You have what it takes and as long as you believe in yourself, you are capable of more than you know.”

Here are the quotes:

“Your mind is your greatest power. use it well.” Aneta Cruz

“The mind is everything. What you think you become.” Buddha

“When you become the master of your mind, you are master of everything.” Swami Satchidananda

“Whatever we plant in our subconscious mind and nourish with repetition and emotion will one day become a reality.” Earl Nightingale

“You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.” Marcus Aurelius

“Our life is the creation of our mind.” Buddha

“We are what we believe we are.” Anonymous

“Whatever you hold in your mind will tend to occur in your life.” Anonymous

“You can’t do anything that you can’t picture yourself doing. Once you make the picturing process conscious and deliberate, you begin to create the self you want to be.” Anonymous

“It all begins and ends in your mind. What you give power to, has power over you, if you allow it.” Leon Brown

“Focused mind power is one of the strongest forces on earth.” Mark Victor Hansen

“A person’s mind is so powerful. We can invent, create, experience, and destroy things with thoughts alone.” Anonymous

“The only thing greater than the power of the mind is the courage of the heart.” John Nash

“Whoever is strong in mind and spirit will have power over them.” Fyodor Dostoevsky

“The body achieves what the mind believes.” Anonymous

“Every thought we think is creating our future.” Louise Hay

“You must learn a new way to think before you can master a new way to be.” Marianne Williamson

“Our greatest battles are those with our own mind.” Anonymous

“Use your imagination and awaken your mind to the limitless possibilities that exist for you.” ATGW

And here are some of the things that I told Nicole, and they are directly quotes from me.

She was a very curious child; I would tell her these kinds of things.

“Don’t be afraid of having your own thoughts and opinions. Just do everything you can to make sure you’re right.”

“When you know you are right, stand your ground. But if you find out you are wrong, admit it and move on.”

“If you have a question about something. Question everybody, even me.”

“When you ask an honest question, you have the right to expect an honest answer, and you have the right to question whatever answers you get.”

“When you’re older, a lot of guys will think that because you’re beautiful, you must not be very smart. Never let a man tell you that. A man like that is probably one that’s afraid he’s not as smart as you.” and “Never let a man convince you that his wants or needs are more important than yours.”

“Never let anyone convince you that girls can’t be good at math or science.”

“Don’t get too concerned about most things yet–enjoy your childhood while you’re still a child. But never be afraid to try new things, and never lose sight of the sense of wonder of things you feel right now when you run across something new.”

“Don’t ever be afraid to keep learning. There is an awful lot to know, and if you do it right, you will never run out of things to learn about.”

“Always follow your dream–unless it’s the dream where you are out in public and forgot to get dressed first.” (She loved that one).

Enough for now. But I hope at least one of these thoughts is one that you will post on your wall for inspiration, or even better, memorize and internalize. And maybe something you will want to share with a beautiful little girl, too.

Isaac Peterson performing. (courtesy photo).

Isaac Peterson grew up on an Air Force base near Cheyenne, Wyoming. After graduating from the University of Wyoming, he embarked on a career as an award-winning investigative journalist and as a semi-professional musician in the Twin Cities, the place he called home on and off for 35 years. He also doesn’t mind it at all if someone offers to pick up his restaurant tab. Peterson also welcomes reader comments. Email him at isaac3rd@gmail.com.


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