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  • A child can never be better than what his parents think of him.

  • The person who conveys, 'I am nothing. Make me something,' may all his life have people trying to answer his hidden plea, but their answer will be in terms of, 'I am trying to make you something because you are nothing,' and, thus, the insult will be embedded in the response. It will be heard just as clearly as the attempt to help. And it will be hated.

  • And like you, I remain as always strikingly beautiful, even though nobody knows it but me.

    • M.F.K. Fisher,
    • in Norah K. Barr, Marsha Moran, Patrick Moran, eds., M.F.K. Fisher: A Life in Letters ()
  • I did not know then, as I know now, that people are prone to build a statue of the kind of person that it pleases them to be. And few people want to be forced to ask themselves, 'What if there is no me like my statue?'

  • We are all apt to believe what the world believes about us.

  • [On being told Mary, Queen of Scots, was taller than she:] Then she is too high, for I myself am neither too high nor too low.

    • Elizabeth I,
    • 1568, in Katharine Anthony, Queen Elizabeth ()
  • Miss Gavin was emancipated, or believed herself to be, which amounts to the same thing.

  • The one thing I would like to get across about my whole feeling regarding high school is how I was when I was fifteen. Gawky. Always a hem hanging down, or strap loose, or a pimple on my chin. I never knew what to do with my hair. I was a mess. And I still carry that fifteen-year-old girl around now. A piece of me still believes I'm the girl nobody dances with.

    • Nora Ephron,
    • in Ralph Keyes, Is There Life After High School? ()
  • She went over to the mirror ... glancing at herself sidelong, as women do who think they have lost their beauty; repudiating a complete reflection.

  • Although he was ambitious at this time to become a great writer, he saw himself rather as a literary figure than as a man at work.

  • Who thinks he will fail — will probably fail. Who believe that dreams are only dreams — will probably find it so. Who doubts himself — will achieve only such results as will confirm it.

  • We are told to value ourselves without feedback, but if nobody is making a pass at you or trying to take you to Bermuda, how are you supposed to feel? Confident?

  • A direct statement about yourself is considered objective only if it is negative. If it's positive, it is considered subjective. And 'objective' means it is accurate, and 'subjective' means it is conceited self-delusion.

  • Retracing the various episodes of one's life, one is disconcerted to discover that one was not as noble as one thought oneself at the time.

  • The moment you alter your perception of your self and your future, both you and your future begin to change.

  • ... undoubtedly if you think yourself a worm you soon become one.

  • When I look at myself, I am so beautiful, I scream with joy.

  • For every individual who really is exceptional there are about fifty thousand who just imagine they are — until it's too late, and they find out they aren't after all.

  • Those who believe they are ugly / objectify the rest of us.

  • ... a woman has been trained ever since she was a little girl to look in the mirror, not to see what's right, but to check what's wrong. Women are inclined to see their flaws rather than their assets.