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Arfath Saleem’s “To be a Legend.”

August 23, 2015

Speech giver: Arfath Saleem.

Organization: Toastmasters.org (International) at TM International Conference: August 13-16, 2015.

Venue: Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas, U.S.A.

Purpose of this post (Acronym: R O S E):

1. To Retain this valuable information for posterity.
2. To Offer inspiration to people.
3. To Share the wisdom gleaned from motivational and inspirational speech givers at such events.
4. To Effect positive changes in the world.
This speech was done by Arfath Saleem and it is called “To be a legend.” during the just completed International Toastmasters Conference in Las Vegas, U.S.A.

Here it is as best as I can recall….

Arfath Saleem’s “To be a legend.”

Just three words…That’s all it takes….
Arfath fell in love 15 years ago with his math teacher. He had a gambling problem…at a tender age and became the school’s so-called ‘favourite’ student. Well, not exactly….

They kept him back since he was too busy gambling, not studying. His mother became very concerned and she introduced him to a student tutor named Samantha. Samantha said: “I’ll help you…” From that day those three words changed his life. Samantha devoted 15 hours per week to help him study. She made him feel smart! Result: he aced all is subjects!
In the process she had changed who he was…he said, she was his jackpot and quickly realized she was the type of person having the stuff legends were made of…Samantha became his hero.
Some time later Aunt Jenny came to him with the same problem – her son was having difficulties in school. ….Arfath, all grown up, now himself tutored school subjects. He ran to her and spoke the same three words that Samantha had spoken to him many years back…the same three words that changed his life…I’ll help you, he said. He met her son for only 15 minutes every week and with that he was able to score 93 on his math paper.
Ms. Samantha had become legendary enabling Arfath to be a conduit to help others. Like Dr. Ralph Smedley who first offered help to those who had difficulties standing up and giving speeches creating Toastmasters in the process.
Isn’t that in fact, what legends do? You just need three words to be a legend, not a special degree….I’ll help you!

Nilesh Shreedhar.

https://www.facebook.com/arfath.saleem?fref=ts

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Jeffley’s “Dial it Up!” (to Life).

August 21, 2015

Speech giver: James Jeffley

Organization: Toastmasters.org (International) at TM International Conference: August 13-16, 2015.

Venue: Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas, U.S.A.

Purpose of this post (Acronym: R O S E):

  1. To Retain this valuable information for posterity.
  2. To Offer inspiration to people.
  3. To Share the wisdom gleaned from motivational and inspirational speech givers at such events.
  4. To Effect positive changes in the world.

This speech (“Up Yours!”) was given by James Jeffley, speech contest participant at Caesar’s Palace during the just completed International Toastmasters Conference in Las Vegas, U.S.A.

Dial it up. James Jeffley. Life is like a thermostat….up yours. Dial up your thermostat. Find Peace and greater consciousness. Up yourself. There are tools to dial oneself up….

On the 18th Mar 2015, he was talking to his sister who called. What’s up? Then came the cold, hard facts….dad passed….He fell to the ground….

Even as minister, sometimes he needs help too….having learned through difficult experiences the purpose of his speech was to provide some tools. He himself was able to dial himself up…refocus, centre, and rededicate himself to life, and he continues to do so today.

What does it mean – ‘to dial oneself up,’ how do we do this? Shift your state (of consciousness) when you’ve been knocked down…and remember always…to…breathe….

2015 was an incredibly difficult year. On the 08th  Jun he received a second blast of negative information…He had been happily married for 20 years, the last four, well, let’s just say, he should have seen it coming …Even then, despite the coldness, lack of intimacy and sharing, he still wondered later….if he was going to be missed, if he jumped at the edge of the pier….as his marriage fell apart completely and divorce proceedings had begun.

His bucket list is what saved him…he’d always wanted to join Toastmasters…and somehow, miraculously at this, his lowest point, the thought… “why not join Toastmasters?” entered his mind life). In Toastmasters he found an esprit de vivre, an enthusiasm, a joy and a new way of looking at life! For these very reasons, James credits Toastmasters as saving his life!

Reach out to positive people. Yes, 2015 was a bad year, with losses that were difficult to bear – no one wants to lose a close relative, especially someone as dear as a father. And to add to this, the utter breakdown of his marriage…regardless to say, there were some pretty desperate moments in James’ life in 2015.

Counting his blessings though, he had the support of good friends, like Kiran P. and he remembered to be grateful for everything in the world – he gave thanks for every breath, being able to hear, for absolutely everything…and these thoughts turned into hope and happiness…Is there something you would like to dial up? Breathe, be grateful, join in!….Life is like a thermostat….so…Up yours….!

Aditya Maheswaran’s “Scratch” , 2nd place finish at Toastmasters World Championship of Public Speaking.

August 20, 2015

Speech giver: Aditya Maheswaran

Organization: Toastmasters.org (International) at TM International Conference: August 13-16, 2015.

Venue: Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas, U.S.A.

Once again, here is my mantra – the purpose of this post (Acronym: R O S E):

  1. To Retain this valuable information for posterity.
  2. To Offer inspiration to people.
  3. To Share the wisdom gleaned from motivational and inspirational speech givers at such events.
  4. To Effect positive changes in the world.

Congratulations to Aditya Maheswaran of Mumbai, India, District 41, on finishing in second place for his speech, “Scratch.”

This speech was given by Aditya Maheswaran…..called ”Scratch”….about lessons learned after buying a new car…then going out right after with the girl who made his heart sing….

Driving with Neha, in his beloved new car, he parked it at the beach where they walked together….. He looked back – what should he see?

Aghast, he saw the Man walking at the beach scratching his….brand…. new…car with a pair of skis as he walked by! Completely neglecting Neha….he forgot about her and attended to car instead, running off, not caring about her….until much, much later. Alas, the damage was done – and not just to the car!
Depressed and at home, still thinking about it, he also hurt mom as he was still upset about the car, which was hard to get over…even saying leave me alone to his mom! The next day, with a wise mechanic’s help the car – was looking new again! Once again beautiful, sleek, and elegant…..The mechanic proffered ‘a scratch stays only as long as you don’t polish it.’ Using this wisdom, knew exactly what to do! He hugged his mom. After so much effort – realizing the errors of his ways – he persisted, and called Neha…12 times! He sincerely apologized for his behaviour saying, “I’m sorry, you are my precious!”…putting to use the significant wisdom that he had gleaned only days earlier from a mechanic!

“We Can Fix It,” Manoj Vasudevan 3rd place speech at Toastmaster’s World Championship.

August 18, 2015

Speech giver: Manoj Vasudevan.

Organization: Toastmasters.org (International) at TM International Conference: August 13-16, 2015.

Venue: Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas, U.S.A.

Purpose of this post (Acronym: R O S E):

  1. To Retain this valuable information for posterity.
  2. To Offer inspiration to people.
  3. To Share the wisdom gleaned from motivational and inspirational speech givers at such events.
  4. To Effect positive changes in the world.

This speech was given by Manoj Vasudevan, third place finisher, and it is called “We Can Fix It” during the just completed International Toastmasters Conference in Las Vegas, U.S.A.

We can fix it.

Manoj Vasudevan.

Manoj reflected one day: he was young, successful, had a nice car, BUT! He had no girl friend…He…desired someone who was… like him – he joked.

In school sometimes he got less than perfect on assignments…When he did, it upset him. One day, he asked his teacher: “What is wrong, how could I have done better…?” Teacher said no one is perfect in India. Still, it bothered him…His mom said, ‘we can fix it,’ and explained ‘no one is perfect’….

Later in life….looking for the perfect partner… his potential bride….once again, he got frustrated….and could not find a girl by himself….

He complained to his mom who said ‘we can fix it!’  as she got on the phone, calling friends and family…They found a lovely girl…and, Manoj and she, attracted to one another, got married.

Within six months they had many disagreements….many problems. So once again he went to his sage mother after much suffering and asking others who weren’t as qualified for advice….What did he have to lose? After all, in his relationship with his wife, he’d tried logic, emotion and everything else….Mom explained: You will never find a perfect partner, either on your own, or by arrangement. She compared a relationship to a bow and arrow…. At times, the bow yields to the arrow and at other times the arrow yields to the bow…. Ego only gets in way….So…How to fix relationships? Bend more, adjust.

He has now been 17 years with same wife, Sandhu…..So…Pull less, bend more…As mom said positively…we can fix it!

Nilesh Shreedhar.

https://www.facebook.com/neilshreedhar

https://www.facebook.com/manoj.vasudevan.5?fref=ts

Mohammed Qahtani’s winning Toastmasters speech on the “The Power of Words.”

August 18, 2015

  • Speech giver: Mohammed Qahtani.Organization: Toastmasters.org (International) at TM International Conference: August 13-16, 2015.Venue: Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas, U.S.A.Purpose of this post and others (Acronym: R O S E):
    1. To Retain this valuable information for posterity.
    2. To Offer inspiration to people.
    3. To Share the wisdom gleaned from motivational and inspirational speech givers at such events.
    4. To Effect positive changes in the world.

    This speech was done by Mohammed Qahtani and it is called “The Power of Words” during the just completed International Toastmasters Conference in Las Vegas, U.S.A.

    Here it is as best as I can recall….

    Diabetes vs cancer. Qahtani almost convinced us during his speech that diabetes is more common, contrary to actual facts. He was able to do this because he has convinced friends with such made up stories….said believably…. demonstrating the power of the spoken word.

    In other words….Words can destroy happiness…or someone…especially when the wrong message is given at the wrong time. Example:  Mohammed said this actually happened to him: Scenario – a stubborn child who is colouring on a wall… Yelling “are you stupid?” at the kid, wasn’t making any difference. The child wouldn’t listen…. As a matter of fact, the child drew continually on the wall…..with his face looking directly at Mohammed, almost daring him to stop him.

    Qahtani said that pride wouldn’t allow the child to stop scribbling on wall when called stupid. Next time when it recurred, he lovingly told same child....”stop….you are a big boy now, big boys don’t do that!“ The result: he never scribbled on the wall again! This time the child’s pride at being called a big boy wouldn’t let him repeat the actions!
    Power of words…the same power demonstrated, with a much worse result….
    Nasser was a friend who hero worshipped his father and got straight A’s in school…Proudly Nasser told his dad by phone…only to be rejected: his father said” I’m busy”….

    Through Qahtani’s eyes we see Nasser’s demise…from a straight ‘A’ student to one using drugs, alcohol….and eventually ending up in emergency….where he didn’t revive. 
    Qahtani: A single word could’ve saved Nasser’s life!

    Improve the world….Words can be used to spit venom or mend a broken soul…let that be our goal….to use words in the most careful, productive and positive way possible!

  • Nilesh Shreedhar.

2014 in review – NeilShreedhar’s Blog.

January 31, 2015

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 790 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 13 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Learning from Toastmasters(.org).

January 30, 2015

What did I get from Toastmasters? Nothing; did I get to meet new, interesting and exciting people? Nope! Did I get to hear workshops worth paying hundreds of dollars for in terms of life experience and know-how? Nah! Did I learn anything, or am I now able to articulate myself in a clearer and more concise to-the-point manner? Who are you kidding?! I was plenty able to artwhatulate before! Huh? I mean I could really gab in front of a crowd in a semi-coherent manner!

Those of you who actually  are Toastmasters know me as someone who has his own unique way of communicating….and so it is here….

Yes! Toastmasters does all of those things and I am very proud to be an alumni with possibility of rejoining at any time. I lead a busy life and TM has enhanced that lifestyle as I feel I bring joy to others in being able to tell my ‘motivational stories’ to them.

I told one today (to a Rogers employee) and I might just have started her on the road to hand-gliding! It’s fun to be able to add a little excitement to people’s lives and TM is a big part of being able to to that! If this isn’t a huge endorsement for TM, then I don’t really know what is: it’s sincere and from the heart, ‘cuz you know, I’ve been told ‘I wear my heart on my sleeve…..’ All the best with TM, where leaders are made – it could change your life! I mean for the better – of course! LOL.Happy Toastmasting! (Can you say that? Well, I just did, call it poetic license…).

Best regards,

https://neilshreedhar.wordpress.com

 http://neilshreedhar.wix.com/goodenergy

How to Improve Relationships – at work and at home.

January 29, 2015

Here are some useful Relationship Tips that I have gleaned from attending numerous seminars and workshops over the years….I hope you find them as useful as I do:

  1. Be sincere. There’s nothing that mends relationships better than being sincere…..
  2. Have faith. This goes hand in hand with the above. It takes time to change. The only real change is gradual. It is often so subtle that one doesn’t even realize it; until one actually sits down and reflects on journals of past days. You have grown by leaps and bounds since you were a toddler. In that time frame now do you see that?
  3. Mind the language. Often if we pay attention to language we can win our point with tact and diplomacy. Words like ‘manipulative’ are hurtful and loaded. No one wants to think of themselves that way and it creates walls around discussion. The person is still thinking about what you meant and isn’t really listening to what you say any more…what? J
  4. Listen to one another. A sure way to get on each other’s good side and improve relations is to show good reflective listening skills. So you mean…(’this’ – whatever it is). Then you follow through on whatever action is entailed on improving the relationship from your end!
  5. Assume positive intent. Nothing rankles with people worse than when you assume the worst of them. They then try even harder to meet your already low expectations! Don’t give them the chance! (This is Pepsi Co’s CEO’s advice – straight from her dad).
  6. Talk nice. Leave a person’s dignity intact. After a huge fall from grace, iIt may be the only shred he or she has left. So be gentle with one another…we’re all God’s children (and some of us have long memories!).
  7. Take ownership of your share of the problem. With a proper analysis you should be able to determine how things ended up this way….. Now you have the tools and can take ownership of your share of the problem (without beating it to death) and ensure that similar mistakes aren’t made in future. Then the road is made better for all in the process if someone is down, but not out!
  8. Remember that ‘this too shall pass.’ All of life’s mishaps are just passing phases. If this is kept in mind, true wisdom  is gained…( the “law of impermanence” – ‘anicca’ – the ‘Buddha’)

Please share this with one another – so that we are all on the same page…we live in a small global village. Nothing would make me happier than if we all got along nicely!

Thank you and best regards,

Nilesh Shreedhar.

https://neilshreedhar.wordpress.com

http://neilshreedhar.wix.com/goodenergy

Four Ways to Deal with Conflict.

June 23, 2014

This information is relevant at any time. It always makes me wonder why people think conflict is actually abnormal given the fact that even in a given household where one would expect a fair degree of homogeneity, you have different values and opinions. So then why is it so unusual to find the clashing of opinions? Yes, mishandled it can be potentially disastrous, but not more than a festering wound left completely unattended – that’s even worse….Read on to find out how this might be so….

 

Refer back to your Conflict Journal and match the five different types of conflicts with real conflicts that you have witnessed or been personally involved with.  How were these conflicts resolved?  Pick one of the conflicts that you witnessed (i.e. were not personally involved in).  How did you know it was a conflict?  If you could have acted as the mediator, role-play the steps you would have taken to help resolve the conflict.

 

What follows is a reply to a question posed during a Conflict Resolution class I attended for courses I took a while back…It is insightful and immediately practical! Good luck with it…

One of the conflicts that I witnessed is one in which the employee complains about the employer and how he doesn’t like the way the employer manages the office, in other words, he feels that things shoud be done differently. This person is fairly experienced and makes valid points, but just may lack the full perspective that comes with positions of higher authority. He also feels that he is not being listened to, or that his (in his view valid) concerns are nto being addressed, just ignored.

 

Steps that I have taken include emphasizing the positive aspects of the relationship of workiing for the employer, requesting him to take a more active role in union representation so that he doesn’t get himself in trouble with the employer, and just staying positive with him, making recommendations to attend any type of training available, such as one that was recently offered on Change Management.

 

This seems to be the way to go about dealing with these issues, according to Howard Guttman, author of The Art of Managing Conflict, and who states that, When you stop to think about it, there essentially are four ways in which the players in a conflict-laden situation can deal with it:

 

• Playing the victim: saying nothing, acting powerless, and complaining. Such behavior clearly is corrosive and often subversive. It leads to griping and sniping and tends to drive discord underground. Injured parties can sap the vitality from relation stops–whether at home or in the office–as sufferers focus inward on their unresolved issues and reach out to recruit supporters to their point of view.

• Flight: physically removing oneself from involvement. Face it; walking away or leaving is always an option. We can turn our backs on our friends, get divorced, or quit our job and head for greener pastures. How many times can we run away however? It is better to learn how to mediate conflict.

• Change oneself: Move off one’s position; shift one’s view of the other party; “let it go.” Sometimes, we can change ourselves by changing our perceptions of a situation. For example, you might try to achieve a positive outcome by altering your “story” or interpretation of another person’s behavior. Of course, being forced to modify one’s story often rankles. Moreover, what happens at those moments of truth, when all the attempts to reframe your perceptions simply do not work? The only option remaining is to confront conflict.

• Confronting: addressing the issue openly, candidly, and objectively; communicating with the other party. This approach is ideal. One executive we know uses a colorful metaphor to illustrate the concept. He likened the tendency to let disagreements fester to having a dead elephant’s head in the middle of the room. It is unsightly, disturbing, and takes up a lot of space, but no one is willing to acknowledge its presence. It distracts people from more important work. The longer the elephant head remains, the worse its effect will be. The elephant head will not get up and go by itself. Only when people admit that this distasteful object is present and needs to be dealt with will they be able to remove it and move on to more productive activity.

If you decide to end your conspiracy of silence and work out your personal or business conflict by confronting, we recommend using the Four C’s approach:

Connecting. In conflict resolution, timing and location are next to godliness. Before attempting to connect with another person–to establish a rapport that is conducive to discussing your mutual needs–always check with the individual to determine the best time and place to have a meeting. Do not forget to set the stage. Make sure you have privacy; will not be interrupted; are in a neutral, non-threatening environment; have scheduled enough time to cover all the salient points; and that both of you have had adequate opportunities to prepare for the dialogue. At work, this might mean repairing to a neutral conference room. At home, you might head for the nearest Starbucks.

Using the proper phrasing

Finding the right words to begin a potentially adversarial discussion can be difficult. We suggest using “partnering phrases,” which convey the idea that you are ready to address the issue candidly and objectively and that you are serious about resolving it. For example, “I have some concerns about the way we are making decisions relating to one another that I would like to explore with you,” or “I have an issue with your attendance. You are not keeping up with your commitment. We cannot afford to let this continue,” or “I am having some difficulties with the way you are managing the ‘so-and-so’ project. They really are going to get in the way if we fail to deal with them,” or “I am uncomfortable with your approach to performance reviews, and I want to work my concerns out with you.”

Clarifying. All the breast pounding and good intentions will not rescue a situation in which clarifying is not employed properly. Static is an agreement buster. Encourage the other party to open up about the real concerns he or she has. Describe the behaviours and the reasons you find them troubling. Choosing the right words is crucial. Try these phrases: “Let us take a minute to clarify what we hear each other saying about the way we have been making decisions,” or “It is important for me to understand where you are coming from. What do I need to know to understand what has been happening with your attendance?,” or “Regarding the assigned project, what feedback do you have for me about my contributions to the situation?,” or “I want to know what you think. What is your point of view on performance reviews?”

Confirming. This entails summing up the facts, restating the issues to ensure that nothing has been misunderstood or omitted during your discussion. Equally important is a summary of the emotional progress that has been made–the commitment to finding a mutually agreeable solution. While both parties usually are eager to move to action at this point, investing a few additional minutes in confirming will make the next step much easier.

These are especially useful confirming statements: “Here is my understanding of our differences and where we are right now on the issue of the ‘so-and-so’ project,” or “Do you have any other concerns about our performance review?,” or “I really appreciate your willingness to work through this issue with me,” or “I am optimistic that we can reach a compromise here.”

Contracting. This is the final stage in managing disagreement by interaction. It entails finding the illusive win-win solution that both parties can commit to. Let us take this example from the business world. Deborah, the project manager at a major pharmaceutical company, has authorized overtime to keep a key project on schedule. Sam, her supervisor, has just learned about this from another manager. Sam might sound something like this in confronting his subordinate: “Deborah, when you authorize overtime without telling me, you put me in a difficult situation. I am the one who is responsible for staying on budget, and if there are any cost overruns, I am the one who will have to explain them. From now on, I need you to come to me before authorizing any overtime.”

Sam is using a three-part “I” response in which there are a trio of essential components: a description of the troublesome behavior; the disclosure of your feelings about the act; and stating the effect it has on you. In other words, the focus of the message is on “I” and not the other person.

At this point, Deborah is likely to respond with an explanation of her actions, such as: “You were away for the weekend; you said you could not be reached; and I had to make the call. I figured because you did not give me your phone number, you did not want me to bother you. If you want to make decisions, I have to be able to get in touch with you.”

Now Deborah is the one asserting herself, making it clear that she, too, has needs. The negotiation should proceed, back and forth, until both Sam’s and Deborah’s needs are met. If Sam is not willing to give up his privacy by leaving a phone number, maybe he will agree to call Deborah for a daily update the next time he goes away. Or, he may decide to give Deborah more leeway, arranging for her to authorize overtime up to a certain number of hours without his approval.

Some useful contracting phrases are: “I think the whole team/family needs to be involved in budget decisions. What do you think?,” or “Having you here four 10-hour days does not work for me, but having you come in at 10 a.m. and stay until 6 p.m. would. Does that work for you?,” or “One thing we can do to move the project ahead is …” or “What would you prefer that I do differently in the future regarding the way I conduct my performance reviews?”

Managing conflict effectively is a learned behaviour. Conflict-resolution skills are not part of any high school, college, or business school curriculum. Yet, the potential for discord exists whenever we interact with others. As Pat Parenty, senior vice president and general manager of Redken, U.S.A., points out, “Expecting people to resolve their differences without giving them conflictmanagement skills is like giving a computer to someone who has never seen one before and saying, ‘Have fun using this.'” Do not count on having a good time.

 

 

Proquest. Newsweek. Aug 6, 2007. pg. 43. A Math Makeover; OMG! Actress and mathematician Danica McKellar wants girls to know that being good at numbers is cool.; [U.S. Edition Edition] Retrieved  at 12:49 pm from http://proquest.umi.com.centhsally.centenarycollege.edu:2048/pqdweb?index=0&did=1312311471&SrchMode=1&sid=1&Fmt=3&VInst=PROD&VType=PQD&RQT=309&VName=PQD&TS=1185899880&clientId=10301

 

Reference:

Guttman, Howard M., The Art of Managing Conflict. USA Today Magazine, 01617389, Jan2004, Vol. 132, Issue 2704. Retrieved at 7:45 am on August 20, 2007 from:http://web.ebscohost.com.centhsally.centenarycollege.edu:2048/pov/detail?vid=5&hid=112&sid=b02acd8a-f7d1-4c0e-afbb-686e5d4ef027%40sessionmgr109

Love Works at Work…Joel Manby

June 16, 2014

Continuing where we left off….

What is love? 4 kinds: eros; philos; storge and agape love(s) as per the Greeks.

Agape is unconditional love. How you treat each other. All relationships are about agape. Joel: why do we exclude agape?

Joel never saw this in any of the previous of the companies he worked for. It’s not being ‘soft.’ (as it is incorrectly thought).

Go to Bible. 1st Corinthians: love is patient, kind, trusting, unselfish, truthful, dedicated, forgiving…Here is a useful formula to use at your workplaces.

Be unselfish – think of self less.

Think of yourself less…EU$ + CU$ = SIF$$$ (share it forward)…

Employee unselfishness $$ + Company unselfishness $$ = Share it Forward $$ for helping employees

Undercover Boss. Video clip. Powerful. (Search for it on Google). It brought tears to people’s eyes….

Two hard working employees featured (student working 40 hours to go to school for 10 hours. 2. Man living on $20000 and supporting five kids, including two  newly adopted ones and living in a make-shift after losing his home.

Scholarship…providing aid.

Unselfish love…loyalty and passion.

Your enthusiasm will never rise to higher than your employee’s enthusiasm. (Takes years to achieve)…

Employee’s love on customers and customers love on the company. There was an immediate positive response after Undercover Boss broadcast. Culture….crisis in leadership was apparent….. So now he speaks regularly about it.

Pastor Andy: do for one; what wish for all; people come for reason. Don’t let heart shrivel.

Help someone at least….

That’s all for now…more later! It’s become a Love Works series…LOL.


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