Marie Forleo introduction


I'm Marie

You have gifts to share with the world and my job is to help you get them out there.

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You’ve got a new love and you’re totally smitten.

Day and night, it’s all you can think of. Every waking hour, you obsess about the next time you’ll get to . . . do it.

That’s right, baby. It’s your hot new business and it’s ready for action.

But here’s your passion pickle. Despite how bad you want it, you can’t go all the way. Why? You’ve got another three months working that pesky day job that’s paying your bills!

Managing transitions can be awkward and uncomfortable, to say the least.

Handled wrong, you can make mistakes that will not only harm your reputation, but also your hot, new business. Treated with tact and grace, this transition can be your training ground for major success in learning how to start a business.

In this video, watch as I walk one reader through four steps to manage this business transition like a champ.

Plus, you’ll get some high quality entertainment in the form of me singing a duet with a blast from the cartoon past. You’ll just have to watch to see what I mean.

In the comments below, tell me your #1 strategy for managing awkward transitions.

If you’re a boss who’s been through this situation, or anyone who’s managed an awkward transition in business or life, hit me with your best shot.

Just one request: no comments on my singing :).

Thank you, as always for reading and watching and keep being truly, truly, truly outrageous!


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  1. Thanks for this! I’m in the same boat as Jemma, tho I haven’t given my notice yet (I plan to do so in May 2012, giving 2 months notice). Already I’m having a hard time focusing on the “old” job when I want to be busting loose on the “new biz” so this was a good reminder about staying focused. My added challenge will be that the boss (and especially his son – its a small family owned company) are likely to be pretty angry that I’m leaving – they aren’t exactly the type to say “hey – good for you!”

    • marie

      Hey Claudia! One idea to consider: don’t expect them to be angry. Expectations have a way of shaping reality, or at the very least, coloring the way YOU enter the situation. If I were you, I’d be open to all the possibilities – much more fun that way 🙂

  2. Great advice Marie. It can be really difficult when you hand in your notice + go for what you want, because those that you’re leaving can take it personally. It’s so important to remember that when you do face this ‘awkwardness’ that this is not because of YOU, but is merely a bi-product of the other people’s (boss/ colleagues etc) concerns/insecurities/ doubts/ fears +….wait for it…jealousy! Often, when one has the courage to take a leap of faith, there’s secret jealousy that you are moving on to potentially bigger, brighter things. All this external ‘resistance’ is just a part of your new voyage + is very common when we listen to our inner calling + go against the ‘accepted rules’ (re. safe job/ routine etc). People often feel threatened as it makes them question why they’re doing what they’re doing. Finish of your job with dignity + as Marie says, focus all of your precious energy on your business + bigger vision, this is where your true success lies. Beth xx

    • marie

      Thanks for weighing in Beth!

  3. This really was a helpful reminder to me as well! Although my last day has yet to be determined, it’s my plan to leave soon after the New Year and I do intend on leaving enough notice to help train my replacement.

    I guess a challenge I’m facing is this: my new business is in the exact same industry. I think as soon as my boss hears my news he’ll have a fear that I might walk away with clients of his because he never asked that I sign a noncompete agreement.

    My strategy to handle this transition: manage it all with honesty, good ethics, & professionalism. I plan on also blowing up his ego a bit in the process, filling the conversation with compliments like, “You’ve been a great mentor that’s really brought me to this place where I feel equipped to do this work in my own way. I appreciate and admire you.”

    • marie

      Hi Julia. One way to look at this is to put yourself in your boss’s shoes. How would YOU want to be treated if you had an employee leave to start a business in the same industry? That will give you some great insight. You may also want to use a non-compete with your own team.

  4. I feel thesame way as Jemma, although I am not done consolidating my business plan. I am sure that I will be quitting sooner than I thought, and I am really excited and I can’t wait to have this talk with my boss.

    • marie

      Good luck and keep us posted!

  5. Glen

    I’ve been in this situation both as a boss and a worker.

    As a boss all I wanted from the person that left was that they continued to do their job until their last day. No fake sick days. No slacking off. Just work.

    And as an employee all that was asked of me was that I continued to do my work for my boss until my last day. No fake sick days. No slacking off. Just work.

    I have done the job list and process map thing. Usually this is something I did shortly after starting my employment as a means of training myself. Write out what I was doing and get my boss to verify it was correct or not. Then continue this as I learned new tasks right up to my last day. Most job training programs are sadly lacking in how to do specific tasks.

    My advice would be to spend the next three months working as though you weren’t leaving. You can do your happy dances at home on your time off.

    Don’t gloat about the fact you are leaving with other staff who are staying. They don’t want to hear about how you are leaving “the crappy job” that some (actually lots) of them see as their career.
    And the last thing your boss wants is a mass exodus of employees because you convinced them that there is life outside their business.

    • marie

      Hey Glen! Love this “no fake sick days, no slacking off – just work.” Thanks for sharing both sides of the equation!

  6. Yes to all the action points you made. I feel bad for Jemma that she has to sit it out for 4 months!!!

    When I quit my job to start my own business a few years ago I did all the process mapping etc … but what I also did was use up all my holiday to leave earlier.

    I couldn’t handle the limbo/transition phase and explained that to my boss who understood.

    • marie

      Great to have a boss that gets it Ameena!

      • Dunno if he really understood, it was more of a compromise … I was straight up and said I couldn’t give it my all since I knew I was leaving.

        I always sucked at being an employee to be honest!!!

  7. I <3 Jem.

    • marie


  8. Sue

    Great advice and plan for those managing their transitions from “day job” to their own business. I too, have done this. One thing I did in addition to the suggestions made already was to ask to go part time first. I let my director know I was ready to pursue my own business and loved working in my day job but needed some more personal time to get the business off the ground. If you’re thinking ahead and planting the seed that you’re leaving everyone has time to get used to it while still benefiting from the situation.

    I started with a 4-day week and then went down to a 3-day week over about 2 years. This saved them money while also helping me stay focused on getting things done in my day job, as well as giving me more time to focus on my business and managing my cash flow. When the balancing act of managing my work at the day job and my own business became too stressful I knew it was time to leap and they were much more ready to let me do so.

    • marie

      Great suggestion Sue!

  9. Thanks Marie!
    It was a really hard time for me when I left my job to start my own biz, mostly because during the 4 years I was there I felt like I couldn’t talk about what I was truly passionate about or they (the company) would think I wasn’t really committed to working for them in a field that was completely unrelated. And in reality I wasn’t committed for the long term, but I was willing to work my tushy off while I was there. It got weird when I left to start my own business & all the people I’d built relationships with over the previous 4 years had no idea that I was interested in or had been training in a whole other field. It felt like I’d been lying to them all along and made for a really awkward transition.
    My advice to anyone one would be to not be afraid to share your interests and passions with your boss and coworkers so it’s not a total shock when you make your move & you’ll spend your time developing supporters along the way.
    As an employer I know that when someone was honest with me about their intentions at work I would use that to tap into their motivation source and do whatever I could to help them, even if that meant losing them in the long run.

    • So true!

      I think communication is key. A lack of communication leads to all sorts of misunderstanding, lack of truck and just doesn’t allow you to be ALL of you.

    • marie

      Great point Rachel. It’s REALLY important to nurture and encourage open communication with your team. Plus – it’s just a lot more fun to know what lights people up!

  10. I sorta just went through this. We had a talk over 6 months ago that I would leave but then I got pulled back in and since I LOVED the company, I fell back into a routine, and well my new product and new biz got the shaft from me.

    My advice…set a date! Just like if you were having a baby…set that date for “maternity leave” to do your own thang. Work inside your job with that goal in mind – getting your job all set so you can hand it off and feel really good about it is the best!

    Then stick to that date! It can be scary but DO IT!

    • p.s. We did just end the working relationship. Now comes the hard part…transitioning from working on a team to working on my own. Eek!

      • marie

        Setting a date is HUGE Sarah – for you and them. Keep us posted – I’m sure you’re gonna fly 🙂 xo

  11. Great video Marie! And Jay Z ain’t got nothin on your moves girlfriend =)

    I went through this only 2 months ago and am pleased to say I did every recommended action step. The hardest one was definitely number 4. Interestingly enough, once I communicated my leave with my boss, it became much easier to focus on the tasks at hand while working. Where as before, I was finding it increasingly difficult to focus on the actions associated with my job because I was uber frustrated with how out of allignment it felt to who I really am.

    Telling my boss about what I wanted to do meant I was being authentic and staying true to who I was, and this made me feel good. Woo! Here’s to a fabulous 2012!

    • marie

      LOL on my moves. I think Mr. Carter can really break it down when he wants to 🙂

      There is something really freeing about being honest and it opening up the ability to focus and get things done!

  12. This video came at the right time! As I transition from my admissions consulting season (second half of the year) to my relationship and lifestyle coaching season (first half of the year), I find myself feeling impatient with the last wrap-up details with the admissions consulting side (who doesn’t want to dive right into Valentine’s Day planning?!). This video reminds me to really enjoy the last of my admissions consulting clients for the season, and to set my admissions consulting business up for success in my absence for the next six months. Thanks for the video, girl! And I looooved Gem growing up!

    • marie

      Kaneisha – I REALLY have to give you credit woman for being organized enough to run these two businesses, and do it with such grace, class and professionalism. I’ve known you for a while now and I really admire your tenacity. Keep rockin woman 🙂 xoxo M

  13. Love the tips! I just finished going through this process a few months ago after a year of being part time – too long! Here are my learnings:

    When you give notice, have a plan in your mind already of what you do and don’t want. Do you want a year working part time? Or do you need to cut ties sooner. This helps you be more clear in the conversations with your boss.

    Work is work time. Like Marie talked about, be present. I really showed my boss how committed I was to the org by being present, and not working on projects/emails/photocopies for my new biz. Hard but important. People also notice.

    By the end of my year part time, I was easily able to put my leaving in context of the organizations greater good. I really believed that they deserved to have someone full time committed to them. It helped my boss for this to be reflected back to her. I then yes, like Marie mentioned, went above and beyond in finding and training my replacement, who is now super excited about my new biz venture because our training/interactions via this organization were so transparent! Win win.

    Good luck ladies!

    • marie

      Awesome Ellen!

  14. Katie

    Just one thing, know your boss and your company and their reaction to announcements that employees are departing. There are companies and bosses that require that any employee (including management up to a surprisingly high level) who’s given notice gets walked to the door, immediately, never to return. You don’t want to give 4 weeks notice if you work at such a place. Better to give your 2 weeks when you’re ready to leave, then when they walk you to the door, you’re all set, and if they make you work out your notice, it isn’t that long.

  15. Melissa

    Love it!! Your rendition of the Jem theme song was exactly what I needed this morning to shift from pre-launch overwhelm to laughing out loud & getting focused and inspired on the tasks at hand.

  16. Love this video! My number 1 way to make a smooth transition when you have outgrown
    any situation is to remember that you don’t have to make that job/ relationship/city bad to choose to move on. I think that people tend to want to make their current situation so bad in their heads that they “have” to leave…instead of just deciding to move on with a positive attitude.

  17. Mina

    Marie!! Your timing could not be more perfect and you are TRULY TRULY OUTRAGEOUS. As always, thanks for the flashback!! JEM!!!

  18. Must have my Tuesday kick-start with you Marie. Love your videos, they are fun and fabulous.

    Two months ago in November, I did the “do.” I quit my 9 to 5 job, burned my bridges and made myself finally work full-time running my own business. Working at my 9-5 job was painful for me and I had to constantly control my mutinous mind to behave itself. My manager probably kicked up her heels and did back flips in her office when I gave my notice.

    However, throughout 2011, I worked full-time and ran my internet business part-time. The holiday season was coming and I knew without a doubt that I could not have both jobs. One had to go and it wasn’t going to be my internet business.

    As the months got closer to the holidays, I start to sweat and I was getting chicken. I got more nervous and was scared to death to really have the nerve to finally leave the security and health insurance of my full-time job.

    Fortunately, my daughter recommended to me to read this book, “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill. I saw the light! Hallelujah!!!!

    That book was the final straw that gave me the steps to build COURAGE to finally quit my 9-5 and to operate my own internet business full-time. And I am loving it, loving it! And so far, I have made twice the amount of money working for myself in one month than I did in a month at that 9 to 5.

    Again thanks so much for your energy, so glad to have you help me to stay focused.

    Have a Great and Happy New Year,

  19. i quit my job thought i had enough saved up… long story short, ended up selling my guitar, amp, and a bunch of clothes on eBay to make it past the first 4 months… worth it? ABSOLUTELY.

    I see it like this… the stars are never going to magically align, at some point you have to put all fear aside and take the jump. You will have to make sacrifices yes (maybe cancel cable, eat noodles for a month, downgrade your car) but your happiness is worth it.

    If you minimalism, change your life, and take action- you can make it work!

  20. Sophia Katt

    I can think of a number of reasons that Jemma’s present company might be disappointed and angry that she’s leaving in four months, and “they love her because she’s truly outrageous” isn’t necessarily one of them.

    For example, Jemma may have been the recipient of a lot of expensive training and is leaving right as this investment is complete and is supposed to start making $$ for them. Jemma may have been kept on during layoffs because she said back then that she was really excited about her job, and other loyal employees were fired instead. Jemma’s planned departure date may coincide with the company’s big rush season, and there isn’t really enough time to get someone else up and running before that day. Etc.

    If Jemma’s new company is in the same line of business as her old one, giving the four month notice wasn’t very smart. It gives her present employer too much time to salt the available customer base with promotions, lockup deals, and quiet gossip that could hurt Jemma’s fledgling business and Jemma’s reputation. If Jemma is striking out in a new area it would be smarter to think ways that her new business can benefit her old employer, if possible, and pitch that as a way to ease any sting accompanying her departure.

  21. Great Q&A this week and some real Gems (ahem) of wisdom being shared in the comments.

    I’m going through the transition period from job to business right now. Although I haven’t formally handed in my notice, I have discussed the fact that I will be leaving before mid-year 2012 with my boss. Honesty is absolutely the way forward. That initial conversation is quite tough to start. The way I handled it was to think what concerns I would have as a boss and raised those first – impact on the team, workload, etc. If this company has been respectful enough to employ me, the least I can do is be respectful enough to be honest with them, right?

    – Razwana

  22. Love that holiday top Marie, you are sparkling 🙂

    Transitioning from homeschooling professional mom to entrepreneur has been a massive transition for my entire family that requires Superpowers.

    What creates flow is a burning desire to engage parts of me that find expression outside family, modelling wholistic life and fostering open communication.

    Juggling two seperate worlds is tricky but being fulfilled and living our LEGACY is our responsabiity alone, and like ripples in a pond uplevels and inspires us, (and others), providing we stay present to all our committments while transitioning.

    Like Marie said, it’s great practice, because these Superpowers can magnetize a magical bridge between where we are and where we are going, everytime.

  23. Yeah, my way of dealing with a transition was to quit cold-turkey. It worked for me, but honestly brought up another whole set of challenges.

    Like Wallace Wattles suggests in his book, “The Science of Getting Rich,” one must give full, committed attention to the job-at-hand in order to realize wealth and success later!


    Hi Marie,

    Just want to say thanks for the email…. Hope you are on a nice warm beach say in the South of Spain or South Beach!

    I am on holiday for now!


  25. But… I LOVE your singing!

    And that was some good advice there – thank you.

  26. The perfect example of how to NOT quit your job-

    Do NOT tape your keys to the outside of the building.

    True story.

  27. Amazeballs video as always!

    Can I just say I LOVE your singing + JEM.

    And Jay Z’s head — omg solid.

    Love Love
    Ashley Taylor

  28. Dear Marie,

    You is sick wit it!

    Thank you,

  29. O…M…G…. I TOTALLY loved GEM! I feel like no one else knows what I’m talking about LoL! I was fortunate… or not, to be laid off to move forward in my business, so I didn’t have this transition, although mine is a little different. Thank you Marie!

    • Oh, I totally know what you mean. I’m 23, too lol. I only know about Jem because I had a friend who loved girly edgy glam stuff like Jem. And she grew up in another country — when you live in other countries, they tend to show older shows instead of the newer lamer ones.

  30. Cindy

    I recently gave notice at my job – and my boss and so many others are really appreciative that I gave almost 2 months advance notice. I definitely scored points by offering to stay around for a couple of months to give them time to interview, find my replacement and train that person. (Also, my current job could be a solid source of referrals for me in my new venture, so I definitely don’t want to burn any bridges and want to leave on really good terms. )

    I think so much of making sure the transition is a good one is how you present your resignation. I planned out what I was going to say by putting myself in my boss’s shoes. Consequently, before he could even respond to the news I was leaving , I had all ready addressed what I knew would be his main concerns with my leaving and presented how I planned to help make the transition as smooth as possible for him. I made it all about taking care of him – and he responded amazingly well. He’s actuall excited for me in my new business venture – which I was VERY surprised by.

  31. Hi Marie,
    Awkward ah yea…. the boss who fired me was my HUSBAND! That’s right my own husband and it was the best firing I’ve ever had! I too was starting a new company called baronbleu, a luxury T-shirt line. I think you might be familiar with my partner Heidi Brown. We are both reading Rich Happy & Hot now. Anyway, I felt very uncomfortable around my ex-boss (husband) and I had to sit across the dinner table from him. I decided to Big Girl Up and address the topic straight on. I said “look I will make you a deal, in order for us both to get through this awkward time I will do these things, if you do this.” We made our lists and let time heal the wounds. It gave me time to focus and follow my vision of being a successful business woman. Can I send you a shirt?

  32. Marie,

    Love the video as always. Thanks for always delivery on a high energy to the point video. Jay Z

    Question: Do you feel it’s better to build a personal brand online or use a non personal business model so that you’re not attracted to the business if you want to sell it later?

    Thank Marie

  33. Marie,

    Everything in this video spoke to me…about the transition I am in now, which is separating form my husband.

    It ALL applies.

    The tricky part for me is that he doesn’t see the value of what I have to say. I am going to just write him some lists of what he needs to know and do to take care of everything I have taken care of for so long.

    He will wake up eventually. I really don’t want it to cause him stress, because that will affect our 2 girls and my 2 sons from before this marriage.

    I am going to block book my time into “new life” and “old life” focus time…”old house” and “new house” time.

    Say a prayer for me!?

    When you broke out the Jem theme song I knew this post would be for me…my kids have started watching it just lately.

    Love, N

  34. Thank you Marie, for the video and the song 😛
    I have recently started my own business, but I feel like my 9-5 day job takes up so much of my time, that sometimes squeezing in my new job is a real hassle and I am not giving it my full attention. I am looking to transition in 2012, and am super excited about this, but am a little freaked out about how to go about it, how much notice to give and of course……money. I feel like quitting my day job and giving my new career my full attention is the way to go, and I think your video has a lot of great advice. And all the other comments posted here are also extremely helpful, and its nice to see that there are many other peeps out there who are in the same situation as I am, and I am wishing you all the success in the world 🙂

  35. Nikki


    My first comment here on the blog even though I’ve been watching your videos for the last year! First off, loved the video! It couldn’t have come at a better time as I am leaving my 9-5 this Friday (didn’t want to bring in another year with them). I gave notice in October to give them ample time to find a replacement but I didn’t have enough courage to tell them that I’m leaving to start my own business. I told them that I would be going to school full-time, my boss tried to talk me out of it and even offered me more money to stay but my dream is much bigger than this job.

    I’m glad I saw this video today AND read the comments. It’s great to know that there are other women who are going/went through the same thing that I am and have a positive outlook on the future.

    Keep the videos coming! I’m hoping to attend RHHLIVE in 2012.

  36. Anitra

    Total Jem fan growing up. Thanks Marie for the guideline on how not to leave a job/transiton Misfit style!

  37. My tip is to do it excatly as you said it, Marie!

    Thats how I did it 10 monts ago! “How you do anything is how you do everyting!”

    That way you keep up your good standards and learn the most!

    Good luck!

    Love xo Nelleke

  38. Hi Marie-
    Great advice for all the reasons folks have already listed above, but also for the fact that you’re encouraging Jemma to ‘take the high road’, and create some good karma for herself by treating her soon-to-be-former employer the way SHE would like to be treated if she were in the position of having a prized employee pull stakes and move on. Actions like this bring more dignity to the workplace when all too often dignity is in short supply (I think you’d be amazed at the percentage of people who stick with an unfulfilling job about equal with the number of people who stay in unfulfilling relationships because it offers some sort of pseudo security…).
    It takes guts to step out on our own; lots of unforeseen challenges can come springing out of the woodwork. But NOTHING in life is more gratifying than the knowledge that following our heart is worth it-
    Keep up the great work, Marie!

  39. Marie! Thanks for the candid advice, I apprecaite it. I’m in the midst of a career transition and looking forward to moving from my corporate contract to my full time business. It’s an experience and a balance. I’m looking forwrad to 2012 and launching my Turn Your Inner Critic Into Your Raving Fan this year. Look forward to meeting you soon!! Sincerely, Melissa

  40. How apropro for the coming New Year, as is Jemma’s analogy of a snake shedding it’s skin. Some great comments and advice. Everything isn’t always wine and roses when giving your soon to be former employer notice, though- the last time I was in that situation, they had ice cream and cake and a send-off party for me, and then later on they stabbed me in the back.
    How many have been dismissed without notice? I know, the point is to be better than that. Have an amazing New Year!

  41. Ooh I loved GEM, this was a great little pick me up. 😉 As an employee I was usually an intern, so I had a 4 month working relationship and then both parties knew I’d be leaving. That always made it easier, and it also meant that we documented like crazy to make sure everything kept working after we interns left.

    As an employer, I can say that we can feel it when someone’s heart isn’t “in it” anymore. If you can communicate how you feel and how you think you could make the last few months better… that would change the whole situation.

  42. Thanks so much Marie – love this post 🙂
    Gem – I so believe in following dreams with all my heart and so going for the new job/business – is a BIG YES for me. I also believe that each step you take makes up your life and to really lead a life where you can be free to follow your heart, your heart needs to stay feeling light and buoyant and the best way I know for that to happen is when you always ( and in all ways – even the tough old job) do your very best. One thing that helps me to do my best when all I want to do is run is to remember – All any of us have is this moment and if we can each give it (the task or the people around us) the time it deserves rather than running off to the ‘next big thing’ – it makes it all easier and more enjoyable. Bringing joy to your life and the lives of those around you at the end of the day is what LIVING is all about.
    And that Marie is one of the reason’s I LOOOOOOOVE your posts 🙂 So thank you for really being ALIVE in every moment you share 🙂 Best of Luck to you Gem 🙂
    For me I am about to take a huge leap of faith, joy and living myself. Changing job, home and even country all in 6 weeks time to LIVE my dream. I am enjoying every second inbetween now and then and doing my best to savour all the things I have right now ….HAPPY NEW YEAR 🙂 And may 2012 see us all being the best potential of ourselves we have known so far 🙂

  43. Pam Ahern

    I have been in this situation as a boss and I have coached clients who are in this situation. I usually suggest that when you are leaving and sitting down and having that conversation with your boss – consider at them as potential mentor. This is particularly helpful if your boss is the owner of the company and you are starting your own business. Think of questions that you would ask other business owners and ask your boss those questions. It goes a long way towards creating mutual respect, not burning bridges, and learning. If your boss isn’t the owner, perhaps he/she can give you insight in another area. Great post – and Congratulations, Gemma!

  44. Brilliant Marie

    I have just gone from dumping my business to a music career, I was when I first looking at you well into business, but after 26 years of doing it to raise my children, I have decided it was never for me in the first place, I just did it to make a living, as my real passion singing and songwriting and performing was being ignored in order to support my family, my daughters. Now they have grown, I ditched the bitch business and am now living my passion. I am now Elainee and in 4 weeks have major media attention and hit top 2 in the UK country charts.

    It is my passion and now I am living it and am very happy, I had to get the rules straight, but as it is my passion it was easy. Staying calm and organized and keeping it all together while moving forward, it was easy as it is my passion, I look years younger and am very happy and content. I even have a new album coming out in the spring; it is going to be mad.

    I was really lost when I first found you, but now with your madness and lots of help, I am very together.

    Your posts mean everything to me and have helped me get my life in order, goals set, career on the rise, and totally content. Gee all I have to do now is find a man that can make me feel like that, Na I have meeeeeee.

    Google me to keep on track of the creature you help create.

    Thank you Marie for helping me realize my true passion and keeping it all together

    Recording Artist

  45. hanzy florentino

    marie! thanks for this video . this is the example of how not to quit your job 🙂

  46. Thank you for your advice, I also stopped for working for a boss and now have the relief to work for myself for serveral years. I like it so much, so thank you for this article.

  47. Beautiful way of leaving!

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