how do i learn to love myself

how do i learn to love myself

By Published On: 3. December 2023


Do you know the feeling of always being there for others, but somehow you yourself don't get enough attention? In the hustle and bustle of everyday life, we often forget how important it is to think about ourselves and give ourselves a little love. Self-love is not a luxury, but a necessity in order to live a balanced and happy life. But how can we learn to treat ourselves with love? It's not just about treating yourself to a relaxing evening every now and then. It's a profound process that starts with accepting yourself, quieting your inner critic and learning to set boundaries. In the next sections, you will learn how to build and strengthen a loving relationship with yourself through self-acceptance, self-care and much more. Get ready for a journey to more self-love that will enrich your life!

Understanding the importance of self-love

Self-love is the foundation on which our entire well-being rests. It is much more than a trend or an empty concept - it is a way of life. When we love ourselves, we not only respect ourselves, we also recognize our own worth, which is independent of external recognition or material success. In this section, we explore in more depth what it really means to love ourselves and why it is so crucial to our well-being.

Definition of self-love

What exactly do we mean by self-love? It is not to be equated with selfishness or narcissism. Rather, it is about showing yourself appreciation and kindness. Self-love is the recognition of one's own needs and our own person. It is the inner conviction that we are worthy of experiencing happiness and love.

Why self-love is fundamental to well-being

Self-love is the key to personal happiness. People who love themselves take themselves seriously and respect their own wishes and needs. This has far-reaching effects on our mental health, our decisions and how we deal with setbacks. It also influences how we interact with others. When we value ourselves, we can Build better relationshipsset healthy boundaries and are less inclined to lose ourselves in toxic relationships.

The ability to love ourselves also determines how we react to external criticism. Instead of being thrown off course by every piece of feedback, a solid foundation of self-love enables us to deal with it constructively and grow without feeling belittled. Healthy self-love also allows us to see our goals more clearly and counteracts the tendency to constantly compare ourselves with others.

It's about not only accepting yourself when everything is going well, but also supporting yourself in difficult times. This is because poor self-love can lead to low self-esteem, which in turn can promote stress, anxiety and depression. In contrast, healthy self-love helps to promote psychological resilience. It helps us to deal with challenges more flexibly and effectively.

Self-love is therefore crucial for our mental stability and influences how we shape our lives. To strengthen and nurture our own self-love, there are various methods and exercises that we can incorporate into our everyday lives. They range from changing our thought patterns to integrating specific routines into our daily routine that contribute to self-care.

It is clear that the path to self-love is a lifelong process. It requires consistency, awareness and the will to self-reflect and make changes where necessary. But the positive impact that self-love has on our lives is well worth the effort. It not only enables us to go our own way, but also to support others in their efforts to lovingly shape their own lives. In this way, self-love becomes a cycle of positivity - for ourselves and the community around us.

Taking the path of self-love is a courageous and rewarding decision. It allows us to accept and celebrate our complete and unique person. The next step on this journey is to understand how close the connection between self-acceptance and self-love really is.

The connection between self-acceptance and self-love

Self-acceptance can be seen as the benevolent acceptance of oneself in its entirety - with all strengths and weaknesses, successes and failures. It is the precursor to self-love, because how can we love ourselves if we don't even accept ourselves as we really are? This acceptance is the key that enables us to develop and nurture self-love.

The role of self-acceptance in self-love

The journey to self-love begins with self-acceptance. This means becoming aware of our personal characteristics, feelings and behaviors and accepting them without self-criticism. It is the act of coming to terms with our own imperfections and recognizing that they are part of what makes us human and unique. This promotes a healthier self-image and lays the foundation for experiencing and deepening self-love.

Self-acceptance also means taking responsibility for your own actions and the resulting consequences. It is a sign of maturity and wisdom to recognize that mistakes are part of life and to see them as an opportunity to learn. This enables us to gain more self-confidence and resilience that will carry us through difficult times.

Practical steps to promote self-acceptance

To increase self-acceptance, it is important to be honest with yourself. One method could be a personal diary in which thoughts and feelings are openly written down. Make sure you use language that is characterized by self-compassion and understanding. Another approach is meditation, in which we learn to observe our inner dialog without judging. Meditation techniques can help us to learn a more peaceful way of dealing with ourselves.

Visualization is also a powerful tool. Imagine successful situations in which you have practiced self-acceptance and feel the pride and satisfaction that comes with it. This will help you give more weight to positive experiences and recognize your true worth.

Finally, setting realistic goals and celebrating successes are essential. When we recognize our achievements, we reinforce our self-esteem and self-acceptance. Above all, it's also about taking time out to pamper yourself. The Importance of rest periods for self-acceptance and self-love should not be underestimated, because only those who take good care of themselves can also be there for others.

Self-acceptance not only strengthens our self-love, but also directly influences how we treat others. If we can accept ourselves with all our facets, we can also be more tolerant towards others. This opens the way for deeper and more enriching interpersonal relationships.

Increasing self-acceptance is a process that requires time and patience. It's important to be kind and forgiving to yourself, especially in moments of doubt or disappointment. Remember that every little bit of acceptance you show yourself brings you one step closer to loving yourself.

Engaging in self-acceptance and self-love can transform our lives in a positive way. It can help us find inner peace and a deep understanding of ourselves, which in turn is a source of strength in all aspects of life. Self-acceptance is therefore not just an act of self-love, but a life-changing practice that can lead to a more fulfilling and happier existence. By consciously taking this step, you pave the way for true self-love and for bringing out the best in yourself. Because at the end of the day, the person you see in the mirror is the one who deserves your love and appreciation the most.

Silencing the inner critic

We all know that inner voice that constantly criticizes and doubts. Sometimes it is so loud that it prevents us from loving and accepting ourselves. But it's time to silence this inner critic and have a kinder self-talk. Let's learn how to overcome the negative voices and replace them with encouragement to live a more fulfilling life.

Dealing with negative self-talk

Our inner dialogs shape how we see ourselves and directly influence our feelings and actions. Dealing with negative self-talk can be a challenge, but it is a crucial step on the path to self-love. The first thing we need to do is raise awareness. Notice when you become self-critical and question these thoughts. Is this really the truth, or an exaggerated, negative evaluation of yourself?

Start by using positive affirmations. When replacing negative thoughts with positive ones, it can be helpful to repeat specific phrases that boost your self-esteem. These could be, for example: "I am good enough", "I deserve happiness and love" or "I grow with every step I take".

It can also be useful to seek contact with people who can build you up and support you. Often, negative self-talk also reflects the negative statements of other people that we have internalized over the course of our lives. Therefore, surround yourself with people who Give positive feedback and boost your self-confidence.

Techniques to strengthen positive self-perception

A positive self-perception is essential for well-being. Daily practices such as gratitude journaling can help you focus on what you appreciate about yourself. Take time each day to write down three things you are grateful for, related to your personality or achievements.

Another effective method for taming the inner critic is meditation. Various techniques, such as mindfulness meditation, can help to calm the mind and relax the body. It's about experiencing the moment without judgment and learning to accept what is - including any thoughts and feelings that arise. Practicing mindful self-compassionis a wonderful way to increase your own self-acceptance.

Physical activity is also a powerful tool. Regular exercise releases endorphins, the so-called "happiness hormones", which can improve your mood and have a positive impact on your self-image. It doesn't have to be high-performance sport - even a walk in the fresh air can work wonders.

Last but not least, take time to reflect on your successes - no matter how small they may be. It is so easy to overlook what we have achieved, but taking time to acknowledge these successes boosts our self-esteem and helps us overcome the inner critic.

Freeing yourself from the constant negative self-talk is a process. It's not about getting rid of this inner critic completely - it can also be a motivating factor. But it is important to find a balance and, above all, not let the negative voices take over.

By learning to tame our inner critic, we open the way to more self-love and a happier life. It may be a challenge, but every step you take along the way is worth it. Self-love and a positive self-perception are powerful allies on your life's journey. Defeat the critic and discover how much power lies in a loving approach to yourself.

Setting boundaries as an act of self-love

You may have experienced it before: you say yes to something even though your inner self is screaming no. This can be a sign that it's time to set your own boundaries. Setting boundaries is a key aspect of self-love and self-care. It allows us to stay true to ourselves and protect our energy and emotional health. In this section, we'll look at why it's so important to set boundaries and how you can do this effectively to boost your self-esteem and self-love.

The importance of boundaries for self-esteem

When you know and communicate your own boundaries, you show yourself and others that you respect yourself. It means that you know what you need to feel comfortable and safe. Setting boundaries helps you to prevent overload and exhaustion and to ensure that your needs are taken seriously. The The importance of setting boundaries for your self-worth should not be underestimated, as it can significantly determine how others treat you and ultimately how you treat yourself.

Tips for setting and communicating boundaries effectively

In order to set boundaries successfully, it is important to know your own needs precisely. Listen to yourself: What do you need most at the moment? Maybe it's time alone, or maybe you need a break from social media. Whatever it is, acknowledge it and take it seriously. Only when you know your needs can you make it clear to others what is okay and what is not.

Clear communication is crucial here. When communicating your boundaries, be as specific as possible. Use 'I' messages to convey that it's about your needs and feelings. Avoid accusations and stay calm, even if this may not be easy for you. It's also okay to ask for time to think things over if you can't or don't want to respond immediately. This shows that you care about yourself and your decision making.

You should also be consistent. Stick to the boundaries you set. This can lead to friction at first, especially with people who are used to you always saying yes. But this is the only way you and those around you will learn to take your boundaries seriously. Consistency shows that you are serious about your needs and that you care about your well-being. This also includes saying no without feeling bad about it. The "no" is often a strong "yes" to yourself.

After all, it is important that you also respect the boundaries of others. In an environment where there is mutual respect, it is easier to communicate and maintain your own boundaries. Remember that setting boundaries is a dynamic process. Over time and with different people, you may need to redefine and communicate your boundaries again and again.

Setting boundaries effectively is therefore not a one-off event, but an ongoing practice. It is an essential element of self-care and therefore a crucial step on the path to more self-love. When you start to stand up for your boundaries, you will quickly realize that this not only improves your relationships, but also makes you feel more comfortable and self-determined in your life. Set and respect boundaries is ultimately an act of self-esteem, a gift to yourself that gives your life more quality and depth.

The role of self-care in self-love

Self-care is an essential part of self-love. It is the practice that allows us to nurture our body, mind and soul. It teaches us to listen to our inner needs and act accordingly. Especially in these fast-paced times, it is all the more important to establish a conscious approach to ourselves. But what exactly does self-care involve and how does it manage to strengthen our love for ourselves? Let's get to the bottom of this secret.

What is self-care and how do you practice it?

Self-care is about taking active steps to support our physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. It's about prioritizing ourselves and recognizing that we deserve to be cared for - by ourselves. But how do you put self-care into practice? It starts with small steps: getting enough sleep, a balanced diet and regular exercise are essential. But consciously taking breaks or saying no to commitments when we realize it's getting too much are also self-care activities. But it can also go deeper and involves seeking help when we need it and learning to define and communicate our boundaries.

One method of self-care is to take time each day just for yourself, without the distraction of other people, work or digital media. This "me time" can be used in a variety of ways, be it for a relaxing bath, meditation or to pursue a hobby. The important thing is that we do something during this time that fulfills us personally and recharges our inner batteries. Tips for effective self-care routines there are many, but the first step is always to give yourself permission to put them into practice.

Examples of self-care routines

Everyone is different, and so needs and preferences vary when it comes to self-care. For some, it's sport as it helps to reduce stress and improve wellbeing. Others like to let their creativity run free and lose themselves in artistic activities. Here are some examples of self-care routines:

  • Start the day with a morning routine that includes meditation or mindfulness exercises to get the day off to a relaxed start.
  • Make time for regular physical activity that you enjoy - be it yoga, dancing or a run.
  • Eat a conscious and balanced diet and enjoy doing yourself good with healthy and delicious meals.
  • Plan regular social activities with friends and family to recharge your batteries and support you.
  • Invest time in a new or old hobby that gives you pleasure and helps you to forget stress and pressure.
  • Maintain a regular sleep schedule to ensure that you always get enough rest.
  • Consciously take time out from your digital life to relax and enjoy the moment without distractions.

A popular technique for self-care is keeping a diary in which thoughts and feelings can be recorded uncensored. This helps to gain clarity about your own emotions and process any stress. Reducing stress through self-care is an essential step towards deeper self-love.

Ultimately, the most important aspect of self-care is regular practice. It is not enough to only do good for yourself sporadically. Self-care should be a permanent fixture in your life, just like work or family. It requires discipline and sometimes saying no to other commitments, but it pays off - in a deeper relationship with yourself and an increased quality of life.

Through self-care, we learn to value ourselves more and take our own needs seriously, which in turn forms the basis for true self-love. If we manage to treat ourselves well and stand up for our needs, we also radiate this inner strength and self-respect to the outside world. In this way, self-care becomes a signpost to more self-love - a path that is worth taking.

The power of gratitude and positive thinking

In a world where we constantly encounter challenges and difficulties, cultivating gratitude and positivity can be a real strength. Both are key elements on the path to self-love and can have a profoundly positive impact on your life. In this section, we look at how gratitude can change your life and how positive thinking can lead to a happier everyday life.

Gratitude as a tool for self-love

Gratitude is more than just a fleeting moment of thanks - it is an attitude that we can cultivate in everyday life to increase our well-being. Studies show that regularly practicing gratitude can lead to less stress, better sleep and more life satisfaction. It also helps you to focus on what is going well in your life instead of letting negative events get in the way.

For example, start by writing down three things you are grateful for at the end of each day. This simple exercise can strengthen your mental health and Draw more joy into life. Gratitude also opens the heart to self-love by showing us that we have valuable and beautiful things in our lives - no matter how critical we may be of ourselves at times.

But gratitude doesn't always have to be focused on the big things in life. Sometimes it's the small pleasures like a warm bath, the laughter of a friend or the feel of a new book in your hands that can have a huge impact on our attitude towards ourselves and life. Cultivating this awareness is a wonderful form of self-love and connection to our surroundings.

Methods for cultivating positivity in everyday life

Positive thinking is not the overlooking of problems or a naïve view of the world, but rather the practice of seeking and finding the best in every situation. It begins with the decision to focus on solution-oriented and hopeful thoughts instead of allowing yourself to be overwhelmed by fears and worries. A positive mindset can be a powerful engine for change and help you develop more self-love, because when you think positively, you actively shape your own reality.

Positive thinking can be trained, and one of the first steps is to pay attention to your inner voice: is it encouraging or belittling? Every time you notice yourself becoming self-critical, stop and replace the thought with a positive one. It may seem artificial at first, but over time it will become a new, healthier habit.

Another method is to actively surround yourself with positive information. Listen to inspiring podcasts, read motivational books or surround yourself with people who have a positive outlook on life. This environment acts like fertilizer for your own positive thinking and has a lasting effect on your health.

Ultimately, it's about starting the day positively and focusing on your achievements. Focus on what you have already achieved and not just on what lies ahead. Whether it's the cup of coffee you make yourself in the morning or the list of tasks you've completed - take the time to appreciate what you achieve every day.

In combination, gratitude and positive thinking are a powerful duo on your path to self-love. They not only help you to overcome life's challenges, but also promote a general feeling of contentment, which in turn can positively influence your relationships and your impact on the world. What begins as a simple exercise can develop into a way of life that enriches you and those around you.

Use the power of gratitude and positive thinking to brighten up your everyday life and take a more loving look at yourself. In this way, the journey to self-love can become a rewarding journey of discovery inwards - to a place where positivity and gratitude are already waiting for you.

The importance of forgiveness for self-love

When you embrace life with all its imperfections, you also embrace yourself. This embrace is based on the power of forgiveness. Forgiveness means letting go - of resentment, of guilt, of the burden of past mistakes. This may be easier said than done, but forgiveness is an essential step on the path to self-love. Only those who learn to forgive create space for inner peace and new possibilities. In this section, we look at why forgiveness is so important for self-love and how you can come to terms with yourself and your past through forgiveness.

Self-forgiveness as the key to emotional freedom

Self-forgiveness is an act of kindness that you can do for yourself. It is not about ignoring or undoing missteps, but accepting them as part of your human existence. It means showing yourself the same empathy and understanding that you would show a good friend. This process can be painful because it requires facing and accepting your own shortcomings.

But when you forgive yourself for your mistakes, you free yourself from the chains of the past. Methods for learning and applying forgivenessThere are many forgiveness techniques and they are an effective way to heal emotional wounds and move on. By practicing forgiveness, you strengthen your self-esteem because you show yourself that you are worthy of moving forward and being happy.

Steps to forgiveness and letting go of feelings of guilt

The act of forgiveness is a process that often takes time. One of the most important elements is acknowledging your feelings. Allow yourself to feel the emotions associated with your past actions. It's okay to feel sadness, anger or shame; accepting these emotions is an important step in eventually letting them go.

Another component is reflective consideration. What have you learned from your mistakes? How have they shaped you into the person you are today? Instead of berating yourself for your past, you can use it as an important lesson for your future growth.

Visualization exercises can also be helpful. Imagine yourself shedding the burden of the past and breathing lighter, freer. Try to imagine meeting a happier version of yourself - a version that is free of guilt.

And then, when you are ready, say it. This can be in the form of an apology to yourself or through a ritual letting go, such as writing down your feelings and symbolically burning this paper. Regaining self-confidence through the power of forgiveness may be challenging at first, but it is a life-changing step.

By practicing forgiveness, especially towards yourself, you invite more love into your life. The past cannot be changed, but your attitude towards it can determine your present and future. Give yourself the chance to move forward and embrace the self-love you deserve.

A fulfilled life is often strongly interwoven with the relationships we form and maintain. They reflect how we see and treat ourselves and are crucial to the development of our self-love. In this section, we explore how social connections affect our self-esteem and how we can recognize toxic relationships and foster healthy ones.

Influence of relationships on self-esteem

Our interactions with friends, family and colleagues contribute significantly to how we perceive ourselves. Positive and supportive social relationships can improve our Strengthen self-esteem and reinforce our belief that we are lovable and valuable. Conversely, conflict-laden or negative relationships can lead to self-doubt and damage our self-image.

People who value and respect us show us that we are important. Their feedback can help us to recognize and acknowledge our strengths. Quality is more important than quantity. A few close confidants who influence us positively and give us honest feedback are worth more than many superficial acquaintances who do not know or appreciate our true selves.

Dealing with toxic relationships and promoting healthy connections

Sometimes we need to have the courage to break away from toxic relationships that undermine our self-esteem. This decision is an act of self-love and is often the first step in making space for healthier relationships. Identifying toxic relationship patterns, such as constant criticism, disrespect or manipulative behavior, is the key to changing or freeing ourselves from them.

To foster healthy connections, it is important to practice clear communication, empathy and respect. We should be open to trusting others and showing them our true selves. Fostering connections based on mutual understanding and acceptance is a solid foundation for self-growth and the development of self-love.

We can't control how other people treat us, but we can control who we let into our lives. It is essential that we choose people who are our Nourish self-love and at the same time allow us to help shape their world in a positive way. Social relationships and self-love are closely interwoven, and by making conscious decisions we can harmonize both aspects.

Ultimately, our social relationships and the way we interact with them say a lot about our stance on self-love. By recognizing toxic patterns and focusing on healthy relationships, we invest in our self-esteem and well-being. This process is a key element in our journey to mastering the art of self-love and living a happy, fulfilled life.

Setting and achieving goals as a self-love practice

Setting and achieving goals is a powerful tool, not only for personal and professional development, but also as a practice of self-love. By setting clear goals, we can not only shape our future, but also boost our self-esteem and self-confidence. When we give ourselves permission to pursue our dreams and achieve success in the process, we honor our true potential. In this section, we will discover why goal-setting is an important aspect of self-love and how we can implement goal-setting strategies to help us move forward.

The importance of goals for personal development

Goals give us direction and meaning. They help us to focus on what we really want to achieve in life. Every goal we set and achieve is a milestone and proof of our abilities and strengths. By pursuing our goals, we learn more about ourselves, our desires, limits and possibilities. In this process of goal achievement, we learn to believe in ourselves and realize that we are capable of turning our dreams into reality.

When we consciously set goals that align with our innermost values and aspirations, we are being authentic. We commit to recognizing and pursuing our deepest desires and take responsibility for our lives. This not only increases our self-confidence, but also our self-acceptance and commitment to our personal growth. As a result, we promote our Self-confidence and satisfaction in life.

Strategies for achieving goals and motivation

Knowing what you want is the first step, but how do you achieve these goals? A tried and tested method is the SMART principle. Goals should be specific, measurable, attractive, realistic and time-bound. A specific goal is clearly defined, a measurable goal can be monitored, an attractive goal motivates us, a realistic goal is achievable and a goal with a deadline gives us a time frame.

Another strategy is to divide large goals into smaller, manageable steps. This allows us to enjoy small successes and stick with them, even if the road is sometimes rocky. Visualize your goal and regularly think about what your life will look like when you have achieved it. This creates enthusiasm and keeps motivation high.

Flexibility is also an important aspect. Sometimes we have to adapt or even change our goals if they no longer fit our lives or we have lost sight of them. By adapting flexibly, we keep ourselves open to new possibilities and learn that we are the captain of our ship. And don't forget to accept help when you need it. Support from mentors or peers can be crucial for the achievement of targets.

Last but not least, it is crucial to pay attention to our progress and reward ourselves for our achievements. This reinforces the habit of setting and pursuing goals and strengthens the feeling of self-love and self-affirmation.

Self-love goes hand in hand with the knowledge of one's own worth and confidence in one's own abilities. Achieving goals is a reflection of this self-love. It shows us that we value ourselves enough to take our dreams seriously and turn them into reality. When we set goals for ourselves and achieve them, we affirm that we are worth the love and success we experience in life. This process is a wonderful journey of self-discovery and self-esteem.

In conclusion, setting goals and pursuing them is an essential practice of self-love that helps us to grow, appreciate ourselves and shape our lives according to our own ideas. In this way, we actively take responsibility for our happiness and show ourselves that we are ready to follow our path to fulfill our dreams.

The journey of self-love is not just a passing phase or a short-term trend in our lives, but rather a constant companion that strengthens us and stands by our side in good times and bad. In order to make this journey successful, it is important not just to take one-off actions of self-love, but to develop a sustainable, long-term approach. In this way, self-love becomes an integral part of our daily routine - woven into the fabric of our everyday lives.

How to sustainably integrate self-love into everyday life

The sustainable integration of self-love into our everyday lives begins with small, consistent steps. The basis for this is the realization that self-love is a deep commitment to oneself. It is about the constant repetition of self-loving thoughts and actions. Making a conscious decision every day to treat yourself with kindness and support is a strong foundation. Fixed rituals for a happy life can help to anchor self-love in everyday life and make it a habit.

Practical approaches can be simple actions such as: taking time for yourself every day, getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, physical activity or small rewards for goals achieved. It is equally important to treat yourself with self-compassion, especially in moments of failure or disappointment. Confronting the inner critic with understanding and patience supports the long-term growth of self-love.

Ongoing practices and rituals to strengthen self-love

Ongoing self-love practices can be as varied as the people who practice them. The important thing is that they suit you and your lifestyle. Meditation and mindfulness are proven methods for cultivating a loving relationship with yourself in everyday life. They help you to experience the here and now more intensively and strengthen your connection to yourself. Keeping a gratitude diary can also be a daily practice that sharpens your focus on the positive aspects of life and contributes to an appreciative attitude towards yourself.

For many people, physical activity is also an important part of their self-love routines. This can be sport, but also relaxing forms of exercise such as yoga or walks in nature. Feeling good physically contributes significantly to mental well-being and is a way of appreciating your own body. Everyday rituals for self-lovethat include body and mind are particularly effective.

Ultimately, the art of saying 'no' is a crucial ritual in the area of self-love. It enables us to respect our own needs and not neglect them in favor of others. This requires courage and a willingness to be uncomfortable at times. But the more you practice this skill, the stronger your self-esteem and self-respect will become.

The long-term cultivation of self-love is a lifelong and enriching process. It challenges us to constantly evolve and grow. By integrating self-love into our daily lives and nurturing it through ongoing practices and rituals, we create a foundation for a fulfilling and happy life. Start today to give your self-love the priority it deserves - your future self will thank you for it.

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About the Author: Sven Emmrich

Sven Emmrich avatar
Sven is a business graduate, DEKRA-certified coach and passionate entrepreneur. As CEO of Karrierehelden, he has been writing for many years on all career topics such as job applications and job changes, money and salary negotiations, leadership skills and management issues, psychology and personality development, communication and conflict management, self-confidence and entrepreneurship, and the line between work and private life with work-life balance... or much more work-life integration. Sven has coached over 1,000 academics, professionals and executives with his team and is happy to help you too.
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