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    Awesome Karthik, thanks for the resources 🤩☑️

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      Cheers Aryan!

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      We built Tangle to give remote workers back casual chat - which is what falls between the cracks of Zoom and Slack. In the office, conversations are fleeting rather than persistent. You can ask a stupid question and it'll die off, or heckle someone about their sports team when the mood is right. You also process ideas in sequence, and bring people in as needed. Probably the coolest part about Tangle is that you start and end conversations verbally (e.g. "Hey Karthik, you got a second?" ; "Talk to you later"), so you're using that natural barge-in, which is so much more comfortable for both parties than a notification or a 'ping'. Just to be clear, we're using speech/intent AI to channel conversations in real time, so that remote teams can operate like they're next to each other.

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        Sounds quite cool, Will. Just curious - how comfortable are customers with the fact that Tangle has to process conversations to be able to channel them efficiently?

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          They can still click-to-talk, but they tend to use the verbal feature once they get the hang of it! 

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            Sounds about right :)

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        There are a lot of issues with Slack, at its best it can be a great tool bringing a real sense of teamwork, but misuse of Slack is rampant and it does little to encourage 'good' use.

        Some of the worst examples I can think of....
        i) Large org 400+ people 'general' chat channels. No purpose, low level activity, but the occasional important, sometimes urgent message.

        ii) Secret DM group chat overload, everything is communicated  in secret adhoc groups that forget half the team and make the public channels a wasteland.

        iii) DM:  "hi!" ..... 

        iv) General massive overuse of individual DMs, being chatted by 10 people simultaneously who all think you are just talking to them.

        Slack I think almost works better for none work orgs, where nothing is super important and no-one is really waiting for an answer from any one individual.

        It also seems to work okay for small orgs of less than 15 people.

        The days before instant messaging when we did everything on a Forum feel like they were better.

         

         

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          Hmm, quite a fair judgement. At Flexiple, we are still at the size threshold: 15-20 people. So, haven't experienced the serious downsides yet.

          How do you think people should solve this? Forums seems to lack a certain sense of personalisation. 

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            I think you've got to split groups and and have a 'stack' of tools for the different group sizes. At 15-20 people you've likely already hit the 'judas number' where many people start feeling like they aren't really central to the group.
            https://wiki.p2pfoundation.net/Group_Thresholds

            Below 10 people I like the virtual office type setups, unstructured text, audio or video chat. Maybe with office hours

            Participatory' groups max out around 60 people, which I think is a good max size for a working group forum. People shouldn't expect to participate in more than 2 or maybe 3 of these.

            Then to communicate with larger groups you want planned broadcasts possibly with moderated questions.

             

             

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              Right - managing a stack of tools is, I think, an aspect of friction for me. Asking people to jump tools by context is quite tricky.

              I do see early signs of conversations becoming a bit more complex on Slack. We have currently solved that by using specific channels that have a sub-group, so that all conversations are always relevant to the channel it is posted on.

              But I can see that fracturing as well, as we grow bigger.

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          @Karthik - I've been using Slack for several years now. I started using it; because it was cool.

          Slack replaced Skype for our team. However, in my opinion; it's not at all a productivity booster. In fact, it affects team's productivity. 

          Slack is designed to give you a FOMO. If you don't check messages every few minutes; you'll lose an important message. At work; no one needs updates that frequently; unless you are brainstorming or discussing something. 

          My second big issue with Slack is that it doesn't give you a good UI for having 'threads'. IMHO, a structured discussion (like this one on Remote Clan) gives you a clear idea of what's being discussed and what points are being made. People too refrain from posting junk; when they are a part of an important discussion.

          Chats are okay; but only if they are time-limited like a meeting. A constant feed of updates only gives you headaches. 😕

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            Totally agree - I think the problem with Slack is that it’s being used outside what it was ever supposed to. People have project management chats, announcements, etc. too within Slack. This causes quite a bit of disarray.

            Given remote working has such a bright future, I wonder what the evolution of communication is going to be like.

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              I think it’ll be audio/video + threaded discussions - mostly in the form of old forums. Knowledge has to be organized; and it can’t be in the form of constant feed of updates.

              For example, if we’re to discuss something important related to a client or a project; it needs to reside in a separate discussion; and definitely not within a chat. I can then search for it by topic; and even bookmark it for reference.

              The big pain we experience with Slack is that if we want to refer to a specific discussion or solution; it’s impossible to do so because it got lost in the chat. Search still is ‘keywords’ based. Slack simply shows all the messages with keywords. Which is super useless.

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                hmm, fair points and have faced those problems myself. Basically, we are suggesting documentation over conversations.

                However, I do think conversations have their place too, especially given that in a remote environment you hardly get to interact with anyone anyway.

                That's where the audio/video aspects that you have mentioned need to play a solid role. So, products which can facilitate this seamless switch in conversations and documentation would possibly solve the use case better.

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            Congrats Brendan :)

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              Hey Prerak, It is great that you are actually internalising this and trying to find solutions for it - a majority won't even approach it this way, so kudos!

              I have read about people putting out display cards on their door showcasing whether they can be interrupted or not - something like a Do Not Disturb sticker when you are in a meeting or in deep work (I will share a link to the article when I find it).

              I think it is also about maintaining a consistent schedule which will allow others to get accustomed to also. Basically, tell them that say 9am to 12pm you will be working but will come out for a period of half an hour from 12-12:30pm when you can engage with your family. 

              Of course, there is always the option of going to a co-working space for a few hours a day or a few days a week.

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                Thanks for the suggestions Karthik! I appreciate it! 

                Yeah I figured that setting a schedule would be the most helpful, and I have struggled with that since I came back here, because it definitely feels like I have a complete 180 turn. 

                Yes I think a co working space for a few hours in the day might be the best interim solution while I work on the internals conflicts but also engage peacefully with people around me! 

                 

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                  All the best! Let me know what works out the best :)

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                Hi Shahul!

                It's so funny, I was actually thinking the same when I woke up this morning. 

                I tried Clubhouse yesterday for the first time and, as a curious newbie, I kept on browsing the rooms and didn't really put much effort into one conversation. 

                My first thoughts : 

                - Experience can be a bit overwhelming (especially when you use it as I did... so I'll try to be more focused and engaged in one conversation next time)

                - Being in most of the rooms feel like listening to a Podcast, but I know that other people are listening as well, plus I have this "live show" feeling

                - I feel the same vibe as any other social media: same discussions, influencers popping out, and a lot of people teaching you how to improve your "Clubhouse" presence

                - I want to express myself, have a conversation (otherwise I'll just play a podcast). Forums feel more equitable in this sense because everyone can write something and read what the others say. We're not obliged to listen to the loudest voice or the guest star. We don't have to take the entire stage to make our voice heard.

                Why not create my own room and invite my friends? But I can do a WhatsApp Signal call. At least I won't be tempted to browse what other discussions are happening and I can be present with them. What about inviting my team? Well, it's exactly the use that we have of our Whereby video room when we have our camera switched off. We can pop in the room anytime and see who's there. 

                - Using Clubhouse to engage with users as Gumroad does. Sure, it's an easier way than getting in a Zoom event. And you can tune in any time, even if you didn't see the LinkedIn post or read the email telling about the event: just check Clubhouse and find that there is a Gumroad conversation on. But what happens when every brand comes on Clubhouse? How will we cut through the noise? 

                So my feelings are a bit mixed about Clubhouse and its potential to revolutionize. I'm very curious to hear read what others think here. 

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                  Thanks for this, Sophia. I have only followed the popular media on what the Clubhouse experience is all about. So, this is quite enlightening and aligns with what I thought some of the problems might be.

                  Invite-only maybe sorts the problem around the quality of conversations. But how the conversations will be more inclusive is yet to be seen. Otherwise, as you say, it might just become a more fancy podcast.

                  Any thoughts on how you would try to express yourself in the next conversation you want to be part of?

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                    For general conversations? I don't know yet...

                    But I found a practical use case for Clubhouse that solves a huge and unanswered problem: practicing foreign languages. 

                    I've been in this field (instructing/learning languages) for over a decade and the ability to practice with someone else without the friction of going to a polyglot café or setting up a tandem is one of the major problems that keep people not practicing and improving their language skills.

                    I think the fact that is only audio can reduce the stress of people that are shy and don't like to feel exposed when they struggle with a language. 

                    I don't know how you can create easily breakout rooms from a discussion room in Clubhouse, but if so, I have tons of ideas on how to facilitate language practicing sessions. 

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                      Hmm, that's a specific use case I hadn't thought of.

                      I was thinking of it from a social media platform perspective where today I get to participate in text conversations when I want to, but in an audio conversation, I wouldn't know when to jump in and also if I have lost any context if I join in a bit late & so on.

                      So, was interested to know how Clubhouse tackles such natural drawbacks.

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                        I definitely agree. If you join late, it gets difficult to catch up with what has been said and run the risk of repeating or not making the conversation go forward. Maybe a transcript feature that highlights the main points would help? 

                         

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                    Great points Sophia. I haven't used the app as much but from what I understand it seems to be a fusion of an events platform and a social network. So questioning on why you should be using Clubhouse vs say Zoom, Whereby or a podcast platform is well placed, just that Clubhouse seems to be aiming to combine all of those experiences.

                    To be honest though, I was quite lost on what I should be doing on the app when I joined. As you said, I am using other platforms already to cover all use-cases & don't have much complaints around it. Maybe I will explore it a little more and reshare my experience.

                    Also, I believe the point of having only one person speak, asking others to request to speak & of course the invite-only conditions is to filter the quality of conversations on the platform from the word go. For networks like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, content moderation of any form has always been an after-thought. So I feel that's going to positively impact the app in the future.

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                      You're right, Hrishikesh, they did a good job of thinking about moderation from the beginning (though, I'm not so sure that it was for moderation or to create an exclusivity feeling that urges a lot of people to seek an invite, maybe both).

                      Do you think the invite-only process will be effective much longer? 

                      I'm not sure about that. Also, I can invite whoever I want. So if a troll comes in, he/she invites all his/her troll friends.

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                        True, I think they will still need to moderate/regulate content but the problem would hopefully at a much smaller magnitude compared to the ones we see right now. They also have a number-verification process, right? (I don't remember exactly if I entered my phone number when I signed up). So that's an additional verification.

                        Also, as you said, all of this is still possible when there a couple of million users but what happens when they want to reach a billion users & whether they will relax these restrictions.

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                      Great points Sophia! 

                      I agree with a few of your points! 

                      I just joined Clubhouse a couple of days agao (thanks to one of my friend accepting my invite):

                      - I was quite overwhelmed by the UI. Definitely does feel quite similar to other social media platforms.

                      - Unavailability to Android users and being invite only is definitely quite restricting. I am not sure how it can replace Zoom entirely, especially with so many other features that Zoom/ MS Teams/ Google Meet video calls offer, screen share as one of the most used features of these calls. 

                      - While being audio only maybe a sigh of relief for people who stress out on video calls, I believe Clubhouse at best can be a replacement for Happy hour/ Team Bonding meetings where people can be their true selves! 
                      Audio has it's own charm when its come to increase personal connections.

                       

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                        I agree with you with the charm of audio! 

                        I've been back to clubhouse since my last post and my thoughts have evolved a bit, though I still don't see its use case for team's communication: 

                        - It is indeed easier to join a talk from someone you want to learn from, than joining a webinar (no need to wonder whether your camera should be on and no need to turn on the computer for people that don't have the zoom app)

                        - it's much easier to express yourself in a room that has less than 15 people. Moderators actually invite you to. I also found that the discussions I joined in small rooms were deeper. 

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                      I wonder how different this is from Deel

                       

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                        I think it is quite similar and in fact, even https://remote.com/ is in the same category.

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                        I haven't tried any other place other than home yet but suspect that co working spaces might be equally good or better.

                        Public spaces such as coffee shops etc. would be my absolute last choice.

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                          Congrats guys!

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                            Hmm, great points. While we try to keep documenting all long-term things in some permanent documentation tool (Slite/Notion), having unlimited messages would certainly be very helpful.

                            Maybe we should try Discord soon and consider moving - thanks for the motivation :)

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                              And they say crypto is crazy 😉

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                                hahaha

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                                I saw this... so crazy! Apparently, they want to do the same with stocks such as AMC, Nokia, and Blackberry.

                                Not sure how long the prices are going to remain this high because if the company wasn't doing well, prices going up aren't enough to keep them up.

                                To be honest, I worry about this kind of thing... people have been known to take drastic measures upon suddenly losing a lot less money in the market. I worry everything nowadays turns into a game/meme/fun/trend with no regard for consequences when people's real lives and lifelong work are at stake 🤔

                                The fact that Elon Musk was involved and, from what I've read, kind of joking about it... I dunno. Doesn't show much seriousness on his part either. He should take into account it could be happening to him tomorrow.

                                However, this shows how vulnerable the economy and the stock market really are. Curious and concerned about where this goes.

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                                  Well said Alda :)

                                  Indeed, they have already started moving the prices of those stocks.

                                  Not sure how long the prices are going to remain this high because if the company wasn't doing well, prices going up aren't enough to keep them up.

                                  Fair point, but stock markets can sustain irrational prices for fairly long periods of time. The entire premise behind prices being at the point which the company deserves requires the pricing to be rational and humans are rarely completely rational :P.

                                  So, GameStop's performance is going to be totally irrelevant. I think it all boils down to how many people join together to "teach the hedge funds a lesson".

                                   

                                  I worry everything nowadays turns into a game/meme/fun/trend with no regard for consequences when people's real lives and lifelong work are at stake 🤔

                                  To be fair, I think that's exactly the point that the subreddit investors are trying to make. They believe that hedge funds don't treat companies like there are actual people's lives that depend on it and instead play around with numbers like games.

                                  This is their way of getting back at them. So, while I don't want to say that I side with them, I get where they are coming from.

                                   

                                  However, this shows how vulnerable the economy and the stock market is

                                  The stock market in that sense has always been quite vulnerable. It is just that it is usually manipulated by large funds. Now, it has been a bit of democratised by apps like Robinhood that make it easier for even individual investors to show their might.

                                  What do you think?

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                                    Agree, Karthik. Apps such as Robinhood has gamified investing, changing the dynamics of stock trading. It has transformed investing into an online social activity making it simple and fun to wage on stocks. This event shows how volatile the market can be when more than 3m people act in a coordinated manner,

                                     

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                                      I didn't know much about the rationale behind it but it does make sense - the funds themselves' speculative behavior has indeed ruined many people's lives, thanks for noting that. I just don't know if I think everyone (from the forums) who participated had this in mind - I got a feeling many might have joined in just for the "fun".

                                      And I agree with what you said about the irrational prices sometimes lasting a long time - I guess my point was coming from long-term thinking when it comes to investing, which is my (still very modest) profile. But to be honest, I have to admit reading that news yesterday did make me cringe about not knowing about it sooner and not joining in the fun 🤭

                                      As for democratization of the stock market, I totally support it and I think there's no escaping this - in all areas actually. At the same time, I worry because since last year I've been seeing a lot of people joining the stock market (in Brazil the number of investors almost doubled last year) not having the slightest idea of what they're doing because of apps and influencers who've decided they are traders and who promise easy cash. 

                                       

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                                        Very true. I do think that people are having fun, but I do sense an underlying purpose in it and I think that's what has brought so many people to really drive the point.

                                        Haha, it is all a little bit crazy and I think it is better that you are part of the audience as you can now enjoy it without any worries :P.

                                        Hmm, well said. It is always going to be hard to balance the act of ensuring inclusion while educating all involved. I am not an expert in this but, surely seems like a really tough problem to solve.

                                        Even in India, some stocks are clearly noticeable in the amount of randomness in its pricing. Waiting patiently in the long-term was also not making much of a difference, so I eventually tapped out agreeing that it wasn't for me :P

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                                      True, I was following the updates on Twitter & Reddit and things seem to changing almost in real-time 😅 They have already started buying all the other stocks as well I think - the prices seem to have gone up.

                                      For the long-term consequence, we will have to see how it unfolds. But it seems there's a lot more drama yet to unfold.

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                                        Yeah, I think this is just the tip of the iceberg!

                                        I tried not looking at stocks' and ETFs prices - my strategy is to look at them as little as possible until it's time to invest - but I had to cheat and look 😅

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                                      What are the general feelings on 4-day work weeks here on RC? 🌡

                                      I'm a big believer in results > time spent, meaning if you can deliver on agreed upon objectives within the allotted time period, then how you spend that time is not relevant to anyone else. However, I do think this is a mindset that's not necessarily inherent in many people which may cause friction in more traditional companies re: expectations, culture, resources, etc. The bigger issue here, in my opinion, at least for corporate/knowledge work, is, does this mean we need to reconsider how companies and people view compensation, incentives, and people's general relationships with their employers?

                                      Having said that, in my limited experience (~3 years total in Japan), Japanese corporates and employees, as a major generalization, do have the work culture and ethic to make this work overall. Not as sure how applicable it can be, at least as it's described in the brief article, in Western countries though... 🤔

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                                        Hmm, I have to agree that in my experience of working in India and London, generally companies don't have the capability to adapt to such a shift. Having said that, I think it will take a few progressive companies to start the movement.

                                        Personally, I do think a lot of our concepts of working are dated and one of them is the structure of our work week.

                                        But even I don't have the mindset to work very effectively in such a new structure. I do think my mind creates an artificial urgency about things and having to wait for 3 days to get things moving might make me a bit restless.

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                                          Having a family, I do actively try to limit time spent working on the weekends. As such, trying to deal with a three-day weekend that's enforced like a three-day weekend, would definitely cause me some mental stress when thinking about my general to-do list 😅

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                                            haha, can totally imagine!

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                                        I have used Digital Ocean and Heroku for most of my projects. Of course, for static websites, we have used Netlify also.

                                        Digital Ocean has a good intuitive dashboard but there are some limitations to its usage too. Heroku is great for Rails+postgres projects.

                                        We stopped using AWS after the first year as the ability to set very specific configurations is not super useful for startups and also gets a bit painful to manage. We did experience downtime as a consequence and it felt like we needed to allocate some maintenance time each week.

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                                          Totally, this was quite ridiculous! Though, I wonder with smaller startups how candidates can do much vetting.

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                                            Hey Jason, such a lovely story! Congrats on setting up a great remote lifestyle and also an amazing startup :)

                                            I saw that you really liked travelling and travelled for even half the year. Of course with the pandemic that would have stopped for now. Do you see yourself travelling again once things settle down a bit or down you think having a young family would make that a bit difficult?

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                                              I definitely plan to keep traveling, as long as my son is pre-school age then we basically have all options open to us.

                                              When he's a little older I expect we will travel with the school seasons, perhaps summers in Ukraine where my wife's family is, and then back home for the rest of the year, with little weekend trips mixed in.

                                               

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                                                Super - great plan! All the best :)

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                                              😉 To save some clicks, the top 7 cities are:

                                              1. Tallinn, Estonia
                                              2. Tbilisi, Georgia
                                              3. Belgrade, Serbia
                                              4. Bali, Indonesia
                                              5. Chiang Mai, Thailand
                                              6. Berlin, Germany
                                              7. Singapore
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                                                Thank you sir :)

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                                                Wow, amazing list - each by itself sounds really nice! :)

                                                I plan to bring a little more calm to my mind by using devices less and possibly meditating more.

                                                Improve all "HR" aspects at my startup so that everyone continues to feel a close part of the team (we went fully remote just mid last year)

                                                Can't say this is a resolution because many personal items need to fall in place, but I am hoping to move to tier-2 city and away from the hustle & bustle of the crowded cities.

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                                                  Good luck with moving @Karthik! 

                                                  I'm in the same situation regarding moving to another place, but still wondering if it's a side effect from the lockdown (French cities are definitely not attractive anymore) or a real will to change and move permanently. 

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                                                    Thanks Sophia :)

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                                                  Happy New Year, everyone! 

                                                  Let's make 2021 better than 2020! 💯

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                                                    Amen!