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This time last year, Emily Maynard (and everyone in America) was falling for sweet-faced Jef Holm on The Bachelorette Season 8. Just twelve months after proposing to Emily in Curacao, Jef is once again single — and working on getting back to normal life after a year of tabloid covers, cheating rumors, and a rumored string of flings. Speaking exclusively with Wetpaint Entertainment at the Chris4Life fundraiser in Los Angeles on April 5, 2013, Jef revealed what’s important to him as he enters the next chapter of his life.

Are you falling back into normal life?
Absolutely, yeah. Life is very much normal for me right now. I'm at home in Salt Lake City, but I travel around a lot for business. And I'm just trying to stay grounded with work and hanging out with my friends and my family and hanging out with people that I trust that I'm really close with. And I'm having a great time. Life is so fun right now. There's so many great opportunities that are happening right now, and this is one of them. Chris4Life, this Charity is awesome. That's what I do. I focus on the things that help people and promote good causes and stuff. So I'm all about that. Any time I can get involved and help.

Credit: Splash News

Do people still approach you on the street? You are sort of a public figure...
Yeah, there's a lot of people that come up to me and they'll say, ‘Jef from from The Bachelorette,’ or they know me as Jef with one F or whatever. But I love what I do. I do business, and I try to just stay as grounded as I can. I have a great time doing what I do. I love it.

Are you looking for a normal girl?
I'm looking for a normal girl, absolutely. I love normal girls, too. I love girls that I connect with, and I want to find a girl that's my best friend, and that I have the best time with, and we can do anything together. And together, we just become best friends. That's the key for me.

What did you learn from this very public experience?
What did I learn? I learned a bunch. I learned a lot about myself. I learned a lot about the things that I want in a relationship, things that are really important to me, and I think I grew up a lot.

What’s important?
What's important to me is just kind of what I said before — someone who I connect with, really. Someone who is grounded. Somebody that wants a family with me and that's on board with kind of the same things that I want.