EMKWAN is a UAE based award-winning content creator and Youtuber, with over 15 million views on Youtube. He focuses on technology, reviews and vlogs.
- Who is a person that you considered a role model early in your life? How and why does this person impact your life?
For me, it’s my maternal grandfather. It’s weird because it’s only after he passed away that I realised his impact and character. The way he dealt with himself, his family, outsiders was always balanced and courteous. He had a way of being positive despite the odds and helping us to see the same too. He left an incredible legacy and I think I was moved by that more than even I expected.
- If you are in a bad mood, do you prefer to be left alone or have someone to cheer you up?
I always prefer my own space. That’s important to me and I’m realising that as I grow older I need regular space for me to feel stress-free. Of course, that’s not always easy with two young children and thousands of friends on social media.
- How do you spend your weekends? With as much downtime as I possible. Though that’s more wishful than practical.
For me, weekends are usually spent with the family and particularly with my kids.
- What’s the one thing that people always misunderstand about you?
I feel I come across a little too confident at times and perhaps a little unapproachable. Both are actually far from the truth with me.
- If you could spend a day in someone else’s shoes, whose would they be? Why?
This is tough, but for me, it would have to be a statesman I admire, like Obama or Sheikh Mohammed. Both of these men have incredible stresses and tests and understanding their mindsets and abilities to rise above those would be an incredible experience.
- What’s one thing your mother/father taught you that completely changed your life?
To work towards my strengths. Drill down on those as opposed to focusing on skills and personality traits I might not have. It’s actually a powerful lesson that many need in my opinion. The less we try and be something we’re not and more focused on what our key skills are would make us all a little happier and more excepting of ourselves.
- What’s the first career you dreamed of having as a kid?
I always wanted to be an actor. Though it wasn’t always encouraged by the community I grew up in. I’m now an actor of sorts on social media and YouTube I guess.
- What is your physical and mental well-being routine?
It’s a mess at the moment, but physically working out daily. Gym, with compound weights and swimming, helps me a great deal. As far as mental health is concerned, taking time out daily to just be by myself, think, plan, be grateful I find incredibly helpful. Prayers and positive affirmations can help considerably too.
- What is the most important characteristic that every leader should possess?
- What is your favourite quote?
ما لا يدرك كله لا يترك كله
What we cannot achieve completely, we mustn’t abandon completely (old Arab proverb)
- What’s your philosophy in life?
In the past, I always had a philosophy of sorts. A guiding thought or set of principles but I’m no longer like that. I feel as though life makes no sense looking forward but rather looking back. It’s for that reason I’m trying to live it as much as I possibly can without expectations and limited fears.
- What’s your favourite book/movie of all time and why did it speak to you so much?
I loved the gladiator. I don’t know why exactly but it was a combination of triumph over hardship and self-doubt that hit a nerve and still does. Sometimes our biggest battles are not with others but with ourselves.
- What is a relationship (whether professional or personal) deal-breaker for you?
When I am lied to – told one thing and it turns out to be something else. I much rather not know then to be lied to.