We sit down and have a conversation with Nasir Kharma, a 4th year medical student at King’s College London who is probably best known for his YouTube channel, Kharma Medic. In part one, we reflect on the development and growth of his YouTube channel, how he balances having an online presence alongside his studies as a medical student, as well as some insights into his thoughts and aspirations for the future. In part 2, we have a broader discussion on the nature of success, lifestyle design and productivity, as well as the different ways we can approach learning in all facets of life.
Nasir’s YouTube channel aims to help students get into medical school, optimise productivity, and generally provide entertainment on a consistent basis. At the time of recording he had just surpassed 600k subscribers. If you somehow haven’t watched any of his stuff, then here are links to his YouTube channel and Instagram page.
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What is Getting It?: In a Nutshell
A conversation where we explore topics both familiar and unfamiliar to us to find out what makes them interesting, so that we can expand our horizons and further our understanding of the world and people around us.
From science to lifestyle design, languages to religion, plus everything in between – anything can be interesting if exposed to you through the right lens. We hope to spark your curiosity through open-minded and thoughtful discussion, as well as a healthy dose of overthinking.
Subaan is a 4th year medical student, motion designer, and an avid rabbit hole explorer. He has keen interests in lifestyle design, technology, investing, and metabolic health. Follow him on Instagram and Twitter.
Dan is a 5th year medical student, pianist, and random fact connoisseur. He spends most of his time learning about languages, playing sports, music, and geopolitics. Follow him on Instagram and Twitter.
Note: This transcript was generated using Otter.ai. Therefore the transcript will not be 100% accurate in some parts.
Daniel Redfearn 00:00
Is there any video that you’ve made or something you’ve said in the past that you think is a mistake at this point or that you’ve sort of maybe even it’s just the nature of your content? You wish that you went down a certain rabbit hole sooner or capitalized on something? Like a missed opportunity?
Nasir Kharma 00:13
a missed opportunity. Yes, yes. Cast.
Daniel Redfearn 00:17
Oh, spill the beans.
Nasir Kharma 00:18
So missed. So much. So
Daniel Redfearn 00:23
about going on this podcast, we’re not sorry. Hello, and welcome to Getting It,
Subaan Qasim 00:28
the conversation where we try to understand life just a little bit more.
Daniel Redfearn 00:32
My name is Dan.
Subaan Qasim 00:33
And my name is Subaan.
Daniel Redfearn 00:34
And we’re both medical students based in London.
Subaan Qasim 00:37
And in this episode, we welcome Nasser chama, also known as karma medic to Getting It. In part one of this two part series, we reflect on the development and growth of his YouTube channel, how he balances having an online presence alongside his studies as a medical student, as well as some insights into his thoughts and aspirations for the future.
Daniel Redfearn 00:56
Subaan Qasim 00:57
Daniel Redfearn 00:58
how you doing today?
Subaan Qasim 01:00
I am very well, thank you. And I mean, today, we should just probably cut to the chase and skip the preamble. So I’ll just go straight into introducing our guests who is Nasir Kharma. He’s probably most well known for his pretty successful YouTube channel, Kharma Medic, which is sitting around 600, or just over 600,000 subscribers at the time of this recording in only like three ish years if I’m not mistaken. So pretty, pretty good growth overall. So
Daniel Redfearn 01:26
yeah, we came to meet karma. Or Nasir, by going we’re living in the same flat at the moment, because we’re both on the same location for our peripheral placements. So yeah, if you’ve seen any of his recent videos, I think he’s mentioned it a few times. So yeah, that’s where we are at the moment. And yeah, welcome to the podcast.
Nasir Kharma 01:45
Thank you. Thank you for that lovely intro, guys. I’m happy to be here. I’m really excited to see how this goes.
Daniel Redfearn 01:51
Yeah. And I you I remember you saying that it’s I think the first podcast you’ve been on?
Nasir Kharma 01:54
Yeah, yeah. first podcast.
Daniel Redfearn 01:56
Yeah, it says a very big honor for us. And yeah, we’ll see how it goes.
Subaan Qasim 01:59
Yeah. So in general, just to kind of start things off, can you just kind of give like your elevator pitch in terms of your like bio, who you are, where you’re from your kind of journey into YouTube and med school and just all of that in general?
Nasir Kharma 02:10
Yeah, sure. So hi, my name is Nasir. Currently 25 years old. And basically, my my story, I think, is that like, I’m quite an international person. I was born in Vancouver, and then I moved to Greece, which is why I spend almost all of my life until I was 18 years old, I went to Canada to do my undergraduate degree, studying medicine in the UK. So I feel like I’ve been able to experience a lot of different cultures, a lot of different universities, which is great. I feel like it’s something that’s like, made me who I am. And then my journey to YouTube started because I got rejected from medical school, the first time that I applied when I was in Greece applying to medical schools in the UK. And then the second round time, the second time around that I was applying, I applied to both Canada and the UK. And by then I felt like I had gamed the system, I felt like I knew exactly what people wanted for their applications, and how you could get accepted into medical school. So I said, Let me help some people out. Let me give back. And that’s how I started.
Daniel Redfearn 03:07
Okay, so when you first made the channel, it was too long was saying it was about three years ago. Is that right? I think
Nasir Kharma 03:13
Yeah. Two, two and a half, almost three years.
Daniel Redfearn 03:16
And by that point, had you started at Kings?
Nasir Kharma 03:20
No. Oh, wait, no, sorry. Yes, outsider kings. Okay, so we like a fresher, just new to the university. And it was towards the end of my first year. Okay, it’s my first year.
Daniel Redfearn 03:29
And so the initial aim of the channel, what you saw for the channel was going to be making videos, giving advice to people who sort of wanted to get in. Yeah, to med school.
Nasir Kharma 03:38
Yeah. So it started specifically with the UK. Because when I, when I wrote the UK, as an as an adult, for the second time, I walked out of that exam, I was like, I smashed it. I was like I killed this exam. Oh, and, you know, in my preparation that I did, I did three weeks of prep four hours a day. And I felt like I had studied the exam so well that I knew, like what could help other people and what people should focus on and what they shouldn’t spend so much time on. And so I want to start there. I was like, that’s the place I can start giving back on on the ukcat tips specifically.
Daniel Redfearn 04:10
And then now looking back at the growth that you’ve had, and it’s very relative, it’s been very quick. Is that fair to say? Yeah, absolutely. And I’m sure in some ways, you probably didn’t expect to grow this quickly at all, and always, always, just completely didn’t expect to be so popular and to grow successfully. At this point, now, would you say that the identity of the channel is different from when you started because obviously make a lot of different videos. Now you’ve got a bigger following. So in what way now? Would you describe your channel compared to then?
Nasir Kharma 04:39
So I think towards the beginning, I was very focused on strictly educational content. And even though at the time, like once I started getting 100 subscribers, 200 subscribers, I started getting a bit excited. And I was like, Oh, I can share more aspects of my life. But I knew that nobody would care. And I think this is something really important, like when you’re starting to build a platform when you’re like going on any social media thing. People don’t yet care about you like who you are as a person, your values, your identity, your personality, what people care about. So what people care about when you’re really small, and when you’re first growing is an exchange of value. You want to be providing some sort of value to whoever’s watching your video. Like once they watch your video, they need to have gained something, right. And I think that’s what keeps people coming back for more. At the beginning, no one’s really attached to your personality. They’re not attached to your like mannerisms, or your specific tendencies or whatever. And so over time, as I grew more and more, I started like sprinkling in more lifestyle content, more personal content, things about me who I am as a person, as opposed to giving strictly educational content. And so now I think I like rambled on from your question. But so yeah, the content has evolved to be a little bit more lifestyle things as well. So that includes Medical School vlogs, that includes me traveling, just sharing, like, things that I’m really passionate about, like coffee, for example. Very much like whatever I feel like Yeah,
Daniel Redfearn 05:55
yeah, I think I saw that in your Instagram bio. It’s like I’m
Nasir Kharma 05:58
grinding, grinding YouTube and coffee. I’m so proud of that. Like,
Daniel Redfearn 06:01
that is really, people who don’t know who you are, unless you’re on your own. your Instagram. That’s the first thing they’re gonna know about. Your coffee, your coffee, passion, I
Nasir Kharma 06:09
grind YouTube and coffee beans. Yeah.
Daniel Redfearn 06:12
And what do you think about that salon as well, having a history of you making YouTube videos as well, in the past and stuff? Do you agree about the idea of when you’re starting off, it’s about the content especially. And people not really necessarily caring who you are as a person until maybe later on when they get to know you better? Is that a fair description?
Subaan Qasim 06:30
Yes, the thing is, is that back when I was doing YouTube, it was a very different place. In terms of the way YouTube worked and stuff, so I mostly did stuff in the, like, tutorial kind of area in video editing, or visual effects and stuff. So that was the kind of niche but again, it was a, I was providing value in terms of teaching what I knew, even though I was like 13 1415 years old, I was just making videos on how to do a particular effect or video editing technique, and just share it to the world, basically, and that kind of community. And, yeah, I never really gotten to the stage where I started kind of putting my lifestyle into it. But I might kind of growth took off when I was say, when I kind of actually stopped doing YouTube, but then just because the value was providing some of the videos that just kind of shot up. So that is probably the area you need to kind of at least start off with is providing value in some way. And then once you kind of get bigger, say up to McKinnon. Also, no one really cares, what, like what you do, you can just kind of upload anything and they’ll watch it,
Nasir Kharma 07:30
you can put anything you want young people watch it, I should add a small caveat that the advice that I was saying, we have to provide value first, I think it’s very relevant in today’s day and age where a lot of areas are highly saturated. So like, like 10 years ago, like anyone making videos about their life had like huge value to it just just from entertainment value, right? If nothing else, but I think now it’s harder and harder to differentiate yourself. And so being able to provide value to people who are watching your videos is a good way to have them come back.
Daniel Redfearn 07:59
And at this point, with your following, what proportion of people who are watching a video so at the start, you’d say that people who are watching your videos, were very interested to learn from the content, you’re telling them about how to get into medical school, so I’m guessing a lot of hopefuls for medical school, for example. Now, do you have any idea of your following the proportion of people who are just interested in you as a person versus following your advice for tips for studying and things like that? Do you reckon it’s changed over time? Do you feel like a different group of people, there’s a different demand for your videos? Now, do you think
Nasir Kharma 08:30
I think the same group of people who were following me at the beginning were the same types of that group of people have stayed, but then other groups that people have been added on to that. So I believe I have no evidence of this. But I believe that the different types of videos that I upload, different subsets of my subscribers will watch. So some people are only subscribed to me for study with me videos. And then some people are only subscribed to me because they’re interested in strict education and like how to be productive and how to improve their grades. Then other people are following me just because they care about watching me and Alex here, they have a holiday in Greece. So I think that there’s like different subsets that follow me. That’s that’s my theory.
Daniel Redfearn 09:05
There’s no way you can do some statistical analysis of
Subaan Qasim 09:08
the I guess, no, I reckon you could because the analytics are pretty good these days. And you can see, like, well, you won’t be able to find out who’s who. But you can find out what what percentage of your subscribers are probably related to like, calm for certain content, in terms of like spikes with certain videos. Yeah, that actually be quite an interesting analysis to break down sometime in the future. There’s
Nasir Kharma 09:30
a lot of data, there’s a lot of data to look through. And I think if someone knows what they’re looking for, they can really pick out what’s what’s important.
Daniel Redfearn 09:37
Is there anything that’s really surprised you about looking through the data like, Wow, I didn’t realize that proportion of people. remember you telling me the countries where your views are most from stuff?
Nasir Kharma 09:44
Yeah, yeah, I think the So yeah, I think that top five countries are India and then UK, Canada, us and then I think Germany, but don’t quote me on the last one, but those four ones somewhere in the top four those ones I will keep switching between first second, third and fourth. Yeah,
Daniel Redfearn 10:02
it’s interesting that were you surprised by any of those? Or
Nasir Kharma 10:05
I was if I’m honest, I was, if I’m honest, I don’t know why I was surprised. I just assumed most people watching my videos would be applying. Were like from the UK applying to universities or from Canada applying to Canadian universities. But of course, it makes sense. There’s plenty of international students applying to UK universities for medicine.
Daniel Redfearn 10:22
And it ties into a burning question that I think I have asked you before in the kitchen. Just it’s the idea that as you get certain sort of bases of followers, I think that’s super interesting. The idea that, do you feel like there’s a pressure over time to sort of change your content and steal content in a certain way to please those people who enjoy your videos? Absolutely. There’s,
Nasir Kharma 10:45
there’s immense pressure from an analytics viewpoint from like a views and a growth viewpoint. Yeah, there’s immense pressure, because when you upload a video that doesn’t, quote, unquote, perform, as well as you want it to, or like in line with previous videos you’ve uploaded, like, you’ll really notice, like views now equal, so down, subscriber growth will slow down. And I know that talks about this all the time, but when you open the YouTube Analytics app, the very first thing that you see is what rank your most recent video is compared to the previous 10. So it will tell you your your current video is ranked at number four out of 10 or number 10 out of 10. And that 10 out of 10 feeling is like brutal. Yeah, no, like, like when I think about it logically, I’m like this really should shouldn’t affect me from a mental point of view. But it does, I’d be lying if I said it doesn’t
Daniel Redfearn 11:31
imagine that on Instagram or something toxic.
Nasir Kharma 11:34
It’s a bit unfair almost on create it is I think it’s quite harsh. And hopefully they change that soon, because it’s not very nice. But But back to what you were saying about the pressure. So yeah, like when you upload, let’s when I upload like a medical school vlog, and I get a really good reaction, it gets recommended by YouTube, sorry, it gets recommended by YouTube, and you get a lot of new viewers, new people subscribing, you get like incentive to keep creating those types of videos. And vice versa, when you make a video that maybe you really enjoyed but didn’t do so well. You get the incentivize from making that content again.
Daniel Redfearn 12:06
And then I guess if you’ve got any particular interest that you have, maybe outside of the YouTube channel, so I can imagine for me if I were in your position, and so for example, I like languages, I would almost be that would almost make me a little bit scared of bringing in new things because you don’t know how the reaction is going to be. And yeah, and that’s a tough thing about you want to stay authentic, you know, you want to be true to yourself, but then balancing that against, you know,
Nasir Kharma 12:27
that’s something really common that I’ve heard from, sorry, Subaan. So you want to hit me there? I sorry, if I interrupted No, no carry on. When I was a Yeah, that’s a common complaint that I’ve heard that, like people feel like they can’t branch out because their audience won’t like those types of videos. I think that’s really sad. It’s like, it sucks. You know, like the whole point, you’re making videos, it’s like an expression of your creativity, something that you want to do something that you’re interested in. And it would suck to sort of feel pigeon holed. In that sense.
Subaan Qasim 12:56
Do you do you see yourself pivoting out of the niche you’re currently in. So I guess you started strictly on med school, you caught that kind of stuff. And then that kind of lends itself very nicely into the productivity sphere. Because say a lot of the stuff about time management, studying a lot, and whatnot, is all kind of related to the whole productivity kind of area, and lifestyle design, that kind of stuff. And I’ve seen a lot of kind of, say med school, you know, university youtubers kind of go that way, especially once they leave University. Do you see yourself doing something like that? Because I know if I was in your position, I feel a bit awkward and been trying to make medical related videos when I’m not in med school anymore. So I guess you could meet like a doctor videos like Dana life and the doctor rather than a medical student. But I do see yourself maybe dying out of that kind of phase and going into something else outside even outside of productivity?
Nasir Kharma 13:45
That’s a good question. And like how I like to think about that is I’m happy to pivot and I’m not scared to pivot into any area of like, my life that I’m interested in, right. So if I’m interested in productivity, then I’ll make videos about productivity. Like that’s something that I think about all the time now, in my day to day life. So like making a video about it is something that like comes it comes a bit naturally. It’s like things I do anyway, I just want to put into like a presentable form. So So yeah, I’m happy to pivot into like, any area that I’m interested in. And if I’m a doctor, and I’m enjoying making videos about being a doctor, then that’s what I’m going to do find joy, make videos about traveling. And that’s what I’m going to do.
Subaan Qasim 14:24
I’m not particularly worried about it, I’m not stressed about it. Because if I don’t do that, then I’m not going to enjoy making these videos, like the amount of time and effort that goes into making a video is not worth if I’m not enjoying the process for not having fun. So I think that’s the number one thing like keep doing things I actually enjoy, but then say going back to the thing with your analytics and your video rankings and stuff. And so if you are trying to do that new thing that you’re into, but it’s just not performing, how do you think you kind of handle those emotions at that point in terms of like, should I really just continue doing this just because I want to, but it’s just, it could potentially say kill your channel in the long term or some thing, because I’ve seen that happen to some people say that, Oh, geez back in the day when they started doing other things. And then they just died off because it wasn’t what their whole subscriber base was about.
Nasir Kharma 15:10
I mean, it could happen. You know, it could happen quite easily, right? Like people are very quick to sort of jump on and off of things these days. And like one thing that’s very attractive and popular now can die out really, really quickly, without even noticing. So it could happen I’m honestly just trying to have fun while a while my channels like doing well at the time. And just go then see where it takes me. Like if a video doesn’t perform well, Yes, I will. I will be like upset about it during that day. But I just tried to put it behind me. And like, there are plenty of videos that I put out knowing full well that they’re not going to do well. Like that coffee video. When I uploaded, I knew that I was like, nobody wants to watch me talk about coffee, right? But I just happened to be interested in making a video about coffee that week.
Daniel Redfearn 15:52
So yeah, it’s just like, it depends, I see how it goes. And then that ties into the idea of the measure of success with having analytics and numbers. It can become it can be easy to get obsessed with those numbers. That’s an obvious measure of success with a channel that looking at the views that subscribers but are there any other measures of success that you based on your channel? Is it even if it’s just pride in the videos? How do you measure the success of your channel?
Subaan Qasim 16:17
Nasir Kharma 16:18
That’s good. I think first and foremost, like, a lot of the time when I’m editing a video, I’m usually really proud of the video. I’m like, Yes, like that call was really good. Or like this music sequence is great. Yeah, I like I hyped my videos up a lot in my in myself, because I’m proud of. And so I think that’s the first The most important thing. Like if it passes that test, if I’m actually really proud of what I did like that is very successful for me. Right? And then comments, comments is a great one, because it’s not it’s not viewed as smart. Subscribe. It’s not like a number. It’s some actual qualitative feedback. Yeah. And then good comments really make my day, you know, someone who notes is like an edit that I made. And they comment on how like, yes, like some, someone realized how much work and effort went into that and like someone appreciated it. And then just anyone saying, like, I find this very useful, or like DMS on Instagram emails, I get emails from people’s parents, people’s parents, like, oh, like, I’ve watched your videos to like, learn about medical school, or my son watches your videos, my daughter, whatever, like that, that is one more success. Could I ask for like, you know, somebody else finding genuine value in the content on making? Yeah, that’s, that’s the best.
Subaan Qasim 17:29
So just as a side note, my brother watched like all of your YouTube videos, basically, he said that it was probably the number one factor and actually being able to perform well, in the in the UK. I mean, like, so. Like, it
Nasir Kharma 17:40
was amazing. Like, that’s, that’s so cool. Like, if when I was studying for the MCAT, if I had watched someone’s video, and I was like, Wow, that’s so helpful. And that helped me It’s 16 in the UK, like, how amazing of a feeling is that? You know, and I think that’s the nature of your channel. I
Daniel Redfearn 17:54
think that’s a really nice, neat, that’s a really nice success to have is not just in the numbers, but also the fact that the content is useful, and it definitely helps a lot of people’s lives. And I think that’s a big reward as well. touchwood I know that you do like the keyword of just keeping good momentum. And that there’s another thing I wanted to ask on that vein. So I think it’s fair to say that in any success in life, there’s an element of fortune, whether that be timing, or a certain bit of inspiration or conversation you’ve had with someone with your channel, do you think they’re where would you say the element of Fortune lies was in the timing? Did you come into this field at a really good time? And YouTube? Or were you lucky to? Yeah, what do you think? Do you think there’s any fortune?
Nasir Kharma 18:40
Yeah, absolutely. Is the short answer to that question. Like, like luck most definitely plays a role. But I really believe in like increasing your chances of being lucky in the sense that like, if I make one video a week for, I don’t say 10 years is too long. If I make one video a week for like, three years, at some point, some number of people are bound to see that video, right. And the more content you produce, the more things you put out there, the more likely it is to somehow catch on to one platforms algorithm, or someone watches it and shares it with a friend or a family member or whatever. So I really, really, really believe in like hard work and dedication and consistency. I think that’s really, really important and anything that you do, and that increases your chances of success increase your chances of getting lucky or being lucky. Having said that, I think for example, like one of the first videos that did really well on my channel, I think it was a mixture of like, being lucky in the sense that at that time, more people were searching for medical school vlogs or exam revision tips or whatever. And then when they watched my video, they found the editing like good or they liked my personality or my talking or whatever. And those two things combined lead to success.
Subaan Qasim 19:51
What so you kind of mentioned that it was just like putting out work and then you’re kind of leveraging luck or you were in a position to be able To kind of leverage the luck at that particular time, so would you say that’s kind of the, say key to kind of unlocking that kind of momentum or just luck and innocence.
Nasir Kharma 20:11
So the thing is, like I, the week where that video started to do very well. And like, I think I can see that video went viral, it had something like 300,000 views in a month, a month and a bit, which is like, insane. And so, you know, the thing is, like, I was gonna make a video that week. Regardless, I was gonna make a video the week before and the week after, regardless of how the video performed. And so it just so happened that that video happened to like, hit different with the YouTube algorithm or connected differently with the people watching or something like that, you know. And then in terms of an end goal with the channel, you’ve got this very good momentum right now,
Daniel Redfearn 20:46
as far as I understand it is growing quick. I remember, when did you hit 100,000,
Nasir Kharma 20:52
maybe a month and a half ago,
Daniel Redfearn 20:55
and you’ve passed 600. So now on the graph on the
Subaan Qasim 20:58
time versus subscribers graph, that you’re on that kind of steep part of the graph,
Nasir Kharma 21:02
the channel is like, it’s over the lockdown period, it did some insane numbers, like things, things like I couldn’t even have dreamt off before. You know, I remember the first month where I did 1 million views in one month. I was like, Oh my god, like, how is that even possible? You know, 1 million in one month. That’s insane. And then the next month, I did 1 million in one week. And I was like, how, how is that happening? And this, this ties back to Dan, that latest conversation we had before that the bar that you’re setting for yourself never stops going up. Every time you break a new record, or you break a new something like x number of views in X number of and y number of time, that sets a new bar. And so you’re always trying to reach that bar, you’re always trying to go higher, higher, higher. And that’s like part of the stress that comes from analytics. And it’s why I try not to check it that much at all now, because it’s just like, yeah, it’s it’s a bit stressful and stressful.
Daniel Redfearn 21:55
And then in terms of, we’re saying the bar gets higher, and you expect more of yourself, compared to when the channel started. Maybe in some ways, you’re a bit of a different person now because you’re having to maybe function at a higher level, you know, maintain this channel to a good level, keep going with your med school. And naturally, it’s going to change a person in some ways. Do you notice any changes to your personality? Or in terms of your self deception? Has that changed over time? since you started the channel?
Nasir Kharma 22:23
Okay, two things. personality and self perception. personality? I really feel like I’m the same. I honestly do. I think like my friends who’ve known me for a long time are better judge of that. Because you know, sometimes you’re so close to the thing that you can’t see from the outside. But yeah, I really like to think on the exact same person. Like I’ve matured like anyone else would mature in the last three years, like I’ve grown like anyone else would grow. But yeah, I really like to think that like, my personality hasn’t changed, who I am hasn’t changed. And my self perception. You know, it’s
Subaan Qasim 22:57
Nasir Kharma 22:59
I was saying, when I read those comments, and I get these emails, I can’t relate. I can’t put myself in the shoes of the person who they’re talking about. They’re saying like karma medic, oh my god, you’ve changed my life. You’ve helped me get into med school. My son is getting through his chemotherapy. Because if you like all these types of things, and I’m like, why are they talking about like, Who is that person? I can’t put myself in the shoes. I’m like, I’m just a dude going to MIT. Yes. You know, like, genuine, this sounds really like cliche and whatever. But like, I’m yet to reach that point where I’m like, there’s this person called karma medic and a bunch of people’s eyes, who is like, super productive, and like, is always doing really well and has this very perfect happy life that people like genuinely look up to. And like, Who is this person? Like? Honestly, it’s hard to think of that as like something that exists out there.
Daniel Redfearn 23:49
So you can see this is a question I was going to I wanted to ask you from the start. And actually, when I first met you a few weeks ago, I was I was curious to know is like, um, to the internet, your karma medic. And so I was wondering, you know, when you turn on the camera, do you become karma medic? And you know, do you think when the camera was off, do you still feel like that’s you all the time? Or? Or do you feel like it’s almost an extension of your personality? If that makes sense. It’s a weird it’s an abstract sort of concept. But yeah, you know, people’s perceptions of you when they walk up to you on the street maybe if that’s happened to you know, London, they go have a photo with you. Do you feel like you have to if you’re in a certain mood, do you have to, you know, become cosmetic in the moment? And
Nasir Kharma 24:29
that’s a good question. Like, yeah, when people run into me in the street, I continue being the exact same person. However, with the caveat that I know that these people are expecting like this, this person who is karma medic this like this thing that is cosmetic, right? But all that means is that like, I mean, like the thing is, like, I was gonna say all that means is that like, I smile and I make conversation, but I will do that anyway. I would, I would have done that anyway. When I turn on the camera, I’m just like, like, if I was going to write an essay, I would sit down on my computer Sir, okay, and instead of turning on the camera, I would place my hands on the keyboard. And then I begin writing is the exact same feeling to me, you know, it’s just a continuation of whatever it is that I’m doing. It’s like it’s a project that I’m working on. It definitely doesn’t feel like a role. It doesn’t feel like a persona. And like, if you’ve seen any of my videos, like, hopefully you feel like I’m the same exact person in real life. But when I the part that I can’t relate to is this huge success, this idea of someone with 600,000 subscribers, like someone that people look up to, like, that’s when I can’t seem to put myself in the shoes of it just seems so foreign.
Daniel Redfearn 25:34
Because I think it’s interesting. You weren’t born into that, you know, you weren’t born as color medic. Yeah. Before even got into medical school, yeah. And I can call yourself cosmetic, but like,
Nasir Kharma 25:45
cringy, or like a stranger?
Daniel Redfearn 25:46
Yeah. So you’ve kind of grown into this person now. And, yeah, I think naturally, you will, having this YouTube channel, get more confident, and, you know, have have that extension of your personality, but at the same time, yeah, that’s, you can’t be expected to be like that all the time. Although I think it is nice that, you know, seeing you speaking with you in the kitchen and stuff, it feels like I’m speaking to the same person who I watch, you know, in your videos, when you’re when you’re talking in your videos. And tying to that question before about self perception, and confidence. Do you think you’ve learned anything about yourself in particular, like a particular strength that you think you’ve got from starting these videos? If you made yourself three years ago, compared to now? In what way? Do you think you’ve improved from having this channel because it must help you It gives you motivation to keep going, keep getting better, because you’ve got these people you know, you can’t just stop studying and stop doing those studying, study. Study with me the live videos and stuff.
Nasir Kharma 26:42
Yeah, I feel like I’ve always been someone who’s focused on like, working hard, being really productive, being very disciplined or whatever. But this, this channel has sort of pushed that to the limit, in a sense for me, I feel like I’m juggling as many things as I can at the moment. But honestly, more than some big strength that I’ve gained, I’ve realized that like, I definitely can’t do public speaking. I really, I just like, even like talking to you guys now, right? Like, anytime I talk about something like serious, or I talk for an extended period of time, like I said, like, I forget how to breathe properly. I just like, I’ll realize myself, like, out of breath, and I’m like, let’s start again. And like, yeah, like, I get like, shaky and my body reacts in a way as if I’m like, really, really stressed. Or really nervous, even though I’m not in my head, but like my body reacted in that way. Which is like really annoying, especially in interviews. And that’s something that I talk about in my medicine interviews, actually, videos on medicine interviews. Anyway, so yeah, I definitely can’t do public speaking. Like, I know that for a fact, that has been like, hammered home in this process of making YouTube videos. And we did you say you’ve experienced that whilst, like recording videos as well, like just having when you’re just sat there recording? Because I guess it’s a type of speaking. But yeah, like,
Subaan Qasim 28:01
have you ever felt that?
Nasir Kharma 28:03
Definitely at the beginning. And by beginning, I mean, like the first I don’t know, maybe like 2025 videos or something like that. Like, when I was talking to the camera, I felt like I was talking to like a bunch of people in the room. And that is like, stressful, you know. And then slowly, slowly, over time, the camera became like, like, I was talking to a friend, and then it becomes a lot easier to talk to the camera. And to that hurt, I got over towards the beginning, like let’s say 20 videos or so. But then vlogging in public was also a similar experience. And it takes a while to get over that hurdle. And I always thought that if I had more subscribers, if I had more views, I would feel more justified in talking to a camera in public. But that’s not what helped me at all. What helped me with vlogging in public was the same thing that helps me with anything else that I’m not good at, which is just doing it over and over again. And gaining that exposure. Again, by like, practice. So yeah, so I definitely did feel nervous towards the beginning. And I still feel nervous when I vlog in public. It’s like, it’s just, it’s not normal, like thing to do, you know, something you don’t see too often. And so,
Subaan Qasim 29:12
it definitely feels like there’s a lot of eyes on you, even though there probably isn’t. Have you ever considered taking YouTube full time? Or is have you ever thought about it? Or like do something similar to say like, Alia doll who has just taken a hiatus from medicine, at least for the next period of time? Have you ever thought about doing something like that? No, I
Nasir Kharma 29:32
never have because, like, my life goal has always been to become a doctor. And that is still my life goal right now. And it’s still my number one priority. And I just feel like I can do YouTube on the side at the same time. And so I haven’t really thought about taking a full time like my my big career aspirations is not it’s not to be a YouTuber, not saying that being a YouTuber is a bad thing. I think it’s an amazing job. It’s it’s amazing lifestyle to lead. But what I want to do is be a doctor. That’s like the first and foremost thing in my life. And then I have all my extracurriculars, my hobby didn’t make DVDs and whatever. And YouTube is one of those. And you’ve recently done the usmle, which I’m assuming was all was quite the experience. Yeah.
Subaan Qasim 30:13
What was was the plan, say in terms of your medical career Do you plan on? Well, if you do the usmle, I’m assuming you at least have some kind of plan on going to the US and practicing the upang just practicing normal? Or what kind of specialty Do you think you’d want to go into?
Nasir Kharma 30:27
So I took I took the usmle, not particularly because I was dead set on going to the United States. For my special for my residency, I took it because over the course of two university degrees, one thing that has like stayed constant is the realization that you just don’t know what’s gonna happen in a year from now. Like, I’ve moved countries, like two, three times of me had to make completely new friend groups everywhere I’ve gone have adapted to new cultures like this, this and that. And I feel like having the ability, if I wanted to go practice medicine, in a different country, is really, really powerful. And it’s something that I might want to do in the future. And so that’s why I took the usmle. And that’s why I’m going to do my f1 and my f2 here. So that should I choose to stay here, should I choose to go? I have the option. I just want to have options. I don’t I hate the idea. Yes. Like I’m on this path that I have to complete, that there’s no like caviar, Rondo and no detour.
Daniel Redfearn 31:24
That’s the beautiful thing about the generation we live in, there’s so much freedom to just sort of explore avenues that you want to explore that will just wouldn’t have been there 2030 years ago, yeah. And it ties into maybe something a bit outside of your career and more an opinion on something that Subaan and I have a slightly different approach to how we like to organize our time and organize our lifestyles. And I wanted to know what you think about how do you go about learning something for the first time or going into a new interest? Or even organizing your studies? What’s your preferred way of doing? Do you like to be very by the book, the reason why I’m asking this as well is because we’re talking about your future, you’d like to have that freedom. But at the same time, I think it’s always important for someone to have a direction that they’re working towards, like, for me, it was always I knew from when I was about 12 or 13, that I wanted to do cardiology with children. So it helped me make all of my career decisions from that very point. In all interviews, from then on video, are you the same Do you have like a specific goal, when you start something new, and you just work towards it,
Nasir Kharma 32:28
I think if I can have a specific goal, for example, if I knew what specialty I wanted to do, I think that’d be amazing, because I would know where my end goal is. And then I’d figure out the best way backwards from that end goal way. But more often than not, I don’t have that in golf, like right, nine, I don’t know what specialty I want to go into. And I think it’s infinitely more important to just throw yourself into whatever it is that you’re trying to learn whatever it is you’re trying to do, than it is to make sure that you have the perfect goal set out and work towards that. Because going back to what I said before, like you just don’t know what’s gonna happen. And like, for someone who’s dead sound a specialty, that’s like, that’s really good, that’s really great. But for a lot of people, you know, they choose a specialty, they change their mind and choose another specialty, they change their mind. And I think that’s fine, I think we should go through that process, because that helps you solidify what you want to know. But I think the important thing is that along the way, you try as much as you can, and you do as much as you can expose yourself to as much as you can. So going back to like organizing your studies, for anything that have to be like study for an exam or write an essay or whatever. I guess that has a pretty clear end goal, like on this date, your thing has to be due. But I always just start immediately, whatever’s in my head, I throw it down onto paper. If I know that the exams covering cardiology, I’ll start reading cardiology chapter one, and then I’ll figure everything else out as I go along. I don’t like to from the very beginning. This is a difficult one. It’s like, like what I’m saying is is true, but applies to certain things. And I’m trying to figure out what is the differentiating factor between when I do that, and when I don’t? I think if I can set out a plan, I like to set out a plan. But if I can’t, I will just throw myself into it. And there’s there’s like no, in the middle, there’s no like, Wait till I figure out a better plan type of thing. I’d rather just get started and figure it out as I go along. But if I know enough about what I’m doing, then I’d rather set a plan,
Daniel Redfearn 34:19
if that makes sense. And do you think once you get your head into something, so something I think someone is similar to me in this respect, if I’m into for example, like in the last few months, I’ve been severely obsessed with Mandarin, and then it may not be helping my medical career really. I can’t stop myself from doing it. And I’m just doing it all the time constantly. Do you find that you have that sort of trait because I find that in doing that I can’t really be too organized about it because I’m just wanting to do all the time. So I don’t want to factor in, you know, tomorrow I’m gonna do four hours, because I want to do it for as many minutes as possible. If you are preparing for an exam or something, would you be similar in that respect, you know, would you do you schedule your time For the studying or just constantly doing it, if that makes sense.
Nasir Kharma 35:03
Oh, and I like studying, I schedule my my time. I do enjoy the study. Yeah, yeah. All right. I really enjoy studying, I really enjoyed learning. But then for example, for the usmle, step one, like studying and learning every single day for four months in a row, like, No, I don’t enjoy that. But like, there’s a distinction there. I think there needs to be clear, because I commented on someone, another medical students vlog the other day saying, really like this blog, like balance in medical school is key. And I got a bunch of replies saying, This is coming from the guy who just studies all day. And I was like, Whoa, that’s kind of not who I am at all. Like, when I have an exam, you bet you bet. I’m gonna be studying all day. But who I am as a person, like, no, that’s not me at all. And there was sort of this like, discrepancy between who I know I am and who I am in real life. And the perception that people have of me because of those videos were steady, 10 hours, in a single setting eight hours in a single setting, whatever. But it just felt like making that video that weekend. You know, like I was getting that long.
Daniel Redfearn 36:04
But that must be natural, right? People extrapolate perceptions of you based off of the content, they don’t know all the things about you. That must get frustrating.
Nasir Kharma 36:12
Yeah, I try not to let it bother me too much. And it doesn’t bother me too much. Because I feel very lucky in the sense that, thanks for knocking what as well, so fine, you didn’t see but I’m not doing that and done. Yeah, I feel very lucky. In that I’m really confident with who I am as a person. I like myself, which is like, it sounds silly. But like, I think it’s really, really important that you actually like who you are as a person. Where was I going with this?
Daniel Redfearn 36:41
and dealing with the people who sort of have that in common? Yeah.
Nasir Kharma 36:44
So if people have an incorrect perception of me, I’m like, okay, like, I can explain once, maybe twice, like, why I think that that’s not the case. But if if they don’t believe that, if they don’t see that, like, that’s okay. they’re entitled to their own opinion, like I’m entitled to my own. And I’m happy with why I’m moving forward, you know,
Daniel Redfearn 36:58
and I think that’s where you have to have a fairly thick skin, because that’s something that would bother me. I thought about after we spoke, one at one time in the kitchen, thinking how would I feel having a channel where there’s so many people about me where people can extrapolate and say things about me that aren’t necessarily true? Or have a perception, which is wrong. And I would want to correct every single person and just say, actually, that’s not entirely correct. But you can’t do that. You just have to accept that some people are going to have this opinion of you, which is a right. And I mean, the other thing about it is the internet is so once you put something out that is there for the world to see. So every video, you have to you must have to be careful in what you’re saying to make sure that people don’t come back two years later and say, well, you said this
Nasir Kharma 37:41
at that point for sure. Yeah. I try not to be too careful in that sense. Because if I think about like, how is this going to be viewed in two years from now? I feel like I wouldn’t say anything. But at the same time, like when I went on my Instagram, I had like 500 followers or 1000 followers, I like I would upload on story, like whatever the hell I wanted, whenever I felt like Monday, but now I do think twice. Like I’ll think three times before I post something. Because, you know, I just I know a lot more people are gonna see it, and some people might take offense to it. Some people might not. Even if I think that it should be there, even if people take offense, like it’s something to consider because I don’t want to cause offense to anyone, right? Even if I believe I should be able to say this, or I should be able to do this or whatever. So yeah, I definitely think more of what I posted on what I say,
Daniel Redfearn 38:32
is there any video that you’ve made or something you’ve said in the past that you think is a mistake at this point, or that you’ve sort of moved on from if that makes sense? Or any regret you haven’t like maybe even it’s just the nature of your content. You wish that you went down a certain rabbit hole sooner or capitalized on something new, like a missed opportunity.
a missed opportunity. Yes,
Daniel Redfearn 38:52
yes. Yes. Oh, spill the beans. So
Subaan Qasim 38:55
Daniel Redfearn 38:59
about getting on this podcast, we’re not sorry.
Nasir Kharma 39:04
You should put this at the beginning. As we like teaser for the towards the beginning of my time on YouTube, I think maybe like two months and three months in. I decided to make a video about why I think Instagram is bad. Why I think it’s bad for children, teenagers mental health. Why? Personally, I felt that Instagram was having a negative effect on my life. And why I decided to unfollow absolutely everyone who I knew except for like 100 people, I went from pulling like 500 people to 100 and I made this video and it was 10 minutes long. And I was iffy. I was iffy about posting it because it was a video where for the first time I was going to be expressing my opinions as opposed to teaching someone something or giving like advice about learning something. And so I thought about it I thought about I thought about it. And then I was like you know what, I’m not gonna upload it.
Daniel Redfearn 39:58
Even at that point you didn’t end up uploading It, it’s an
Nasir Kharma 40:00
it’s never seen the light of day. And then a couple of days later, Casey Neistat posted a video about why he thinks Instagram is not good for teenagers and why he’s deleting Instagram. And on the biggest case, and I surf on his his vlogging style, his editing style is a huge influence on mine. And if you if you watch, everyone’s had an obsession with him, yeah, he’s incredible. He’s absolutely incredible. And that video of his blew up, it blew up so much. And I just knew had I uploaded it. And I had a similar title, my video, it also gained a lot of traction.
Daniel Redfearn 40:39
But you couldn’t do that. You couldn’t do that the next day? Why? I think I was but
Nasir Kharma 40:44
I could I could have been I could have. But I think I think I just still couldn’t get over that hurdle of like, I felt like I didn’t want to be expressing my own opinions on this topic. in a public forum. I didn’t feel comfortable enough.
Daniel Redfearn 40:56
I guess at the time, I think it was something that worries me as well about the internet, especially if you have a big following is, we’re so young, you know, in our early to mid 20s. We’re still learning so much. So I really am trying to learn more about the world, it sounds very cringy, probably, but I really am. And I think it’s going to be another 10 or 15 years of learning before I can really set my opinions because I have opinions now already. For example, I have opinions about China, or I have opinions about Russia. But I’m too young to have those opinions solidified yet, and I don’t want to come back to those opinions in the future. Having shared them and then realize I was completely wrong is a really dangerous thing to do. And any opinion you do share online is going to divide people to any video you make. Again, I think you can be quite diplomatic in the nature of your content. But if you want to make a video about an opinion on productivity, there will be people who will get irritated by it or who will be offended by it. And I think that’s where it’s really interesting. You having to think how much am I going to share here? Because you know how many people are going to dislike this content? So yeah. With your video about Instagram, I guess the reason why I didn’t upload it, maybe it was because you weren’t sure how people would respond. Was that right? or?
Nasir Kharma 42:11
Yeah, at the time, like part of it as I was like, some of my friends might see this who who I have just unfollowed. And I was like, I don’t want to like be rude. I don’t want to be mean, I don’t want to be harsh. Like that was also part of it there. I guess there were just a lot of reasons why I didn’t upload the video on the end. But yeah, changing your opinions moving forward is a very real thing. And that’s why I’m very happy that I didn’t start putting things about myself online when I was a teenager. Yeah. Because my God, my views have changed so much since then. And I’ve become like, I’ve come to understand topics so much better than I thought were black and white before. And I would hate to have said something back then that was not sensitive, not sensitive or offensive to someone just because I hadn’t like thought it through properly. I hadn’t grown up and matured enough to like understand it. Well. I like to think that now, yes, my opinions might change in the future. But since I’m an adult, I won’t do or say anything that’s too outrageous. I like to think that I hope. But yeah, I agree with you. Definitely something to look out for.
Daniel Redfearn 43:19
And then Subaan Sorry, I interrupted you,
Subaan Qasim 43:21
I was gonna ask Jeff, like some kind of filter mechanism that you have in place as to whether you think you should upload something or not. Just because I’m assuming, as your following grows, you’re probably more aware of what you’re going to say, especially if it’s your opinion is going to be seen by more people. So it could potentially influence more people. Yeah. Do you have some kind of filter mechanism like or even if it’s just a gut feeling? Did you have like a gut feeling was making that Instagram videos like, Hmm, maybe I shouldn’t? Or was that just kind of like, thinking after the fact?
Nasir Kharma 43:54
Yeah, it was definitely the gut feeling while editing the video, like while editing a video and called the sense of like, maybe I don’t want to put this out. And then I sort of analyzed it, quote unquote, rationally, and decided not to put it out. But I will say, that is the only video that I haven’t uploaded, that is filmed and recorded and ready to go. But I chose not to upload. It hasn’t happened since. And, I mean, a part of that is because I’ve gotten better at editing out things that I think might not be received well on the internet. And those types of things include any sort of like, medical advice. I mean, I would never give medical advice anywhere in the video. But if something sounds like it could be like medical advice in some way. It’s getting cut out. Even if I’m like teaching a medical topic, like I would have to be 100% sure, and what I’m saying before I would put it out on the internet, you know, because yeah, I feel like there will be people who like pick holes in our say like, actually, no, that’s not true or whatever. And like just don’t get into that.
Daniel Redfearn 44:53
Earlier we were establishing that almost anything you do will offend some people in a certain way or just be against what how they perceive that Well, is there anything that any video or any viewpoint that surprised you in terms of a negative response that you didn’t expect people to get annoyed but
Nasir Kharma 45:07
yes, yes. I during the beginning of lockdown, I thought I was going to be both smart and helpful by making a video about how to wash your hands so that people could wash their hands properly and prevent the spread of Coronavirus is quite reasonable thing to do. I was like, you know, I’m a good guy like, I can teach you how to wash their hand. And at the same time, I’m a smart guy and you know, lockdowns happening like Google searches about the pandemic and washing hands are up
Daniel Redfearn 45:32
for the Oscars.
Nasir Kharma 45:35
exactly that. So I made the video, I put it up. And that video has the worst response that I’ve ever gotten out of any video on my channel.
Daniel Redfearn 45:45
Did you do anything in it? Like, I
Nasir Kharma 45:46
just want to take a guess why? I’m washing my hands uncontroversial thing, and I’m just washing my hands and teaching the five minutes of hand washing.
Daniel Redfearn 45:55
Is it someone saying that? They don’t think washing hands? Is that like anti COVID? People? No, no,
Nasir Kharma 46:01
it’s perfect. It’s a perfectly reasonable reason to have outrage about my video, believe it or not.
Daniel Redfearn 46:09
I don’t know, I can’t imagine what you did wrong in making it harder washing. Out of all the videos, you’ve done people to get really irritated by
Nasir Kharma 46:16
that one. So what I did was, while I was washing my hands for 30 seconds, I left the top running. And I got so much backlash. So much backlash. I could have I could have I could have never dreamed it. You know, I’ve never seen that coming.
Daniel Redfearn 46:32
That’s the thing you can get like, you can have people down on you for something that you’re not aware of. And that’s what I would find. That’s why I keep going back to it with questions that I asked is like, you have to be so careful. Is there something in the background, for example that people don’t pick up on or people start picking holes in your lifestyle and expecting you to live to a higher standard than everyone else just because of your your following because people look up to you, but then that surely actually having an influence on your personality. So you actually living to a higher level? When I say that, you know, I mean, like being more cautious in the way you live your life because of that following. So the following actually driving how you live your life because of expectation and stuff is really interesting. And surely every video you make you have to be thinking, have I done the same thing as a hand washing video, you know, have I done something here just said something very offhand, that suddenly people gonna pick out.
Nasir Kharma 47:21
I honestly don’t think about it now. Because in the editing process, I’ll pick up like almost anything that I think is my remotely cause offense. Like, I don’t want to cause offense to anyone in, in my real life, for sure. I hope I haven’t caused any offense to anyone I’ve spoken to in real life, let alone in a YouTube video where I can actually edit my like words, you know. So yeah, I definitely err on the side of caution, let’s say. But something that has sort of infiltrated my how I act in real life that you were just mentioning now is when I walk around on the street, I get recognized now by people. And it’s it’s not like it’s happened one off now. And like, it hasn’t happened again. Like when my girlfriend was visiting from Greece. Last month, we went out five days in a row, not last month. I don’t remember when anyway, back when shops were still open. Because Yeah, that’s that’s people turning on you. So for example, Yeah, right there. If I was talking to my friend, if I was talking to my friend in the kitchen, I would have been like a month ago now. And it would be in my head. Like, maybe it was a month, month and a half. But who cares. But now I’m like, Oh, wait, I should actually get the timeline. Right? Because if I say I was out during lockdown,
Daniel Redfearn 48:31
yeah. And they should just burn calendars. But now we’ll get some controversy.
Nasir Kharma 48:37
Don’t Don’t cut it out. Like, I know that time. Yeah, I’m not worried about that. It’s just about like clarifying and being being more deliberate with what I say. Anyway, so I was out when the shops were open, cuz I was doing my yearly shopping that I was telling you about my girlfriend helps me buy my clothes, clothes. And every single day that we went out, I was recognized every single day. And to think that someone standing across from me, has so much more knowledge about who I am as a person. And I know nothing about them is very scary to me. And feeling like if someone was to if someone wants to rub me the wrong way in public, like cut in front of me in line, okay, I would not stand for that. I think that’s not okay. And I would let them know. Okay. Now let’s say that person watches my videos, and I get into a heated conversation with them. Okay? That like that scares me mad like, someone who watches my videos has seen me being angry and frustrated in a public setting. That’s weird. That scares me. Even though I feel like I would be falling in the right with everything I said like I wouldn’t do anything disrespectful I wouldn’t do anything mean I wouldn’t swear anyone or whatever. But I would stand my ground. But I still I don’t know. It feels weird that someone might see that who knows my videos who watches me. It’s a weird one. It’s a weird one.
Daniel Redfearn 49:56
Because that’s the that’s you being yourself but then they they’re perceiving that to be Medic, you know, like, common medic being rude or Yeah,
Nasir Kharma 50:03
exactly, exactly. Which is weird and like,
Daniel Redfearn 50:06
it takes the choice away from you. Because it’s, you can’t just choose when you call a medic, and when you’re just being yourself, because other people don’t see it that way, they can’t differentiate between the two, you know, you’re not, just because you don’t have a camera in front of you, they’re expecting you to be a certain way per se. And yeah, be so careful because of that. And as if it keeps growing, you know, touchwood, if you keep growing in the subscribers, that’s not gonna slow down, that’s probably going to speed up more, and you’re gonna expect every time you go out to Central London, people going to stop you, then it’s like, how you’re dressed because people gonna photograph it. And I can imagine it’s actually a whole new set of things in your personality that you have to incorporate the two or three years ago just weren’t a factor.
Nasir Kharma 50:43
Yeah. It’s just like, the thing is like, I’m not worried about running into anyone in public, because I’m not worried about me doing something bad in public, like, I know who I am, I’m going to be fine, right? But like, inevitably, something is going to happen. I’m going to make a mistake, I’m going to do something that I shouldn’t have, I’m going to say something action. It’s only human, it’s only normal. And I just like I hate the idea that that could be amplified to an online audience. And that’s scary. Because of the fact that I have an online audience. I might not get a second chance, you know, if I was to do something super outrageous. And kings was to know about it, for example, Kings has no choice. Yeah, yeah. Like when the outrage starts, and people start saying, hey, this person goes to your uni, they have no choice. And I hate that feeling. It’s like, no, yeah. And imagine like all these years where I’ve been doing, quote, unquote, like completely benign, like content and things that hopefully are helpful and valuable to other people. And then, if I was to make a mistake, or say something that I shouldn’t have, for that, to have, like, such drastic negative effects on me, like that’s scary,
Daniel Redfearn 51:42
that is scary. That’s why I quite like how you’ve done it in the sense that then probably because it came because your channel grew organically, it just grew, you were making your own content. And you were just basically turning on the camera and being yourself just talking about things you like. And what I was saying before about you when the camera off, and when the camera on isn’t different. So at least, I think it would be worse for people who have almost like a different persona when they’re recording because then when someone comes up to them in public, which they have to do that all the time, you know, or people who are famous for one reason, or one video or something like that, at least with you. People know you as the medical student who shares advice and productivity and stuff. And that is really who you are.
Nasir Kharma 52:23
And you’re like a big part of that that’s helpful is like, what my online content is about is something that is good. Yeah, like it’s something that is positive. Like, imagine my online presence was about being controversial or like doing something like that offends people. They’d be scared. I’d be so scared. People do that. Like, yeah, people do that.
Subaan Qasim 52:41
prank videos and stuff.
Nasir Kharma 52:43
For example, for example. I mean, I don’t think I would ever put myself online in that fashion anyway. Because I’m not that type of person. But if I wasn’t a type person, I wouldn’t, because I feel like that’d be a dumping. But yeah, it’s scary that people can know so much about me through watching my videos. What normally happens when someone comes up to you, could
Daniel Redfearn 53:01
you take me through because I have to admit, sadly, for me, no one’s got up to the river. What happens?
Nasir Kharma 53:07
It’s like, it’s been so positive every time I like, I genuinely have nothing bad saying I guess all these like worries and fears that I have. I’ve never actually experienced them. But I’m worried that they might happen. What usually happens is I’m just walking around, and I just hear, oh, my God, karma medic.
Daniel Redfearn 53:26
And you’re like, Oh, that’s me. And I’m like,
Nasir Kharma 53:28
Oh, yeah. First of all, there’s a moment of realization like, Oh, this person’s referring to me. And then I’ll turn around, and someone’s like, really, really excited to like, Come say hi to me, come talk to me. And I’m just like, Hi, hello. Like, what’s your name? Like, ask them some questions. We have a brief conversation. And then I’m happy to take a photo with absolutely anyone, but I’ll never I’ll never offer it. I’ll never say it because that’s just kind of weird, you know, but if someone asks, like, I always say, Yes, I’ve never said no. The other day, I was walking around, around celac. And no joke. I’m not exaggerating, this group of 12 people. Okay, 1212 walked by them. Okay. And I’ve sort of developed a sense now, for one, I think someone might recognize them, okay. It’s just the way they look at you the way that lingers a bit too long, like something happens and like, I just know, I was like, okay, maybe they recognize me, but again, it’s not like I’m gonna walk up to them and be like, hey, do you if they come up to me, like, they come up to me, right? So I thought maybe they recognize me, but I’m like, you know, I could just be thinking about incorrectly. And I keep walking and before I know it, oh my god, cosmetic correct. Oh, my God, cosmetic. The whole group. The whole group, I turn around and there’s three girls running up to me with their phones out. No joke. Like wanting to take a photo. Okay. Okay. And yeah, just start asking me questions like What are you doing here about blah, I can’t believe you’re here. Your videos have helped me so much like this, this and that. And then we took a bunch of group photos we like chatted for a bit, they were going to have to To watch like a movie or something, and yeah, it’s just like, surreal. It’s surreal. It’s goes back to what I’m saying before, like, I can’t put myself in the shoes of this person who they’re saying, Oh my god, karma medic? Who is that guy?
Daniel Redfearn 55:13
Nasir Kharma 55:14
it’s like, I it is an extension of me. And I don’t feel like it’s a different character, whatever. But I just find it hard that someone would look up to me in such a way.
Daniel Redfearn 55:22
Okay, this, I have to ask them coming on from that. So what about because people know your career, basically, they know the stage you’re at, which is, in some ways, quite a personal thing. They know what your job is basically, when you’re in the hospital, have you ever been recognized by a colleague not sign an hour? Yeah, but maybe one of the doctors or even a patient because obviously you haven’t to do your job there and help the patient but that that I can imagine as well for like, you know, the celebrity doctors, that’s something they have to deal with no know how to deal with it. Have you thought about that? What will happen in those situations?
Nasir Kharma 55:58
I most definitely have. I’ve been recognized by so many healthcare professionals, so many consultants, doctors, physios, nurses, pretty much everyone. Which is, which is crazy in itself. Like someone many years older than me, watching or having seen my videos is is crazy. And then begins the the thoughts of like, what do these people think of me? Right? Because if they watch my videos, and they’re like, oh, wow, this person is like helping medical students or whatever, that’s great. Okay. But if they watch these videos, and they’re like, Who does this person think he is? Why is he sharing this content online? This person just looking for fame? This This and that? Yeah, I would, I would be devastated. If someone thought that of me, not I met them in real life, like that would crush me, you know. And I would hate for that to happen. And worse than that, I would hate for a patient to think about me. Right? To have a negative opinion of me before we even start a consultation. You know, I hope that never happens. I really do. I acknowledge that it’s bound to happen. But I hope it never does.
Daniel Redfearn 57:04
You know, and I’m so in China, there’s the concept of face, which is like you have different faces in different settings. And I find personally, when I’m in the hospital, I’m almost like a different person, because you have to be right. So when I was in Ed, I found that most like, most strongly or more strongly than ever before, I would open up the curtain and see the patient, close the curtain and start speaking with them. And I was just almost a different person than when I was speaking with the doctors, because you have to show that you have knowledge and that you’re confident and stuff. Really professional, and what you’re saying about consultants knowing who you are beforehand, or if a patient has a preconception of you, you don’t have the choice of what phase you’re going to have. Yeah, people know you’re ready.
Nasir Kharma 57:43
Yes. Because like when you work with your colleagues, like, for all, you know, your colleague could be someone who goes out and parties really hard on the weekend takes all kinds of drugs, like there’s a bunch of things that they probably shouldn’t be doing. And it shows up to work at 9am and does a fantastic job could easily happen probably happens all the time. And they would not have a negative opinion of that person. Because they just don’t know. Yeah, but for me, you know, for like, I remember when that when we did the Times article interview over the summer, the comments under that post, were all older people talking about how these people aren’t doctors, they’re just seeking fame, yada, yada, yada. And I’m like, imagine a patient thinks of me and I walk in through the curtain. Like I thought that would be crushing. How would I move past that? You know? That’s like I said, I hope it doesn’t happen. But I mean, it’s, I think it’s inevitable at some point, we’ll all run into somebody who knows me who has a negative opinion of me. And I don’t know, honestly, I
Daniel Redfearn 58:42
don’t know what I would do. I mean, in the in the hospital so far. Have you found that even outside of the hospital, the The more you, the more popular you become? Do you find that it affects the way you can trust people as well? Because Do you think there are ever times that people are looking to do you’re saying people commenting, sorry, there’s quite disorganized train of ideas. But on your article, people were saying that, you know, maybe you’re these people just seeking fame? What about people then who you mean, now, the more well known you become wanting to jump on the back of you or wanting to use you? So how can how does that affect your trust in other people?
Nasir Kharma 59:19
That’s a good question. When when I meet other people, I I the assumption is always that this person does not know about my YouTube channel. And I think that’s how it should be very stupid to go the other way. And so until that person lets me know that they do watch my videos or whatever, I would never even think that they do. And so my trust would be how I would trust anybody else. Yeah, like I I always think the best in people like my trust is pretty easy to gain. Impossible to gain back if trust is broken. Because I feel like I get it so easily like I, you know, but I genuinely don’t expect the worst in people, which I think isn’t always the best. I think my thing, sometimes I give too much of the benefit of the doubt. I guess it’s something that like I’m learning to balance, if that makes
Daniel Redfearn 1:00:16
sense, because I’m sure in some ways it’s inevitable. And then, as well, in other people’s perceptions of us really interesting, you’re saying the people you meet sometimes will just not know about your YouTube channel. And that still probably happens a lot. We’ve had episodes on it before Subaan, I don’t think it was released the episode on like, managing success and how you carry success. We’ve all had elements of success in our lives. And something that I’ve really had to learn about, as I’ve got older, is how I share that success with other people. So when I was
Nasir Kharma 1:00:49
in book about this, I remember we were in the kitchen with Angela, and you were saying like how much you should show how much you know, when a conversation and things like that?
Daniel Redfearn 1:00:58
Yes, yes, gone. So yeah, managing, managing, if it was being disowned, and for example, they, they don’t know who you are. And you think that it might be useful for them to know who you are in the conversation? Or I don’t know, did you ever feel like you have to let someone know who you are as a caveat, or?
Nasir Kharma 1:01:16
No, I have, I can safely say that I’ve never brought it up myself. I’ve never once introduced the idea that I make YouTube videos on the internet. And I have a large following. Because I don’t think that that’s like part of the core of who I am. Like I am the person that I was before I started this hobby, that is YouTube. And now it’s just another hobby in my life, it just so happens that it’s extremely successful. It’s doing really, really well. And I’m very happy about that. But it’s not like a defining feature of who I am, you know, who I am is someone who wants to become a doctor. That’s what I think is like my defining feature, not my defining feature, but something core to who I am.
Nasir Kharma 1:01:58
yeah, I don’t know, I like I’ve never brought it up first in a conversation.
Daniel Redfearn 1:02:04
Is there a way that you do it? Because again, this is something? For example, if founding members are saying to me, are you at uni and stuff, because I think people often are quite impressed by if you study medicine, or if you go to a good union stuff. There’s a way to do it, I guess, is there a way that you would introduce it to someone who didn’t know about it? And they said to you, is there anything you do on the side? And you said, I don’t know I have a YouTube channel? Is there any way you’d go about that or something you could tell two people how to share your success in a nice way that’s not putting other people down, not making them feel uncomfortable. And as being humble, you know, while being realistic. What I do, I
Subaan Qasim 1:02:38
guess, that concludes part one of our conversation with NASA karma. In part two, we have a broader discussion on the nature of success, lifestyle, design and productivity, as well as the different ways we can approach learning in all facets of life. Thank you for listening to this episode
Daniel Redfearn 1:02:54
of Getting It. If you enjoyed this episode or didn’t then feel free to leave us a rating and review on the apple podcasts or on the apple podcasts website.
Subaan Qasim 1:03:03
We’d love to hear your thoughts, ideas or questions about anything we discussed, so feel free to email us at thoughts at Getting it.co UK.
Daniel Redfearn 1:03:10
You can also reach us on Twitter or Instagram at Getting It
Subaan Qasim 1:03:14
underscore pod. You can find all the links in the show notes.