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Queer Eye host Karamo Brown reveals the hardest lesson he’s ever learned

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Colin Crummy
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Karamo brown from queer eye

Five Minute Philosopher is a weekly series in which Stylist gets profound with people we love. What will the Netflix makeover guru make of our existential questions?

What is the meaning of life?

To love yourself and love others.

What is the difference between right and wrong?

I don’t believe in the word wrong. I truly believe we can learn from everything and things that are wrong are just lessons you needed. If you didn’t do it, you wouldn’t have known that it was going to hurt others.

Where is your happy place?

In my bed, with my fiancé’s leg wrapped over me.

Nature or nurture?

I’m more nurture. I just believe that we all have the ability to grow.

Is it more important to be liked or respected?

Both of those are horrible because you are basing your self-esteem on someone else. That’s an unhealthy way to live. I prefer to respect and love myself. Who cares what other people say?

If you could be remembered for one thing what would it be?

Kindness. That’s my hope.

Who or what is your greatest love?

My kids. They get on my nerves, don’t get me wrong. But if I’m sad or down, if I think of them, they make me so happy inside.

When did you last lie?

It’s been a long time. I don’t like lies because you have to remember them and my memory sucks. Who has time to keep up with all of that?

Does the supernatural exist?

I hope so. If you’re at a party and someone walks into a room and you feel their energy and everyone is gravitating towards them – I think the same thing extends to the supernatural. We feel this presence that used to be here.

Are you fatalistic?

Definitely not. If things were predetermined, what chance would we have for growth? That would be horrible.

What is your greatest fear?

Being fearful. Every time I go to make a fear-based decision, I think, “Should I be making a love-based decision?”

Animals or babies?

That’s a hard one because I want a baby right now. I’m contemplating adopting another child but also we just moved to a new house so I’m, like, we need a bigger dog. Can I say both?

What talent do you yearn for?

I would love to be able to sing. I would sing gospel music. Joyful and upbeat.

Do you like to be complimented?

Everyone loves to be complimented. But I love to give compliments more. It’s nice to make other people smile.

Do you have a high pain threshold?

I do not. I scream dramatically when a needle pricks me.

Crucial conversations book cover by Kerry Patterson

Crucial Conversations is the book you should get after you’re bought Karamo’s new book

What book do you recommend most to others?

The one I love the most is Crucial Conversations [by Kerry Patterson]. Sometimes people don’t know how to have the hard conversation with themselves or with others. I really should have said my book. Forget that other book. My book!

Which lesson has been the hardest to learn?

Not to be so hard on myself. We all have expectations of ourselves and people put expectations on us and sometimes when you don’t reach those expectations, you start to think, ‘Am I a failure, am I doing what I am meant to do?’ But I realised we are all growing at our own pace and whatever that pace is, it’s OK.

What food sums up happiness?

I’m Jamaican and Cuban so curried goat and white rice and plantain.

What have you never understood?

My fiancé’s mind.

What is the one thing you want to know before you die?

I’ll figure that out on my deathbed because as of right now, anything I want to learn, I just pick up a book or google it. On that last day, I might be like, “Damnit, I didn’t learn this.”

Are you scared of dying or what happens when you die?

I’m not scared of dying, or not afraid or curious about what happens. I’m a big believer in energy. We are all balls of energy. My energy will be transferred somewhere else. If that’s some kind of heaven or other person or thing, I know my energy will continue to exist. That’s why I try to put out the most positive energy possible.

Quinoa or Quavers?

Neither. No, thank you. They are both gross to me.

Karamo: My Story Of Embracing Purpose, Healing And Hope (£18.99, Simon & Schuster), is out on 4 April

Images: Alex Rhoades, McGraw-Hill Education

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