Instagram.com/itsgurnaz

Gurnaz: A powerhouse that likes to keep it real

By:
Gurshabad Kang (@gurshabadkang)

Gurnaz is a talented video creator, whose hilarious and relatable content has gained her a devoted following. She leaves no stone unturned with her bubbly personality and content, ranging from comedy, to beauty, to fashion, to just life in general.

Her consistency has garnered over 100K followers on Instagram and 219.2K followers on TikTok, with no signs of slowing down.

Gurnaz says she has always been known as the "dramebaaz" (class clown) and started out making videos for her own entertainment. 

She says she wanted to be an actress from a young age, and found an outlet to express herself. She uploaded her first video on Vine (rip) when she was just 14 years old.

"There was Superwoman & JusReign who were basically the only two prominent creators making content for the younger generation living outside of India. I think Vine was the first time I saw a community, apart from YouTube, of Indian content creators,” she said in an interview with 5X Press.

Unfortunately, Vine had a short life, and when the platform started to die down, Gurnaz made the shift to Instagram. She started making and posting small comedic skits, and eventually, she made her way onto TikTok & started posting on both platforms.

"At first I was making content based on what was trending on [TikTok], but I personally think TikTok really grew during quarantine last year. I noticed a lot of people from the Vancouver area join the app. I was making content about growing up in Canada as a first -generation Canadian, and my content resonated with people, and that’s when I found my target audience,” she says.

Gurnaz says that even though her social media has grown the most in the past year, she has been making content for the past 6-7 years. 

"I have finally found my flow," she laughed.

"People will watch my stuff and assume that I became successful by accident. But they don’t see the years I've spent to figure out the ropes of social media. I just finally got the hang of it."

It can be difficult to stay authentic on social media, while remaining true to one’s "real life," but Gurnaz says she tries to keep it real. 

"For me, it’s natural to play characters and have fun. I feel like being on the internet is easier than presenting yourself in real life.” she says.

“Being online has actually helped me grow as a person in regard to how I view myself, so they go hand in hand for me. I like to keep it real, whether that's online or offline."

Gurnaz thinks that Instagram entraps people into striving for perfection, which she says is unnecessary. 

"I don’t want to project the pressure of perfection onto other people, especially young impressionable girls that might see that and get a completely unrealistic idea of what they should look like,” she says. 

When it comes to negative comments, Gurnaz says she tries not to let what people think about her affect her own opinion about herself.

"I think it's rooted in humans to care about other people's opinions, and of course, I'm no exception, but I've come to the mental clarity that I only place value on the opinions of those whom I love, or those I admire or look up to," she says. 

Gurnaz says she eventually realized that when people aggressively hate on something, it's more about them and not about the thing or person they're hating on. 

She says the best policy is to ignore it and focus on the positive by thanking them for engaging with your content and helping you with the algorithm. 

She says that her life growing up has inspired her a lot along with the common occurrences she's seen in South Asian culture as a whole. 

Gurnaz finds other creators to be inspiring as well, and she likes to recreate popular trends, while adding her own flare.

She is also adamant to take time to unplug every day, and remind herself that the internet is not real.

"People assume that because I make videos that I must be on my phone all the time, but I feel like I have a pretty decent balance,” she says.

“I think it's very important to be present. I think people can fail to understand that the internet is not real, your present life is what's real. The internet is a tool and big part of my life, but it's not my whole life. You can't let it consume you."

Gurnaz also says that chasing fame won't sustain your content.

She says that her main goal is to make people laugh and making someone happy fulfills her the most.

"People from all around the world are thanking me for making them laugh. They say, 'this video really helped me' or 'omg I showed this to my mom, and we had a good laugh'. That makes me feel like I am never going to stop doing this," she says. 

Gurnaz believes that consistency is key on the Internet, because that is what is favoured. She says that as long as you keep at it, you'll eventually get good at it. Don't wait to get "good" before you start posting.

When asked about a piece of advice she has for anyone starting out, she quickly responds with:

"Don't take anything personally. No matter what anyone says, don't take it to heart. I started out when I was young and impressionable, and it can really affect your self image if you don't consciously make an effort to not let it happen,” she says.

"Always be real and authentic to who you are. People can tell when you're trying to be something you're not, and there's no need to be anything else. Be you and slowly your confidence will build."

She also shared her purpose and her vision moving forward.

"I want my page to continue to be a positive experience for anyone who comes across it. I hope people see something they like, and it makes them laugh or smile. That's all I really want to accomplish."

Watch our full Spotlight Series interview with Gurnaz on 5X Fest's Instagram.

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About the author: Gurshabad’s educational background in Biology and Psychology is inspired by her lifelong pursuit to seek and decipher the human connection. She loves McDonald’s fries, long walks on the beach, and telling people how to correctly pronounce her name. She regularly forces her friends to sit in her car & record a podcast aptly named Sitting In The Car. You can find her but more importantly her dog, @gurshabadkang on all platforms.

5X Press is a forum for opinions, conversations, & experiences, powered by South Asian youth. The views expressed here are not representative of those of 5X Festival.

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