An author, a media trainer and a renowned television presenter, Lebanon's Rima Habib Karaki seems to have a lot on her plate. But the zealous personality is still rearing to go. Describing her career as "a non-stop discovery trip where the excitement never fades" Rima definitely has come a long way. A former bank worker, she entered the world of media when she was discovered by well-known director, Antoine Remi, who asked her do a camera test and then recruited her right away.
"The key success is to be the only one who does not believe it and lives accordingly," the media star tells Arab Today. “We have to be the creators of our own words and not machines reciting papers others prepare. I honestly feel very powerful coming up with ideas for programmes and asking my own question” she adds.
Talking about her transition from the world of finance – as a business computer graduate – to the world of television, Rima affirms she has “no regrets” going down a different career path.
“Regret does not exist in my dictionary,” she explains. “I think that mistakes, even vices are blessings. They are the strongest lessons we always remember. They make life less perfect and thus less boring.”
“Following this path made me discover that I can write and that I can be someone of influence. It was in fact a good decision, despite all the accusations I was reproached because I left a secure job. I am proud of what I did” she states.
Rima laments on television in Lebanon, affirming that although the country possesses “quality” people, they are not “properly valued.”
“We are progressing backwards - looks and connections are the main success criteria and this is ridiculous.”
The presenter goes on to analyse the country’s political programmes: “On the political level, shows are becoming somewhat of a battle field that nurture more sectarianism. We pretend to be ‘free’ and that is the biggest joke ever. We are trapped like kittens in the hands of politicians and corrupted people.”
Going on to talk about her own career and personal experiences, Rima revealed that she has many “unforgettable moments” working as a presenter.
“In my last show, Bidoun Za3al, I was able to delve into many controversial issues and taboos including religion, politics and sex. Episodes were daring and some answers constituted book material by themselves. To top this, I was usually joined by some guests who were as deep and profound as philosophers.”
Rima discusses challenges faced being a presenter in Lebanon, stating: “There is a narrow perception about women in media in our country; females tend to be judged by their looks and age which sadly can limit their chances of being seen as ‘worthy’ in the industry.”
When asked where she sees herself in ten years, Rima disclosed: “In a small house in the countryside, writing stories, listening to music, laughing at all my battles and challenges, and falling in love again with nature, music, God and above all still drowning into a new challenge of a different kind.”