[Portfolio] African cuisine made accessible through this subscription service

Welcome to our 'Portfolio' series. This series features sponsored content from brands and companies to show us inside their creative processes on a particular project. We want this insight to prompt you to really think about your own individual systems and processes and how you approach your work. Meet Kemet Worldwide, a Chicago-based subscription box service featuring African cuisines, that launched early last year. In their interview with ChicagoInno (written by our friend Tatiana Walk-Morris!) the service shared their mission to connect consumers with African culture through food, and support charities that uplift African communities. Take your dining experiences to a new level with Kemet Worldwide.

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How did you come up with the idea for this particular project?

I started cooking Nigerian food with my mother at a young age. Growing up in a Nigerian household was my biggest inspiration in creating this product because I love my culture and wanted to spread it to the masses.

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Why did you want to complete this project?

There aren’t many services that cater towards African cuisine and I wanted to give the cuisine the respect it deserves by highlighting the various foods that come from Africa. I hope that each person who tries our box gains an appreciation for a new culture, which inspires them to learn more about Africa and our rich culture.

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[Tweet "Meet @kemetworldwide, a Chicago-based subscription box service featuring African cuisines."]

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How did you plan out your work for this process?

I specifically chart out what goals need to be completed daily on a whiteboard. I draw everything out because it helps me visualize what I’m doing.

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How did you stay organized during this process?

I use a combination of writing thing downs on paper and Google Calendar to stay organized. When ideas start to flow, I capture them via Evernote. Google’s entire suite of apps like Gmail and Drive helped me keep everything in a central location.

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What were some of the challenges you faced during this process and how did you overcome them?

The most challenging part is product procurement for specific countries. We’re working to overcome it by developing partnerships with local African grocers in Chicago to find the specific ingredients.

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How will this project impact your bottom line and how do you see it making an impact on your business as a whole?

This project will have a positive impact on our bottom line and business, because we’re the only subscription box focusing on bringing African culture mainstream, it gives us a unique advantage by giving our subscribers a cultural perspective on these dishes that they would otherwise not experience.

Check out the video below for a little behind the scenes fun we had while unboxing their product. Video shot by Vo Universal, subscribe to his YouTube channel to show your support.

Try out their first box, the Nigerian box, on their site now. Follow the company on Twitter and Instagram and share your favorite African recipes!

Are you a small business interested in working with #blkcreatives to promote your product or service? Email us at work@blkcreatives.com

The (Ever-Growing) List of Books That You Should Have

Looking to step your productivity, personal development or business acumen? It starts with a book. Here's a (growing) list of books by Black leaders that you should read. (Have books you want to add to this list? Send us a tweet.)

Autobiographies, Fiction + Memoirs

A Deeper Love Inside: The Porsche Santiaga Story (Sequel To The Coldest Winter Ever) by Sister Souljah. But it here.

Crusade for Justice: The Autobiography of Ida B. Wells. Buy ithere.

Bliss by Danyel Smith. Buy it here and (BONUS!) read our interview with her here

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Buck: A Memoir by MK Asante. Buy it here

To Be Young Gifted & Black by Lorraine Hansberry. Buy it here

Twenties Unscripted: A Journey of Womanhood, Writing and Relavitiy by Tyece Wilkins. Buy it here.

Activity Books To Ease Your Mind

I Love My Hair: A Coloring Book of Braids, Coils, and Doodle Dos by Andrea Pippins. Buy it here.

Writing the Layers: A Self-Discovery Workbook by GG Renee. Buy it here.

Business Advice From Those Who Understand Your Fight

Building Atlanta: How I Broke Through Segregation to Launch a Biz Empire by Herman J. Russell. Buy it here.

Confidence Your Secret Weapon: A Guide to Building Confidence by Ashley Korin McLean. Buy it here.

Don’t Dumb Down Your Greatness: A Young Entreprenuer’s Guide To Thinking & Being Great by Anthony Frasier. Buy it here and (BONUS!) read an excerpt from the book here. You're welcome!

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anthony-frasier-my-creative-connection-#blkcreatives

Get Your Life! The Transforming Power of Turning Fate Into Fortune by Kareem Taylor. Buy it here and (BONUS!) check out our reviewhere.

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kareem-#blkcreatives-chat-my-creative-connection

How to Succeed in Business Without Being White: Straight Talk on Making It in America by Earl Graves (founder of Black Enterprise) Buy ithere

Make It Happen: The Hip-Hop Generation Guide to Success byKevin Liles. Buy it here.

Succeeding Against The Odds: The Inspiring Autobiography Of One Of America's Wealthiest Entrepreneurs by John H. Johnson (founder of EBONY and JET Magazine). Buy it here and (BONUS) read excerpts from the book by our Founder here. 

Think and Grow Rich: A BLACK Choice by Dennis Kimbro. Buy it here

Community Driven Work

This Ain’t Chicago: Race, Class, & Regional Identity in the Post-Soul South by Zandria Robinson. Buy it here.

When You're Ready To Get Real With Relationships (Either with someone else or yourself)

A Woman’s Quest To Self Love by Amber Janae. Buy it here.

Black Seeds: The Poetry and Reflections of Tariq Toure by Tariq Toure. Buy it here.

Let It Shine by Alyssa Cole. Buy it here

Dear Love: A love letter to you by Ashley M. Coleman. Buy it hereand (BONUS!) read her amazing advice to writers here.

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Oxygen by AsiahMae. Buy it here.

Put on Your Crown: Life-Changing Moments on the Path to Queendom by Queen Latifah. Buy it here.

SO SWEET: A Sugar Baby Novella by Rebekah Weatherspoon. Buy it here.

Words from a Wanderer by Alex Elle. Buy it here and (BONUS!) read our interview with her here.

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alex-elle-instagram-my-creative-connection-#blkcreatives

Have books you want to suggest or add to the list? Tweet us

10 Mentalities That Will Keep Creatives Broke

"Being broke" is not just a monetary position, it is a mindset. Everything that we create in our lives begins in the mind. Where we are and where we are headed is all shaped by the story we tell ourselves every day. Let's get unstuck by attacking the schools of thought that keep us stagnant.

10. You equate your value and your worth with money.

Now money is important but it's our perspective of it that can make or break us. Yes you may not have a lot of money at the moment but guess what? That doesn't mean you're not smart. That doesn't mean that things won't change. It doesn't mean that you're not a good person. It doesn't mean that you don't deserve to get what you want. It is a tool. And whether you have a small amount of tools or a large amount, you ALWAYS have something to work with. Even if it's just $5 there are things you can do to move yourself forward.  

9. You don't take yourself seriously.

You use words like 'aspiring' or 'trying' or 'thinking' instead of defining who you are, doing the work that fulfills that role and creating a plan that will help you execute. If you don't position yourself as someone to be taken seriously, why should anyone else? We set the intention of who we are before anyone else. 

[Tweet "We set the intention of who we are before anyone else. #blkcreatives"]

8. You consume someone else's information in place of taking the time to learn yourself.

The amazing thing about the Internet is that you can find information on ANYTHING you want to do. But the problem arises when we begin to step over what we know and replace that with an someone's insight. This can dampen our intuition. You have your own unique set of experiences that have taught you valuable pieces of insight about yourself and the world around you. Go back and think about your toughest times - what did they reveal to you? Acquiring knowledge is great but acquiring knowledge about who you are - your strengths and your weaknesses and how you operate can help you make the best decisions for YOU and your journey. 

7. You don't believe in yourself.

And because you don't believe that you can live the life you want to live, you release the power you have over your life. Talent and skillset will only get you so far. It's what you think about yourself that determines if you can sustain it. Those thoughts create accountability for the life you want to shape for yourself. Without any accountability, you lose out on owning your worth. And like Erica once told us on Twitter, "Success equals responsibility." 

[Tweet "success = responsibility - @Twelve45_ #blkcreatives"]

6. You spend so much time cheering on and investing in others, that you neglect to do the same for yourself.

As a result of that, you're drained, you're not making time to restore yourself and you're neglecting your needs. It's great to be supportive of others - in fact that's what we're about - but if you do at at the expense of losing yourself, you are already defeated. Your dreams need ALL of your energy, all of your mind, body and spirit to manifest. 

5. You think that where you are in your life right now is based on lack instead of timing.

"I don't have this amount of money because I didn't pick the right major in college." "I can't grow my business because I don't have any money." "I never have enough time to do what I really want to do." Sound familiar? If you're constantly thinking of what you do NOT have how are you going to make the best out of what you do have? For his recent feature on Complex Hustle, Julian Mitchell shared that "what you produce will always outweigh what's on your resume." That means you don't have to waste thinking about "what's missing" because all that matters is the work that you create. Work with your head down, knowing that everything happens when it's supposed to.

[Tweet "You have to trust the timing of your life. #blkcreatives"]

4. You don't ask for help nor do you express yourself. 

How are we supposed to know that you want to write a book if you're never writing anything? How are we supposed to know that you're looking for a new job if you never tell anyone? You'd be surprised at how simple, yet effective it is to speak about what you desire out loud. Talking about your work and sharing it on your personal platform makes you an expert at your ideas and opens up the doors for opportunities and collaborations. But that can only happen if you're vocal about them. Whether it's about love, opportunities, or money, this 'playing small' mindset doesn't serve you. If you don't do this, ask yourself right now, why am I afraid to say something? 

3. You seek validation externally. 

There's no amount of praise that will fulfill you, if you don't find that fulfillment within yourself. The challenge with letting other people, employers, lovers, and friends, validate you and what you stand for is that when they have to leave or the experience has to come to an end, what will you do? Success is often an internal effort. No one can achieve it for you, you have to define that level and reach it by your own actions. Your support system needs something to support. Don't confuse that principle by thinking that you need approval from any one or anything to be who you are called to be.

2. You underestimate the time it takes to become successful and quit on yourself too early. 

Change doesn't happen all of a sudden. It's your DAILY commitment to growth that makes a difference. You can't rush the process because every part of the process serves a purpose (whether we like it or not). So you think that one month, or several months or even several years means that you will automatically be successful but it takes time: Time to know yourself, time to test our ideas and projects, time to build connections and time spent actually working (not thinking, or planning) that will take you to the next level. That 10,000 hours theory is not a joke. In case you haven't read it yet, this book by Malcolm Gladwell breaks down it down for you. Entitlement won’t win the war but execution will.

1. You spend more time talking yourself out of something instead of doing the actual work.

When you begin to think all of the reasons why you shouldn't do something or why you can't do something, combat those thoughts with what you're capable of. What's in you is greater than anything you can face, just take the first step. 

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You Got The Juice: Why You Should Add Kareem Taylor's Book To Your Arsenal

click the pic to buy th e book!

click the pic to buy th e book!

"If it feels right, it's right. If it feels like it will make you better, it will. If you think it will take you higher, do it. If it's worth risking it all, try it out. If you doing it means that you'll be rewarded greatly, go and do it." - Kareem Taylor

What I love the most about this quote is that it forces the reader to be held accountable for their own decisions. The life that you want for yourself will not be created by anybody else other than you. Yes, we have access to countless resources through the click of a mouse but we must not forget that the real power lies within us.

That's what makes Kareem Taylor's  Get Your Life a must buy.

It's his ability to push you towards harnessing and leveraging your own greatness that sets it a part. He's not going to tell you what to do. He's just going to reveal to you the control that you already have.

How is he doing that? Through his story.

Los Angeles based Kareem is a professional speaker, writer and voice over actor and has launched national television commercial campaigns for CNN, Comedy Central, Sony Pictures Television, McDonald’s, RedBull TV, Comcast Xfinity and Taco Bell, among others but his most impressive accomplishment to date is creating a life for himself that is full of passion and purpose.

Born in Brooklyn seven weeks premature with crack cocaine in his system, Kareem doesn't just share his top tips on improving your quality and fulfillment of life, he shares how he's lived out what he's learned.

There are millions of authors and experts who share advice. But very rarely does that advice reflect our unique experiences as Creatives of Color. Many of us have different backgrounds than our counterparts. And while the insight shared by these said experts and authors can be helpful, there's something to be said about receiving info on how to live your best life from someone who's been where you are.

Themes in the book include making room for what matters, the ambition tax (success comes with a price, right?), pick your battle, focus on your strength, and even a practical section entitled 'how to use this book' all lend themselves to an incredible body of work that attacks the mentality behind living below your potential and helps you discover how you can move forward.

His truthful and honest exploration of what it takes to be successful only works because he's lived through it. That's what sticks and that's what carries this book beyond a self-help staple.

It's a real life guide for those willing to do the work as long as you remember that it all starts from within.

The book will be released on October 13th. Pre-Order your copy, watch the trailer, and read the first chapter here.

P.S. Looking for insight on building your own arsenal of tools that empower you? Read this interview here.

Connect with Kareem: Website - Order His Book - Twitter