Do you struggle to know what to ask people to get you for Christmas (or other occasions?) Or are you wondering what to buy for a freelancer in your life? If so, this new roundup of gifts for entrepreneurs will have you covered.
With Christmas just around the corner, I’ve updated this article to include some items I’ve personally invested in throughout the year. Unlike some such articles you see online, I’ve not merely picked out a random list of products in the hope you earn me a few pennies of commission! Items on this list come with my genuine recommendation.
I therefore hope you can use the list for some inspiration on what to buy the entrepreneur in your life. Or, if you like the look of something you see, perhaps send a loved one the link to this article along with a heavy hint!
Let’s get started:
Gadget Gifts for Entrepreneurs
I’ve Got the Power
Nowadays it seems impossible not to gather an ever-expanding collection of USB leads and chargers. Thankfully, USB power banks have finally matured and become more reliable.
This year, I invested in a really high-capacity power bank to allow me to charge all my devices while I’m on the go. It can do my phone, my earbuds, my e-cig and – since I upgraded to a Mac with USB-C – can even charge my laptop. I keep a small cloth bag in my main bag containing all the necessary leads, and it’s not exaggerating at all to say that having it has been a bit of a game-changer.
At a recent family party, lots of people needed to charge their iPhones and the table where my power bank was sitting soon became a hive of activity. It’s possible to plug more than one device in at once, and so long as the battery pack is fully charged at the start, it can charge devices many times over.
The exact model I chose is only available in the UK, so I recommend this as the closest thing with similar specs and great reviews. If you happen to be in the UK, here’s a link to the rather fetching blue model I’m carrying around.
It Must Be the Music
Have you given in and switched to wireless earphones yet?
I resisted for a long time, but my last pair reached the end of their useful life and I thought it was time to give in to the “new” tech. I have to admit it is liberating not getting tied up in cables whilst travelling, and I also now sometimes use them in bed to listen to podcasts about blogging!
The first pair of wireless earbuds I purchased was a cheap one, and it’s not a mistake I’d make again. The battery life was too short, and I experienced interference every time I walked through a busy area.
I ended up upgrading to the Sennheisers pictured above. The band means you don’t put them down and lose them if you take them out of your ears to pay for something in a shop. (This is something I just know I’d do if I bought the really expensive Apple ones!) The sound quality is great and the batteries last ages. I have noted some people criticise the microphone on them, so you may want to look into this if you make a lot of voice calls.
I accept that a new laptop may be a rather extravagant thing to ask for for Christmas, but I’m including the latest MacBook Air on this list for a few reasons:
First off, many people have been waiting for years for Apple to update their most “affordable” laptop model, and they finally have. Most reviews agree that the MacBook Air is the perfect Mac for the majority of people. My wife was one of the many people to finally “pull the trigger” on an upgrade when this model came out in the fall.This isn’t the place for a Windows vs. Mac debate (much as I enjoy them!) Yes, Apple kit is expensive, there’s no getting around that. However, for many freelancers the laptop is the key tool of their trade. The Macs in our house get more constant use than anything else we own, and I passionately believe that tech isn’t something freelancers should skimp on.
If you are in the market for a new computer, the new MacBook Air is definitely worth a look. My wife is delighted with hers. There have also been some decent price cuts since they first appeared.
There’s been a lot said this year about how much reading the world’s most successful people do. Good entrepreneurs and freelancers never stop learning, which means books on business and personal development are always good gifts for them.
Here’s a selection I’ve enjoyed:
The $100 Startup
I read a LOT of business / startup-type books, and often find as much to dislike as I find to like! I’m recommending this one because if provides plenty of real-life examples, and is one of those books that really inspires you by helping you to believe that anything is possible.
There’s plenty here to get stuck into, and it’s one of the gifts for entrepreneurs here that will work as well for novices as for veteran business people.
The Self Care Project
As discussed in my article on anxiety and mental health, I – like many people – endure occasional spells of depression in my life, and I went through a couple this year.
The Self-Care Project is a book I credit with helping to pull me out of my most recent low. It helped me deal with the guilt associated with taking the time I needed to get my mental health back where it needed to be.
Obviously I don’t relish the prospect of needing to turn to its advice again, but it’s reassuring to know it’s there. If you’re struggling with feeling down, uninspired and burned-out, it comes highly recommended.
Build your own Rainbow
This is a rather obscure choice; It’s a book I love from decades ago, and not especially easy to get hold of. However, there remains some availability on Amazon.
My mum actually bought me this many years ago when I was having a career crisis and couldn’t work out my next move. Its approach is based on loads of worksheets and exercises that really help you hone in on what’s important to you, what you enjoy doing, and how to turn all of it into a career. “Build your Own Rainbow” is a book that really helped me, and I’m confident it will help anyone else who is at a crossroads or unsure of what to do in the future. (This article is good for that too!)
Thinking Outside the (Gift) Box
Gifts don’t have to involve something to unwrap. In fact, if you’re struggling with what to get (either for yourself or for someone else), it’s perhaps worth thinking about some other ideas. Gifts don’t have to be gadgets or books – they can be skills, experiences, or even new projects to get excited about.
Every Day’s a School Day
If you (or the lucky freelancer in your life) wants to enhance their skills, then courses make a great gift.
Why not start by looking at our most recommended Udemy courses for freelancers? Udemy allows you to buy courses as gifts, and often has good promotions in place, making the courses very affordable.
Alternatively, If you know what the freelancer in your life would enjoy training in, you could treat them to a course on Coursera or eDx with a verified certificate. Or, you could sign them up to Lynda.com to give them unlimited access to courses in the months ahead. (You’ll find a detailed review of Lynda.com here if you want to find out more.)
Making Things Happen
If you know someone who’s always talking about starting a blog or website project, why not treat them to their first year of web hosting and buy them the ProBlogger book to get their creative juices flowing?
Or, if it’s you that keeps meaning to kick off a new project, and you’re stuck to know what to ask for from somebody, why not ask for the things you need to get things going? This article will help you learn what you need.
Coaching and Mentoring
I’ve deliberately placed this idea low down in the article as I’m not making too much noise about it! However, I will be doing a small amount of one-to-one mentoring next year, and running some blogging workshops.
At the time of writing I’m almost ready to launch a new site that describes the services on offer, but not quite. However, if being part of an exclusive blog workshop or having some mentoring appeals to you, or seems like a good idea as a gift for a loved one, I’d be happy to share what will be on offer and make arrangements for this to be purchased as a gift. I’ll even make you a pretty voucher 🙂
There are strictly limited slots for this, so please contact me direct if it’s of interest.
Something More Traditional
With everybody’s lives so centred on laptops and digital devices, people can go weeks without writing anything with an “old school” pen. But like many people, I find that sometimes only a notepad will do. I find them particularly useful when I’m brainstorming new ideas.
There are no finer notebooks than the Moleskine range. There’s loads of choice, they ooze quality, and are always well-received by people who appreciate high-end items.
The Gift of Better Air
This gift idea is a more extravagant one, but it’s perfect for people who work from home. Freelancers often spend an awfully long time shut away working, so a gift that makes the air around us clean and fresh is definitely a good thing!
You can get all kinds of Dyson Air Purifiers, even models that have integrated WiFi and report back on your air quality! If the beloved entrepreneur in your life likes to keep their office space spick and span, this is the perfect gift.
A Few More Gifts for Entrepreneurs
Freelancers are usually easy to buy for; We love anything that furthers our working goals. So if nothing on my list has grabbed your attention, you’ll find dozens of freelancing books to choose from here. Or perhaps you could go for a flash new laptop bag for work trips, or a new coffee maker for the home office?
Whether you’re looking for a small “stocking filler” or a “main present,” hopefully this article’s helped you find something appealing for the entrepreneur in your life – or given you a steer on what to ask for for yourself!