Personal development and productivity are on a lot of people’s minds around this time of year.
Whether it’s because they’re reviewing the year behind or looking forward to the one ahead, your friends and loved ones very well may be thinking of how they could do a little better in 2016.
And if you want to help them out, these nine gifts are great ways to be supportive!
Journaling is a great exercise, but not everyone has the patience to write out reflections long-hand, or even in short form. Listography is like a journal, but it’s made completely of lists, and aimed at helping you write down important things and moments from your life (it’s pitched as a sort of highly compact autobiography).
The highlight of the lists are the hilarious illustrations which should help to motivate your moods as well. In fact, the pages are so pretty, they will compel you to write your lists more thoughtfully.
Give the gift of memory this year with Listography!
Did you know that doodling can be a highly creative and beneficial activity?
Whether your friend or loved one is a doodler, a list maker, a note taker, or just someone who likes to have a pen in their hand, the Boogie Board Jot is a cool, fun way to let them jot as much as they want without using up paper. The writing tablet is great for drawing, leaving reminders, making and tracking lists, and saving notes to your phone with the Jot app.
The included stylus can even be used as a stand for displaying your creations and ideas. Or you can just use the magnets to mount the doodle board for display.
Gratitude and Bucket List Journals ($15–25)
Another great journaling or list-making gift, these handmade, twine-bound journals are great for helping people keep what’s important in mind, whether that’s what they’re hoping to accomplish in their lives or what they’re grateful for already having.
Both can be personalized with the recipient’s name, making it an even more personal gift. The Twine Bindery shop on Etsy also has a lot of other cool paper products that make awesome gifts, too.
A lot of uber productive people in history have taken advantage of the early morning hours to get things done (here are a few examples). If you know someone who has trouble getting up in the morning but would like to be one of those people, the Lumie Bodyclock’s sunrise simulation will be a big help.
A gentle sunrise full-spectrum lamp, FM radio, and six different sleep sound effects that includes white noise to lull you to sleep at night makes this a great sleep-cycle enhancer. (I used a Lumie lamp to fend off seasonal affective disorder while living in England, and I can vouch for how awesome they are.)
If you’re feeling rather crafty, you could actually make your own sunrise alarm and give it as a gift!
It seems almost cliché to put this on the list, but this book is a a perennial bestseller for a good reason. With useful real-life advice on how to change your perceptions, manage your time, act with initiative, and think positively, this book will help anyone on their quest to become a better person, whether they’re just starting their personal development quest or they’ve been working on it for a long time.
Habit 1: Be Proactive
Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind
Habit 3: Put First Things First
Habit 4: Think Win/Win
Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood
Habit 6: Synergize
Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw
~ Stephen R. Covey
Agendio Custom Planner ($35– $45)
A custom planner can be a big help to anyone trying to get and stay organized. Agendio’s planners come in three sizes and multiple formats, and each page can be customized with different types of labels, checkboxes, lines, lists, schedules, and other sections you need to make a planner that contains absolutely everything you need.
You probably won’t know what your friend or loved one will want in their planner, so you may want to give them the gift of cash to be used for an Agendio planner (at least until Agendio starts offering gift cards, which I’m told will be soon).
Bend Your Brain ($11)
This book of brain puzzles from Marbles (one of the greatest stores of all time) will keep your friend or loved one’s brain in great shape. Part of personal development is learning to think in new ways and to flex mental muscles that haven’t been used in a while, and Bend Your Brain will do just that.
The puzzles in this book focus on the five key brain categories: visual perception, word skills, critical thinking, coordination, and memory. Give the gift of better brain function this year!
Ebook Subscription (~$120)
You’ve probably noticed that many of the personal development and productivity gifts listed are books — that’s because reading is an absolutely great way to improve oneself! If you don’t know which book to get as a gift, or you want to go beyond just giving a single book, an ebook subscription is a great gift.
There are a number of different services to choose from—check out the article linked above and choose the one that seems best.
Help Friends or Loved Ones with Your Gift
Sometimes the best gifts help their recipients help themselves. In this case, they’ll help your friend or loved one on their quest to be a better person. Whether that means being more educated, more disciplined, more organized, or just more productive, these gifts will help.
What are your favorite personal development gifts this year? Will you be giving any gifts like these? And what’s on your own Christmas list? Share your ideas in the comments below!