By Susan Guillory

This holiday season, you’re likely putting attention toward buying gifts for your clients. But have you given any thought toward giving yourself (or your small business) gifts that will help you be a better entrepreneur? Here are 5 small business gifts you’ll be happy to have (certainly happier than getting yet another knitted reindeer sweater from Aunt Martha!).

1. Time

One of the reasons you started your own business was to be in charge and have a flexible schedule. But maybe you’ve gotten caught up in work and haven’t taken a day off in a while, or consistently work 12-hour days.

Give yourself the gift of time. Here’s how:

  • Block off one day a month (Or week! Even better.) and take a mental health day.
  • Hire an assistant to take on some of your tasks so you have more time.
  • Book your vacation for 2016 now.

2. Smart Software

Every business owner wants to minimize expenses, but consider that not spending money on some tools could keep you from growing or being more productive. Look at software like the following and assess which could be a real asset in 2016:

  • Customer relationship management software
  • Accounting software
  • Email marketing software
  • Project management software

3. State-of-the-Art Technology

I’m not proposing you top your desk with three giant $2,000 computer monitors, but if you’ve been limping along using outdated technology, it’s time for an upgrade. A newer laptop or desktop will process faster, helping you get your work done quickly.

Other technology that can help your business grow includes:

  • Smartphone
  • Tablet
  • Printer

4. Staff

I mentioned hiring an assistant in #1, but consider whether you could use even more help. If business has been booming to the point that you’re overloaded with work, gift yourself with employees. Having different people on board to handle different components of your business not only frees you up, but it also gets you experts in each facet of your business.

Here are some hiring options:

  • Intern
  • Freelance
  • Consultant
  • Part-time employee
  • Full-time employee

5. Education

You’re so busy working on your business, you probably don’t come up for air much. What skills do you feel you’re lacking? In 2016, give yourself the gift of education. Any investment you make in your business knowledge is one that will help your business grow. Here are a few ideas:

  • Take a webinar on social media
  • Read a book about accounting
  • Hire a leadership coach

Remember to put yourself at the top of your gift-giving list this year. Your business will thank you!