The 2009 Holiday Gift Guide for the Unemployed

If you are home reading blogs, I congratulate you for not being out there buying toys, gadgets, acrylic throws, appliances, and cheese logs. Now we can consider carefully the needs of the person on your list who is unemployed.  You want to be helpful, you want to make a difference, you might want to reflect the spiritual reasons we celebrate in these short, dark days, so here are my top ten gift suggestions in no particular order:

1. A food basket that looks like a luxury, but contains essentials such as  fresh fruit, coffee or tea, and maybe a grocery store gift card  (especially for someone who is getting by on unemployment),
2. A great book with either an overview of the job search process or a focus on one particular aspect of it (arranged alphabetically by author, because they are all my favorites):

  • Anderson, Maureen, The Career Clinic: 8 Simple Rules for Finding Work You Love,
  • Bolles, Richard, What Color is your Parachute 2010?
  • Baber, Anne and Waymon, Lynne, Make Your Contacts Count (2nd edition)
  • Krumboltz, John and Levin, Al, Luck is no Accident
  • Taylor, Karol, and Ruck, Janet, Guide to America’s Federal Jobs.

3. A coffee or lunch date with you and a friend who happens to work in a field that interests the job hunter,

4. A debriefing after the next job interview, including a pot of tea (insert beverage of choice here) and you as a great listener,

5. An appointment with:

  • a very good hair stylist,
  • a computer coach,
  • a massage therapist,
  • a career counselor/coach,

6. A pay-as-you-go cell phone and/or prepaid phone cards for those who are suffering financially. It’s important to keep that cell phone operating to keep the job search current,

7. A classy accessory, such as a watch, pen, business card holder or cell phone cover that reflects the position to which the recipient aspires (doesn’t have to be expensive, just look it),

8. An invitation to a play, concert, or movie designed to (1) get one’s mind off the current situation  and (2) provide an intelligent answer to an interview question about what you have been doing recently,

9. A gift certificate to try a new career for a day.  Splurge on one of the offerings of Vocation Vacations (  This is a dazzling program that promises experience shadowing someone in a totally different career field.  Pricey and memorable.

10. A card or note reminding the job seeker that 2010 brings promise of an economic recovery and that this time next year, the world will seem very different. You can also use the card to list what you think are the person’s gifts that will be welcome in the  workforce.  It has been suggested that you could use a “Top Ten Reasons You Are A Gifted Employee” format.

Your gift of concern, support, and love will add a unique dash of sparkle to the season.

God bless us, everyone!

5 Responses to “The 2009 Holiday Gift Guide for the Unemployed”

  1. The 2009 Holiday Gift Guide for the Unemployed « Anne Headley's Blog | Mobile Wireless Phone Says:

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  3. gonzalee22 Says:

    No, a job is the best gift. The unemployed need jobs.

    #1 Job Search Method

    • anneheadley Says:

      You are right, and thanks for pointing it out. Most people are not in a position to hire, but I’m guessing all of us can offer support and encouragement to a friend or relative who is unemployed.

  4. Gabriela Says:

    Amazon always has something for everyone. A gift card is a secure way to ensure a person will get exactly what he or she want.The only thing is that it takes a week to get one through the mail. Give youself plenty of time ahead to order.

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