Bruce Anderson

State or Province:



what are your gifts and talents?:

Exploring ways to identify and give gifts beyond usual "strength-based" models.

why do you want to join abcd in action?:


Say Yes Five Times to Gifts

user image 2021-08-02
By: Bruce Anderson
Posted in: Reflections and Ideas

Say ‘Yes’ Five Times to Gifts


Bruce Anderson • Core Gift Institute

On the surface, it’s such a simple act to give a gift to another. We might lend a hand, or make a pie for a neighbor, or listen carefully to a child, or anything else we do that comes from a place of generosity, centered in who we really are. Yet each time we do so, just under the surface, there are five distinct but unspoken yeses we are agreeing to. These five yeses create the connection and hope that spring from gifts given and received.

The First Yes

Will you say ‘yes’ to coming from your best self?

Everywhere we look, there are signs that our world is in trouble. But what can we do? It’s in the nature of our gifts - those powerful, positive contributions which spring from our best selves - to respond to what is right in us and in the world. Each gift we offer helps us all to remember that this world is worth living in and living for. So, will you say yes to coming from your best self?

The Second Yes

If you are willing to come from your best self, will you also say ‘yes’ to belonging to us?

We want you! We want you to know that you matter to us. We will be less without your presence, like a jigsaw puzzle with a piece missing. So, will you join with us? Will you say yes to belonging to us?

The Third Yes

If you’ll belong to us, will you also say ‘yes’ to your uniqueness?

Sometimes, in our desire to belong, we act in ways that aren’t true to who we really are. We try to cover up our uniqueness so we won’t be noticed and will fit in. But your unique gifts are your most valuable calling card. In giving them, you offer a powerful contribution that only you can make. We need you for the unique things that make you, you. So, will you say yes to your uniqueness?

The Fourth Yes

If you’ll say ‘yes’ to your uniqueness, will you also eagerly say yes to the uniqueness in all of us? We need one another. When we all bring our gifts, together we have a collective abundance. There is no prize at the end of our path for aloneness. So, are you willing to sit in the comfort and strength that comes from giving up the feeling that you have to do it all yourself?  Will you say ‘yes’ to the uniqueness in all of us?

The Fifth Yes - the final and most important one of all.

Will  you say yes to gratitude?

Will you come from the humble place that acknowledges your gifts are more than the result of your hard work? That the seeds of your gifts were bestowed upon you and that your role is to hone them and re-gift them to the world? There is an awe that happens inside each one of us when we remember we are part of something much greater than our small—but vital—contribution to goodness. So, will you say yes to gratitude?

Together, these five yeses are the river that takes us home to our true selves, encouraging us to choose—over and over again—to live fully into our lives with others. They are the yeses that fill each gift given with love.

Reflection Questions


Which yes most attracts your energy as you read this? Why?

Which yes feels most comforting?

Which yes feels most challenging? What is the learning for you?