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  • Hey it's Marie Forleo and you are watching MarieTV, the place to be to create a business

  • and life you love, and this is Q&A Tuesday. Today's question comes from Tracy and she

  • writes:

  • "Hi, Marie. I'm starting to make a name for myself and my friends and strangers are coming

  • out of the woodwork asking if they can pick my brain or bounce ideas off me or grab a

  • coffee to ask me about my business and share their ideas. First of all, I feel like they

  • should buy my product -- a training program that would answer most of their questions,

  • but I don't want to seem money hungry or super 'salesy' with my friends. Second, I'm busy

  • building and running my own business and I don't have the time to spare. I'm not sure

  • how to deal with this so I've just been ignoring all the requests and feeling guilty. What

  • do I say to people who want to grab coffee or pick my brain?"

  • Tracy, this is a great question and something so many of us struggle with. I know it can

  • feel really uncomfortable to say "no," but when you ignore things like this, it completely

  • nags at you, you feel guilty as you've already said, and plus, all these requests eat up

  • a ton of your mental and emotional bandwidth. Remember that people are always grateful for

  • an honest answer especially when its delivered in a loving and compassionate way. And remember,

  • there's lots of ways that you can help people for free. For example, you can direct people

  • to blog content, you can do a set amount of pro-bono work, you can offer scholarships.

  • However, if you're starting to get bombarded with tons of requests from people to pick

  • your brain or meet for coffee and you don't want to do it, here are three scripts that

  • you can use.

  • Script #1 -- The "Spice Girl Script." "My work schedule is full so coffee is not doable

  • these days. Are you interested in becoming a client or do you just have a quick question?"

  • This makes the asker get real about what they really want from you. If they want to become

  • a client, you can direct them to your sales material, and if they have a question, they

  • know they'll need to be really quick.

  • Script #2 -- Pay Me Motherhumpa. Look, I know you don't want to seem overly 'salesy,' but

  • you've got to get that your experience and your expertise are valuable, plus, you deserve

  • to earn an honest living. My friend Todd Herman has this great analogy for brain pickers and

  • I think it could help shift your mindset. Here's how he puts it:

  • "Would you ever walk into a store, walk up and grab clothes off a rack and then walk

  • out without paying? Of course not because that would be stealing. So brain picker, don't

  • expect to walk into my head, grab everything you want and walk out without paying."

  • Here's a classy way of directing people to your product or program:

  • "I'm not available for lunch, but you should really consider getting my ____. It's all

  • of my best thinking in one place, and I created it to help people in your exact situation."

  • Or if you don't have a product or program, try this:

  • "I don't have time to grab a coffee unless we're doing it as an official business meeting.

  • And my charge for a consultation, if you're game, is ____."

  • Script #3 -- Blame it on mama. The toughest one can be when it's semi-social and they

  • want to grab coffee to get to know you, they want to network and likely pick your brain.

  • FYI, they WILL pick your brain, so you know how this goes. Well, what are you going to

  • say? "No, I don't have time for new friends?" Actually, yes, you are going to say that,

  • but here's a nice way to say it so you don't come across like an arrogant d-bag. If you

  • don't know what a d-bag is, I ain't going to tell you because I don't want to get yelled

  • at because there's a bunch of d-bags out there who love to yell at me.

  • "I have a rule. If I don't have time to see my mother, I don't have time to meet new people

  • for coffee, and right now, I owe my mama a visit. But seriously, I'm sure we'd have a

  • blast and I hope you're not insulted, but my work schedule is packed and I've got to

  • pass."

  • The bottom line is this, and you bet your buns it's a tweetable:

  • "If they want to pick your brain, ask them to pick a time and a method of payment."

  • Because at the end of the day, if you want people to value your time, you have to put

  • a value on it.

  • Tracy, that was my A to your Q. hopefully these scripts have helped. Now I would love

  • to hear from you. Do you have a go-to way to answer people who want to pick your brain

  • or take you out for coffee? Or have you ever been that person who's asking to take someone

  • out to coffee or pick their brain where you handled eloquently? I would love to hear your

  • story.

  • As always, the best discussions happen after the episode at so go there

  • and leave a comment now.

  • Did you like this video? I did. If you did, subscribe to the channel and share it with

  • your friends, and if you want even more great resources to create a business and a life

  • that you love, plus some personal insights from me that I only talk about in e-mail,

  • get your buns over to and sign up for e-mail updates.

  • Stay on your game and keep going for your dreams because the world needs that special

  • gift that only you have. Thank you so much for watching and I'll catch you next time

  • on MarieTV.

Hey it's Marie Forleo and you are watching MarieTV, the place to be to create a business

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How To Say No To People Who Want To Pick Your Brain

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    Vita posted on 2013/07/27
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