The Power Of No

“No” and “Yes” are not opposites.

They are the two sides of the same coin.

Saying “no” feels restrictive. Rude. Some people say they feel guilty when saying no.

“Yes” feels more freeing. Less disappointing somehow.

This is a false dichotomy.

What matters is what you say “yes” to. Do you know what that is?

  • Saying “yes” to dinner time with the family.
  • Saying “yes” to your ideal practice.
  • Saying “yes” to breaks, meditation, naps, stretching and exercise.

Once you figure out what your “yes” includes, the “no” takes care of itself.

Saying “no” then is not about closing doors. Restriction. Disappointing others. Guilt.

Saying “no” becomes a tool through which you can say yes to the things that really matter.

Today, say yes to what matters, and no to what doesn’t. Without guilt, remorse, rudeness, or any form of restriction.

Remember, if it’s not a “hell yeah!”, it’s a “no”.


We’re curious to know one thing from you:

When it comes to business development and building your ideal practice, what’s the single biggest challenge, frustration or problem you’ve been struggling with?

Could you please tell us by clicking here?

Hell yeah! or no

It’s not so simple to choose between what’s worth including and what isn’t in your day.

If it was something truly undesirable (e.g. doing taxes–sorry accountants) and something truly desirable (e.g. date night), it would be easy to fill up our schedules.

But our days are filled with half-hearted 5s, 6s, and 7s in our work and life.

  • That committee that you “should” participate in, but has no pay off.
  • That event that you “should” go to, even though you’ve never gotten anything out of them in the past.
  • Hosting another panel, to ask the same soft questions and getting non-answers.

5s, 6s, and 7s (at best).

They give off the allure of important and useful, but not really.

Spend enough time in this zone, and our work and our life ends up being in the 5-7 range.

The alternative?

Say yes to just a few things.

The things that excite you, that moves you, that energizes you. That which truly matters.

Say yes to things that make you go “hell yeah!”

Otherwise, say no.

What are you saying “hell yeah!” to?


One thing that we hope you’ll say “hell yeah” to is giving us your advice.

When it comes to business development and building your ideal practice, what’s the single biggest challenge, frustration or problem you’ve been struggling with?

Could you please tell us by clicking here?

(this post has been inspired by musician Derek Sivers)

Skills, Networks, Stories

🛠️ Build your skills.

🌐 Build your network.

🕮 Share your story.

Your career success depends on all three of these.

Don’t make the mistake of focusing on only one or two. Think about ways you can build all three at the same time.

These three will make for a more satisfying career. If you wait until the stars align to do all three, you will never get to do it.

Ironically, the small investments you make in all 3 today will save you a lot more energy, time, and sanity in the long run.

What have you done today to invest in all three?

(credit goes to Quincy Larson of freeCodeCamp.org for sparking this post).


Do you have a minute to give us some advice?

We wanted to make sure we are covering the topics and issues that are going to be most helpful for YOU…

When it comes to business development and building your ideal practice, what’s the single biggest challenge, frustration or problem you’ve been struggling with?

Would you please CLICK BELOW to tell us so we can be sure to address your specific situation in our upcoming work:

Click here

Thank you so much!

Can we ask for your advice?

Today, we wanted your advice.

Our entire purpose with Build Your Book is to share ideas in our podcasts, emails, webinars, courses and more to help professionals like you to build a solid book of business, build a great practice, and consequently build a great life.

We’re working to put together something new, fresh, original, and more helpful.

We wanted to make sure we are covering the topics and issues that are going to be most helpful for YOU…

So our question to you is this:

When it comes to business development and building your ideal practice, what’s the single biggest challenge, frustration or problem you’ve been struggling with?

Would you please CLICK BELOW to tell us so we can be sure to address your specific situation in our upcoming work:

Click here

Thank you so much!

Our warmest regards,

Aaron & Dhawal

P.S. Question for you:

When it comes to business development and building your ideal practice, what’s the single biggest challenge, frustration or problem you’ve been struggling with?

Would you please click below to tell us?

Here’s the link:

Click here

Thanks so much!

Eating Your Way To Success

There is an easy way and a hard way to develop a good client base in the legal profession. The hard way is to work extremely long hours and be phenomenally good at what you do. I have met a few people who have done it this way, but not very many.

In fact, I have met some people who have done both of those things and still been reliant upon other lawyers to bring in the clients.

The easy way is to make friends. In my case, that meant three things – going to a lot of lunches, opening up to people and listening to them.

Accountants were my best source of referrals. I often said that I would rather go to 100 lunches with one accountant than one lunch with each of 100 accountants. After a few lunches with the same accountant, we would be friends and client referrals would flow. After one lunch with a new accountant, I was unlikely to recognize them if I passed them on the street a month later.

At each of these lunches I would talk about my personal life. For example, I would often share the story about how my domestic reorganization came about. Some of my lunch dates might react poorly to that – perhaps their marriage had ended in a manner similar to mine, and they did not want to be friends with someone who had done something like what their ex-spouse had done, or perhaps they just thought that personal things should be kept personal.

Others would react very well – happy to get to know me on a personal level and now feeling free to share things about their own lives.

But all of them would remember me because I wasn’t just another lawyer pitching them for their business and telling them that my fees were reasonable, and the quality of my work was great. Having related to potential referral sources or clients on a personal level often resulted in new client relationships.

As I have often coached junior lawyers, competence is usually assumed, especially by people who are not a member of the same profession. Typically, I assume that the doctors, dentists, and engineers who I meet are competent. In fact, the less that I know about their profession, the more likely it is that I will assume that they know what they are doing when I meet them. I am somewhat less likely to assume competence in an accountant because I have a better idea of what they do, and I am never going to assume competence in a lawyer unless I have had a good discussion with them about their technical knowledge and how they practice.

Since my potential referral sources and clients are often going to assume that I am competent unless I give them reason not to, they are likely going to choose me to be their lawyer based on other criteria, such as whether they like me when they meet me. And they are never going to know whether they like me unless they know something about my personal life.

Of course, I always had one or two “legal” things to share to prove that I wasn’t just a pretty face.

My conclusion, although admittedly based only on my own observations, is that those intensely private people who like to keep their personal and private lives separate or who believe that it is not appropriate to discuss personal matters with strangers, will have more difficulty establishing a good client base, no matter how competent they are. Of course, they can always try to do it the hard way, by working long hours and being brilliant.

None of this is to say that you can be incompetent and hold onto clients once you have attracted them. Eventually, the truth will out. However, sharing my life experience with interesting people was both fun and profitable, and a welcome break from drafting documents.

Finally, no story about marketing by having lunch can neglect to mention my personal lunch hero, an accountant at BDO who was famous for scheduling two lunches every day. Salad with the first client; main course with the second client. You know who you are.


Murray speaks about the legal profession from the safety of retirement, offers private courses in business law and mentors young lawyers. Learn more about him at Law & Disorder Inc.