Understand your real intentions and state them. This transparency works for any project when others are involved to produce the project or to purchase the project.
I have a friend who will want to talk and he'll tell me why. Often he's asking for me to just listen while he talks something through out loud. By stating his intention, it makes it easier for me to understand what I'm asked to do and decide if and when I can participate.
From anecdote: how to give directions without telling people how to suck eggs.