Your List of Unfinished Projects

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Pareto Realty TN #251071

Your List of Unfinished Projects

How many projects have you started . . . and not (yet) finished?

Why haven’t you taken the time to complete them?

When will you get around to finishing them?

Were they important to you when you started them?

Are they less important now because they’re less exciting than they were upon conception?

How do you feel every time you notice you have not finished these things?

Do you kick yourself and think: “I really SHOULD finish that . . . one day”?

Everything on this list is CLUTTER in your life. It’s distracting and detrimental to your productivity. This list is a terrorist in your mind holding a share of your mind hostage with the ransom of paying attention and committing to take the time to FINISH!

You’re shoulding on yourself, and that’s not OK!

If the unfinished things were important, you would probably have already completed them. Instead, you’ve chosen the path of mental self-incarceration.

Do something about this NOW!


Here’s how . . . Make a list of any and all of these projects which are in the purgatory of “started and not finished”.

With a clear head and your full attention, sort into 5 categories:

  • Procrastinate – Let it linger as “someday” and give yourself permission to be guilt free. These are things you will enjoy doing when you have the time.
  • Abandon – You HATE doing this and cannot fathom why you started doing this one in the first place.
  • Complete – AHA! This is something that is IMPORTANT and is already VERY close to being done. Do this IMMEDIATELY because all that’s left is crossing a few “t”s and dotting a few “i”s. There should only be ONE thing in this category
  • Tackle – This is an important thing that’s bigger than a “ToDo”. It’s a worthy project to work on over time. You already know how to do this and already have the tools and materials.
  • Delegate – This is important stuff that you do not have the foggiest notion as to how to do it, don’t have the appropriate tools, and will risk bodily harm to yourself and others attempting doing it yourself. (Think felling a 60′ tree that’s 30′ from the house) “Delegate” is a word that’s code for “I know how to do this, but I’m going to Hire a professional because I don’t have the time”.

You’re welcome!


Published by Barry Owen 

Strategist-CEO of Pareto Realty Real estate sales Professional Inviter-Facilitator-Practicer of Open Space Technology Opening safe space for people & organizations to self-organize around issues & opportunities BarryOwen.US Invite-Listen-Love 

Posted by

Barry Owen

Principal Broker
Pareto Realty
Nashville, TN

Call me: 615-568-2123
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Simply & BOLDLY Living the FourFold Way in Open Space!

Quintessentially connected to the real estate industry to offer the ultimate experience for Home Buyers and Sellers in Middle Tennessee . . . Inquire within!

Comments (20)

Realtyna Inc
Realtyna - Newark, DE
Realtyna- MLS RETS Integration software & services

Hi Barry Owen, great advice with so many applications!

May 12, 2020 02:36 AM
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning Barry. Thanks to shelter in place, the project list has been significnty shortened. Enjoy your day!

May 12, 2020 05:17 AM
Myrl Jeffcoat
Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Realtor - Retired

I seem to be better at completing projects today than I was in my younger years, when I was more attracted to the next shiny thing!  

May 12, 2020 01:41 PM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

May 16, 2020 07:18 PM
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667,, Broker/REALTOR® - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

Good advice.  I don't like having unfinished projects, so try to get one thing done before starting another. It doesn't always work out that way.

May 17, 2020 05:16 AM
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Good morning Barry Owen - really good information for people who want to be organized but can't get it started.

May 17, 2020 06:20 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Barry - the shoulda - coulda - woulda things on a to do list can cause clutter and otherwise be bothersome.  Does elimination solve the issue?  Or is it replaced by an 'out with the old and in with the new' approach? 

Hmm, yes I wonder.  Maybe too much.  

May 17, 2020 06:59 AM
Doug Dawes
Keller Williams Realty Evolution - Topsfield, MA - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor®

Hey Barry Owen What seems to happen is a "to do" project is started then you get diverted and create another project stemming from the "to do" at least for me, that's what happens

May 17, 2020 08:31 AM
Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Long & Foster Real Estate Inc 610-225-7400 - Devon, PA
Tredyffrin Easttown Realtor, Philly Main Line

Missed this post of yours and so glad Kathy featured it as it is a good reminder to clear our minds we need to clear our to do projects.

May 17, 2020 08:48 AM
Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

Great list of choices in the end there. Good post too.

Call it "over 50" wisdom, I do not let non-essential projects bother me. They get done when they get done. I've learned to give myself a break and some grace. Per your list, some just get abandoned for lack of priority or just hire it done. I only personally tackle joyful or profitable projects anymore.

May 17, 2020 11:29 AM
John Henry, Florida Architect
John Henry Masterworks Design International, Inc. - Orlando, FL
Residential Architect, Luxury Custom Home Design

Barry, I will need a personal trainer to push me to do this list properly!!! THANKS

May 17, 2020 02:05 PM
Kris Collis, Associate Broker
Smart Way America Realty - East Stroudsburg, PA
Professional Results you Expect 570-801-5525

Barry, nice option list for quickly deciding how to proceed especially with tasks we don't enjoy.  That list covers all the bases, will get a lot of use for sure.

May 17, 2020 02:49 PM
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
Retired New Hampshire Home Stager


It's rare that I have an unfinished project. Unless you count my husband's unfinished projects. LOL

He really doesn't have any to speak of either.  

Once I decide to do something I usually want it done yesterday and don't stop until it is done. 

May 18, 2020 07:15 AM
Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®
RE/MAX Platinum - Waukesha, WI
Giving Back With Each Home Sold!

Great post!  I can see why Kathy chose to highlight it this week!

May 18, 2020 07:25 AM
Bruce Hicks
Best Homes Hawaii - Honolulu, HI
Your Best Hawaii Realtor!

Got one for you Barry Owen "put it off until tomorrow, you've made enough mistakes today!"

May 18, 2020 09:05 AM
Laura Cerrano
Feng Shui Manhattan Long Island - Locust Valley, NY
Certified Feng Shui Expert, Speaker & Researcher

So many of us have lists of all the unfinished stuff we have regardless of where we come from. It’s unbelievable universal. :)

May 18, 2020 09:55 PM
Susan McCall - - Compass Realty Solutions
Compass Realty Solutions - Portland, OR
Listing and Buyer's Agent

I was getting stressed just reading your list!!

May 18, 2020 10:54 PM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

Great post!  Actually, this morning I've had my computer tech, painter and landscaper here working on projects.  Hire away! 

May 19, 2020 09:49 AM
Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes - Kansas City, MO
Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area

With extra time on hand during this pandemic,  I seem to procrastinate more about those projects.  Have completed some!  I do better when I'm busy, and have a daily 'to do' list.

May 20, 2020 08:28 AM
Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089
Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers - Haiku, HI
Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info

I really didn't need this today... but thanks for the reminder about those unfinished projects.

Jun 03, 2020 06:58 PM