Rise of the Overextended Class

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In August of 2009, Hugh McLeod posted about the concept of the Overextended Class and at the time, this post resonated with me and what I was feeling. In fact, I’m still very much feeling it. For those of you that don’t want to click on the link to Hugh’s post, I understand – it can be scary, the overextended class is simply someone doing WAY too much. Because you love what you do. Now this is where I’d like to make an important distinction or better yet, I’ll let Seth Godin make it for me; Busy does not equal important.

To be considered a member of the Overextended class, you must be passionate about all of the things you’re doing. (If you’re not. Stop doing them. Now!) I’m doing many things and won’t list them out because they’re only really important to me. (Feel free to contact any of my friends who’ve been foolish enough to email me with the line; What are you up to? Included in the email and they can attest to the long list of things I’ve gleefully admitted committing to.) I also really believe that it’s the Overextended Class that will drive the future economy.

When Hugh first posted this I thought not only do I know how he feels, I know many others that are feeling the same. Again, gleefully over committed. So in my free time I even went as far as creating a couple of logos (to the right: Ox = Overextended / Snorkel = underwater) and a manifesto (shown below) to represent those lucky members of the overextended class. At the time, I thought people could put these logos on their site to proudly show that they were incapable of saying no to doing things they were passionate about, but in the end I didn’t do anything with them. Why? I got too busy . . .

To be a member of the Over-extended class you must pursue a diverse array of endeavors with passion, vision, tenacity and a certain level of blind naivety. Only through this pursuit can one address their schizophrenic need to do everything at the cost of sleep, family and fun.

1 comment

  • Lack of sleep… check. Lack of family time… check. Lack of fun… now wait a minute. To quote earlier in the post: ” you must be passionate about all of the things you’re doing. (If you’re not. Stop doing them. Now!)” I may be alone here, but if you are engaging in something you are passionate about chances are you are having fun. Passion and fun are, IMHO, virtually interchangeable here.

I’m an Associate Teaching Professor of Digital Marketing at the Daniels College of Business, University of Denver. I also consult with startups and established brands. I’m currently focused on artificial intelligence, cognitive neuroscience and culture. I am married to an amazing woman and have two incredible children. I was raised in Colorado and spend my free time with family, cycling, snowboarding and going to the Pacific Ocean to SCUBA dive + surf. I’m passionate about architecture, design, street art, photography and the art that tattooing has evolved into.

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