top of page
  • Writer's pictureDeric Hollings

I Go to Work

 

When I was a child in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s, there were certain hip hop artists who were approved of by the adults in my life, because their lyrics weren’t overtly sexual or violent. Lyricist Kool Moe Dee was one of those artists.

 

On his 1989 album Knowledge Is King – which was one of the foundational anthologies that shaped my worldview as a child – Kool Moe Dee featured a song entitled “I Go to Work.” Brass instrumentation used on the track was unlike anything I’d heard in a rap song during that era.

 

At a time when I was a resident in a children’s home and experienced agony as a result of my beliefs about how unfair I thought life was, “I Go to Work” was a song I used for motivation to carry on despite the pain I caused myself through unhelpful narratives. Lyrics of the last verse state:

 

To say rap is not work is ludicrous

Whoever said it must be new to this

When you hear me, you’ll compare me

To a prophet for profit, not merely

Putting words together for recreation

Each rhyme’s a dissertation

You wanna know my occupation?

I get paid to rock the nation

I go to work

 

I was recently asked to explain how I differentiate between a rapper and a lyricist. Lyrical content from a lyricist like Kool Moe Dee can be dissected and studied for years, though a rapper’s words are little more than dust in the wind to me – here for a moment and fading quickly.

 

When Knowledge Is King was released I had no concept of Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT). Instead, I thought that trauma endured throughout childhood resulted in the misery I experienced. However, I was wrong.

 

REBT theory uses the ABC model to illustrate how when Activating events (“Actions”) occur and people maintain irrational Beliefs about the events, these unhelpful assumptions – and not the actual occurrences – are what create unpleasant cognitive, emotive, bodily sensation, and behavioral Consequences.

 

Therefore, from a psychological standpoint, people disturb themselves using a Belief-Consequence (B-C) connection. Of course, this isn’t to suggest that in the context of the naturalistic or physical world there is no Action-Consequence (A-C) connection.

 

Furthermore, this helpful psychotherapeutic modality uses the technique of unconditional acceptance to relieve suffering. This is accomplished through use of unconditional self-acceptance (USA), unconditional other-acceptance (UOA), and unconditional life-acceptance (ULA).

 

Enduring childhood trauma (Action) wasn’t what created my agonizing experience (Consequence). Rather, my use of demandingness, awfulizing, low frustration tolerance, and global evaluation beliefs led to misery (B-C connection).

 

In an interview, the late psychologist Albert Ellis discussed the process of self-disturbance and how to alleviate suffering. Ellis stated:

 

The insight that I made myself disturbed – I foolishly listened to my mother and father, and took them too seriously…and I’m still doing it and that now I require work and practice, work and practice to give up my biological and sociological tendency to disturb myself – that will help you, not the belief that I disturb myself and that I don’t have to. That’ll help, but not that much.

 

According to Ellis, merely believing that you disturb yourself and that you don’t have to isn’t enough. As Kool Moe Dee advocated, going to work is necessary in regards to REBT. Regarding this insight, in a blogpost entitled Understanding, Belief, and Practice, I stated:

 

I encourage clients to frequently practice REBT—especially outside of our sessions. When negotiating homework with clients, I emphasize the work element of a task. Working with tools at home—which is essentially any area outside of session—is how clients sharpen (practice) their tools.

 

Many years ago, I learned about the importance of work. Kool Moe Dee motivated me to apply myself so that I could tolerate suffering. Now, I go to work on REBT in my personal and professional life. If you would like to know more about work of this sort, I’m here to help.

 

If you’re looking for a provider who works to help you understand how thinking impacts physical, mental, emotional, and behavioral elements of your life, I invite you to reach out today by using the contact widget on my website.

 

As the world’s foremost old school hip hop REBT psychotherapist, I’m pleased to help people with an assortment of issues from anger (hostility, rage, and aggression) to relational issues, adjustment matters, trauma experience, justice involvement, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and depression, and other mood or personality-related matters.

 

At Hollings Therapy, LLC, serving all of Texas, I aim to treat clients with dignity and respect while offering a multi-lensed approach to the practice of psychotherapy and life coaching. My mission includes: Prioritizing the cognitive and emotive needs of clients, an overall reduction in client suffering, and supporting sustainable growth for the clients I serve. Rather than simply helping you to feel better, I want to help you get better!

 

 

Deric Hollings, LPC, LCSW


 

References:

 

AEI. (n.d.). About Albert Ellis, Ph.D. Albert Ellis Institute. Retrieved from https://albertellis.org/about-albert-ellis-phd/

Goldfine, S. (2023, October 9). TIR 109: Rap legend Kool Moe Dee tells how he went to work [Image]. Funknstuff. Retrieved from https://funknstuff.net/tir-koolmoedee/

Hollings, D. (2022, November 18). Big T, little t. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/big-t-little-t

Hollings, D. (n.d.). Blog – Categories: Tools. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/blog/categories/tools

Hollings, D. (2022, October 31). Demandingness. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/demandingness

Hollings, D. (2022, March 15). Disclaimer. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/disclaimer

Hollings, D. (2023, September 8). Fair use. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/fair-use

Hollings, D. (2023, October 12). Get better. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/get-better

Hollings, D. (2023, September 13). Global evaluations. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/global-evaluations

Hollings, D. (n.d.). Hollings Therapy, LLC [Official website]. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/

Hollings, D. (2023, May 18). Irrational beliefs. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/irrational-beliefs

Hollings, D. (2023, September 19). Life coaching. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/life-coaching

Hollings, D. (2022, December 2). Low frustration tolerance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/low-frustration-tolerance

Hollings, D. (2023, March 20). Practice. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/practice

Hollings, D. (2023, September 15). Psychotherapeutic modalities. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/psychotherapeutic-modalities

Hollings, D. (2022, March 24). Rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT). Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/rational-emotive-behavior-therapy-rebt

Hollings, D. (2022, November 1). Self-disturbance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/self-disturbance

Hollings, D. (2022, October 7). Should, must, and ought. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/should-must-and-ought

Hollings, D. (2022, November 9). The ABC model. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/the-abc-model

Hollings, D. (2022, December 23). The A-C connection. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/the-a-c-connection

Hollings, D. (2023, September 6). The absence of suffering. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/the-absence-of-suffering

Hollings, D. (2022, December 25). The B-C connection. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/the-b-c-connection

Hollings, D. (2023, February 16). Tna. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/tna

Hollings, D. (2022, November 15). To don a hat. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/to-don-a-hat

Hollings, D. (2022, July 11). Unconditional acceptance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/unconditional-acceptance

Hollings, D. (2023, March 11). Unconditional life-acceptance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/unconditional-life-acceptance

Hollings, D. (2023, February 25). Unconditional other-acceptance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/unconditional-other-acceptance

Hollings, D. (2023, March 1). Unconditional self-acceptance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/unconditional-self-acceptance

Hollings, D. (2024, January 16). Understanding, belief, and practice. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/understanding-belief-and-practice

Kool Moe Dee. (2018, January 25). Kool Moe Dee - I Go to Work [Video]. YouTube. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/VDFx8hJY5x8?si=62FIHQIEXcI2vSS6

ThinkingAllowedTV. (2010, August 21). Albert Ellis: A guide to rational living - Thinking Allowed DVD w/ Jeffrey Mishlove [Video]. YouTube. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/GyRE-78g_z0?si=TeMBO0t4yJcJTcE0

Wikipedia. (n.d.). Knowledge Is King. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knowledge_Is_King

Wikipedia. (n.d.). Kool Moe Dee. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kool_Moe_Dee

0 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page