• Deric Hollings

Something's Missing

Updated: Sep 21


Photo credit, fair use

Earlier this morning, when performing so-called “toxic masculinity” behavior by challenging gravity to a vertical movement contest while working out, I heard a verse of a song that caused me to think.

In the song “Somethings Missing,” by Gutter Writers, featured on the album Community Action, it is stated:

“I feel like a fraction of my heart goes to family. The other pieces get broken up every day, randomly. I feel like losing those parts leads to insanity. A piece of everyone I carry makes me strong, rapidly. Maybe I’m missing the point. Maybe I’m missing the beat. Maybe I’m missing my friends who died in the street. Maybe I’m missing the pieces of my heart I gave away. Maybe I’m missing my workout on the day to day. Mind, body, and soul, the warrior trains in darkness. Steel sharpens steel, but you don’t have to be the smartest. Determination and heart are what’s missing from these artists. I use poison tips, you can’t feel where the dart hits. Hard work, persistence; something’s that’s missing. Self-esteem and confidence, something’s that’s missing. It’s inside of you, the strength to bear witness—the will to give it all, no matter what limits are given.”

This isn’t the emo or trap styles of rap, in which lyrics are generally easy for me to dismiss while micro-tearing muscle fibers, as “Somethings Missing” serves as underground rap that warrants my attention. This makes my supposed racist, colonialist, non-inclusive, and privileged workouts especially meaningful.

The aforementioned verse speaks to a number of psychotherapeutic elements—to include those related to Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT)—which I use with clients. These include:

· “I feel like a fraction of my heart goes to family. The other pieces get broken up every day, randomly.” – Separating individual versus shared roles

· “I feel like losing those parts leads to insanity.” – How to manage stress related to competing interests in life

· “A piece of everyone I carry makes me strong, rapidly.” – Building resilience in relation to adversity

· “Maybe I’m missing the point. Maybe I’m missing the beat.” – Assessing one’s belief system in a critical manner

· “Maybe I’m missing my friends who died in the street. Maybe I’m missing the pieces of my heart I gave away.” – Grief and loss

· “Maybe I’m missing my workout on the day to day. Mind, body, and soul, the warrior trains in darkness.” – Self-care

· “Steel sharpens steel, but you don’t have to be the smartest.” – Accepting the state of being good enough

· “Determination and heart are what’s missing from these artists. I use poison tips, you can’t feel where the dart hits.” – Addressing matters related to how little control we have in life

· “Hard work, persistence; something’s that’s missing.” – Personal responsibility and accountability

· “Self-esteem and confidence, something’s that’s missing.” – Unconditional acceptance versus self-esteem and confidence

· “It’s inside of you, the strength to bear witness—the will to give it all, no matter what limits are given.” – One’s ability to effect change

Perhaps I’m overthinking the verse. It very well could be that my participation in activities apparently linked to a “culture of whiteness” and “fat-shaming” has me confused, so I rationalize my behavior by projecting a positive perspective onto music so that I may escape my perpetration of a harmful lifestyle, bro.


At any rate, I find the elements of the “Somethings Missing” verse worth considering from a mental health perspective. Perhaps you, too, may benefit from the message.

For more information about my approach to REBT, I invite you to read my following blog posts:

· Desire and Disturbance

· Circle of Concern

· Mind Tricks

· Unconditional Acceptance

· Disturbing Democracy

If you have any questions, concerns, or comments about this form of therapy, or the services I offer, I encourage you to reach out using the contact widget on my website.

As a psychotherapist, and hip hop head from the old school, 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


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