“Tripping on Existence” – Song 2 – Enneagram 6 Songwriter – Analyzing Lyrics – Themes of Belonging and Security

In my 2nd song, we see an official embracing of the “counterphobic” aspect of my Enneagram 6 personality; identifying as a person who faces my fears, instead of running from them. Specifically, I am disassociating myself from the general population of people who I realized I no longer needed to give my time, energy, money, emotions, and attention to.

It was me officially and knowingly beginning my journey of emotional intelligence.

I recorded this song on October 28th, 2019. At that point in my life, both my salary and my wife’s had doubled; as we had both began working at different employers.

We had recently paid off all our debts and moved into a brand-new, bigger house in the perfect neighborhood. For the first time in my marriage and career, we were not in debt.

These events triggered an “existential crisis”, which I am still working through. Since then, I have felt like I suddenly climbed to the top of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs pyramid.

Granted, much of my identity will always be wrapped up in “love/belonging”. But ultimately, I have been living in the “self-actualization” phase for a few years now.

The lyrics of “Tripping on Existence” serve as a clear realization of my sudden introduction of my existential crisis- or as some would say, “mid-life crisis”:

“Hi, I don’t care, thanks – I unplugged from existence, at least the version from before – I switched of the breaker – I don’t care if I’m hated, or even worse ignored – I wish I was here – I’ve been gone too long, I’ve begun to disappear – I can’t relate – I’ve seen too much, this is my escape – The best way to explain this: I’m tripping on existence – A dream inside a dream – An alternate dimension – I guess that I should mention – You can borrow my spare key – I am phoning home – But years have passed, now the number’s changed – So what happens next? Expect a reboot, then get born again”

So looking back on this song I wrote nearly 4 years ago, can you see the Enneagram 6? Can you see my longing for security and confirmation of my own existence?

Feel free to leave a comment. I’d love to hear your thoughts!

And now you can listen to the song, below, if you wish:

 

“Maybe It’s a Dream” – Song 1 – Enneagram 6 Songwriter – Analyzing Lyrics – Themes of Belonging and Security

Since 2014, I have written over 60 songs that I have published on my YouTube channel.

This past year, I dove deep into understanding myself better than I ever have before. I became certified as an Enneagram coach, which has ultimately been my own personal equivalent of experimenting with a revealing psychedelic like ayahuasca.

I am officially a Counterphobic Enneagram 6 Wing 7, Sexual/Social Subtype.

Ultimately, here’s the breakdown: I find meaning in life by seeking security through building and maintaining relationships with people; which ultimately makes me feel like I exist. I am constantly looking for what might go wrong with the situation, so that I can either prevent it, or go down with the ship and learn from it. And despite living in constant anxiety, I face my fears head on. I am the loyal skeptic, which is ultimately a paradox: Both an introvert and extrovert; both a pessimist and an optimist.

So in addition to now understanding my fundamental psychological operating system, there is also the fact that when I write a new song, it draws out of me, subconscious thoughts I am often not aware of.

I am excited and curious to start turning my lyrics inside out. Let’s start with the very first song I published on my YouTube channel: “Maybe It’s a Dream.”

I originally wrote it on January 11th, 2014; when I was 33 years old. However, I didn’t actually record it until April 16th, 2018; just 4 days before my 37th birthday. (I’m 41 now.)

In hindsight, I don’t like the way I performed this song. The key is too low and I over-pronounce the words.

But ultimately, through this new series of unpacking the psychology of all the songs I’ve written, one by one, I want to finally focus on the true poetry of my lyrics, as opposed to simply the musical aspect.

Here are the lyrics to “Maybe It’s a Dream”:

I am a skeleton with meat on my bones – I walk around with secrets nobody knows – I am a figment of my own imagination, I bet – It’s all, it’s all, in my head – Seven billion people ride a planet that spins – A thousand miles an hour and I’m just one of them – Another stranger who’s no stranger than all the rest – It’s all, it’s all, in my head – It feels like no one knows me anymore – And I start to think that I’m safer when ignored – My head’s in the clouds but my feet are on the ground – So tell me now, where can I be found? It’s like a dream where I can’t stop falling from the bottom to the top – Maybe it’s a dream where I’m drowning out a sea – I’m coming up for air – But is this even real? My thoughts are captive and I’ve swallowed the key – I’ve locked myself out of the world so it seems – My perspective of reality will die with me – It’s all, it’s all make believe – With these distractions it’s so hard to exist – It’s survival of the mentally fittest – I’m still standing here so I guess I know that this means – It’s all, it’s all in my head 

So looking back on this song I wrote nearly a decade ago, can you see the Enneagram 6? Can you see my longing for security and confirmation of my own existence?

Feel free to leave a comment. I’d love to hear your thoughts!

And now you can listen to the song, below, if you wish:

 

Dear Jack: The Special Song I Wrote for You for Your 11th Birthday- “Have a Good Life”

11 years old.

 

Dear Jack,

We had a spend-the-night birthday party for you the weekend of Halloween.

As I watched you interact with the four friends you chose to stay over, I felt like I was literally watching you grow up.

It inspired me to write this song- just for you:

I want you to have a good life/I want yours to be even better than mine/I’ve watched you travel through time/I’ve been beside you, tried to guide you through this ride you take me on/Have a good life, even better than mine

I can always remember when I was your age/Thirty years’ difference though most is the same/ I’ve been where you are, it’s really not that far/Every year of your life I put myself in your place/ So familiar it’s strange, though the backdrop has changed/I’ve been where you are, it’s really not that far

No one can love you the way that I can/I look at you and I see who I am/Half of you is me and will always be/When I move on to the life after this/Remember my love for you all of these years/Half of you is me and will always be

Love,

Daddy

How My Song “Dudes From Different Latitudes” Surprisingly Ended Up Being on Lifetime’s “This Time Next Year” (Lyrics Included)

Even though I was just one of 6 guests featured on the Episode 6 of “This Lifetime Next Year”, the episode was actually named after the song I wrote for my 7 minute segment of the show. Here’s what’s interesting though: That song was more of an accident, an afterthought, and a shot-in-the-dark attempt to introduce the world to my jingle-writing abilities.

Since I found my doppelganger earlier on in the year, yet I was still expected to keep submitting weekly video diary entries for my journey, I decided to have a little fun. I figured, “Hey, if I’m going to be on national TV, then I might as well make everyone aware I have a special talent of writing theme songs and jingles. This is my big chance…”

So I wrote a theme song for my portion of the episode and submitted it to my producer that week.

Then about a week of wondering if anyone had even seen it, the producer was asked me to bring my guitar to perform the song on stage in front of the audience, for the final recording of the episode.

For the next couple of months, I practiced that song until it became muscle memory. It was important to me that I sang perfectly on key, on rhythm, and didn’t need a 2nd take when it was recorded for the show.

Fortunately, my obsessive practice paid off and I was very pleased with the performance.

And here’s what’s funny to me about all this:

The whole episode was about me meeting my doppelganger, yet the majority of the feedback and the hype I’ve been receiving online from people who have seen my episode has been more about the song that I wrote and performed about actually meeting my doppelganger.

And apparently, the producer of the show recognized that the song was important, because not only was the episode named after the song, but the thumbnail they chose to promote the episode on their website is of me playing the song.

I am happy that the world now knows about talent for writing theme songs. This is not my first go at this.

Back a few years ago, I wrote and performed the theme songs for both of my children’s series on YouTube:

Jack-Man

Uncle Nick’s Enchanted Forest 

My inspiration for the title of the song, by the way, was Jimmy Buffett’s 1977 song, “Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes”. Because after all, British Columbia in Canada is undeniably a different latitude than Tennessee.

So yes, the song was the result of me deciding to make things a little extra exciting for my 7 minutes of fame. It was a plan that came together and turned out even better than I had hoped.

I guess “Dudes From Different Latitudes” became an unexpected hit!

Here are the lyrics:

Perfect strangers, doppelgangers, it was just their fate

A soup package, a text message, a Facebook friend request

Dudes from different latitudes, Canada and America

Same face from another place, identical twins but they’re no kin

Dudes from different latitudes

 

dad from day one: Proud Papa

Twenty weeks.

*Did you hear about this blog from American Baby magazine?  If so, click here to get to the main page (table of contents) for “dad from day one”.  There’s a whole lot more where this come from…

During the closing credits of my favorite movie of all time, I Love You, Man, Barry (Jon Favreau) finds out his wife Denise (Jamie Pressly) is pregnant after she vomits on him at the wedding reception.  With puke on his shirt, he says to her, “Please, try to make it a boy.”  Barry is a Type A jerk, inhabiting every memory and idea of a typical beer-guzzling frat boy.  So of course, having a boy (instead of a girl) would be very important to him.

Being that I’m nothing like that character in the movie, instead being much more like the main character, Peter Klaven (Paul Rudd), I had just always assumed I would have all daughters.  Here’s the picture I had in my head of my future family: Me, wifey, three daughters, and two Cockapoos (or Labradoodles).

It just makes more sense that a guy who has no interest (or talent whatsoever) in sports or hunting (or anything proving I’m man enough by showing my “game face”), but instead has always been enthralled in everything artistic (drawing, entertaining, acting, singing, songwriting, writing) would somehow automatically make a better father to daughters instead of sons.  So that’s part of the reason I was so authentically surprised to learn that our baby is a boy.  Like somehow I deserved a son less because I’m not a certain macho stereotype I’ve memorized from three decades of watching sitcoms and movies.

And now, I have to admit, there’s a part of me that can’t help but laugh that without any preconceived hopes or crossed fingers, I get what every man secretly hopes for- a son.  There’s an unspoken concept (at least in my mind) that raising a son is a rite of passage for a man.  A coveted elective course, a special honorary badge, an engraved trophy so easily received- to be a father to a son.  A chance not so much to relive my own life, but to enhance another future man with all the life experience and knowledge I’ve learned the hard way.

The movie I Love You, Man is built around the fact that male friendships and bonds don’t often come so easily.  By a man having a son, he is automatically given that opportunity- to nurture a male the way every boy and man craves to be taught and directed.  What I lack in knowledge of fixing cars and football statistics and home repairs, I can make up for in teaching healthy communication skills and anything that falls under that categories of “literary”, “artistic”, “psychological”, and “entertainment”.

In other words, I have a feeling I will be raising  the likeness of a future Jewish comedic actor, maybe the next Joseph Gordon-Levitt, the next Shia LaBeouf, the next James Franco…

A well-rounded people-person who is confident in who he is, that’s who I predict he will become.  Who knows?  Maybe he’ll be a quiet, mild-mannered, studious, future accountant.  But with a dad as quirky and Hawaiian-shirt-wearing as me, I just don’t think he has a chance of being anything like Clark Kent.

Baby Jack's body is the length of a cantaloupe this week.

Here’s what The Bump says about Week 20:

Baby’s digestive system is busy creating meconium (a tarry black substance made of swallowed amniotic fluid, digestive secretion and dead cells), which will fill the first diaper after birth. And, speaking of the diaper situation… baby’s genitals are now fully formed!

To return to the “dad from day one” main page, click here.

All pictures with the “JHP” logo were taken by Joe Hendricks Photography:

Blog- www.photojoeblog.com

Website- www.joehendricks.com