Korean Psychiatrist Explains Why BTS’s Song “00:00 (Zero O’Clock)” Is So Comforting & Relatable

“And you gonna be happy…”

If you’ve ever felt a deep sense of comfort while listening to BTS‘s song “00:00 (Zero O’Clock)”, you’re not alone. Co-written by leader RM, the Map of the Soul: 7 track has made numerous ARMYs feel like their struggles are heard. But just what makes it so comforting to begin with?

Together, otolaryngologist Dr. Lee Nakjun, physician Dr. Woo Changyun, and psychiatrist Dr. Oh Jinseung make up the YouTube channel Doctor Friends.

After Dr. Woo recommended that his colleagues listen to “00:00 (Zero O’Clock) for its “consoling” lyrics, Dr. Oh reacted to the song to find out what makes it feel so empathetic and relatable to people going through a hard time.

Here’s the psychiatrist’s analysis.

You know those days when you’re sad for no reason

Dr. Oh explained that this first line of the song is actually pretty accurate, since many people become depressed with no real reason behind their sadness.

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Honestly, depression doesn’t require any causes! You can get depressed with no apparent reason.

— Dr. Oh Jinseung, psychiatrist

Your body’s heavy

According to Dr. Oh, this isn’t just a metaphor. Tiredness and fatigue are both common symptoms of depression. And, even though Dr. Woo isn’t a psychiatrist himself, he explained that many patients who come to his department complaining of tiredness are later diagnosed with depression.

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Depression leads to actual body fatigue. Many patients say they actually feel exhausted!

— Dr. Woo Changyun, physician

Everyone else seems so competitive / I feel like I’m already behind

Dr. Oh went on to explain that many people going through a hard time tend to compare themselves to others, bringing down their self-esteem. Furthermore, this type of negative thinking typically occurs at night when people lay down in bed and let their thoughts take over. This makes the song’s title even more appropriate.

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[You think] “What did really I do today?”. You feel like you wasted your time, and this usually happens at night… it’s actually quite difficult to have happy thoughts unless you had an extremely good day.

— Dr. Oh Jinseung, psychiatrist

Think if it was my fault / It’s almost 12

When negative nighttime thoughts set in, Dr. Oh says they can quickly turn into self-blame. As the clock strikes midnight, many unhappy people find themselves becoming more unhappy as they believe they wasted their days without making progress.

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If something didn’t turn out well, and you blame yourself for these… “I think it could be my fault?”. And you check the clock, and it’s already 12 o’clock? What would you think at that moment?

— Dr. Oh Jinseung, psychiatrist

Will something change? / That probably won’t happen

Sadly, Dr. Oh explained that when people become consumed by their sad thoughts, it can be very hard to stay optimistic about the future. After having a bad day, they have no expectation that tomorrow will be any better.

Dr. Woo added that the narrator represents many people who want to live their lives to the fullest but become too worn out to stay positive. Dr. Oh agreed, noting that right now, many people lack the opportunities to live happily after the COVID-19 pandemic left thousands out of work.

[You’ll think] you’re hopeless! “What if it gets even worse?”… Even if they want to work and live to their fullest, they aren’t given any opportunity.

— Dr. Oh Jinseung

Today ends when the hour and minute hands align

After setting up a “hopeless” scenario that the majority of people can relate to in tough times, “00:00 (Zero O’Clock)” takes a turn for the positive. Dr. Woo noted how every tough day resets at midnight, offering “a sliver of hope” for a better day tomorrow.

Dr. Oh explained that no human can feel the same for 365 days straight. Those who accept that sometimes times will get rough have a healthier time processing disappointing events. And, one of the best ways to move on from those disappointments is to recollect what happened at the end of each day.

So, recalling your current status is actually a healthy method to go through a tough day. Instead of passing the day without knowing why, it’s better to think back to it.

— Dr. Oh Jinseung, psychiatrist

Final thoughts

All in all, Dr. Oh praised RM for writing “his true feelings into these lyrics“. Dr. Woo went on to explain that “00:00 (Zero O’Clock) presents emotions everyone can relate to, from BTS to their fans, and offers a method of being more hopeful for the future. With that in mind, no wonder it’s such a comforting song that even a psychiatrist can recommend.

So, when you lie down at 12:00 at night, those catastrophic thoughts keep rising up! Some people can’t even sleep because of that! At those times, like the lyrics of the song, I don’t think about too far ahead. Just, tomorrow! And today! And since it’s past 12 O’Clock, let’s begin our new day!

— Dr. Oh Jinseung, psychiatrist

Check out the video below:

Source: 닥터프렌즈/YouTube and 방탄소년단/Facebook (Image Credit)