One is More than Zero

Dealing with daily mental health among responsibilities to jobs, family and self is hard enough.  With COVID continuing for an unforeseen period of time, depression and anxiety are on the rise in adults of all ages. Interestingly, adults with a diagnosis of depression or with ongoing depressive-like symptoms have a 64% greater risk of developing chronic diseases such as coronary artery disease (NIMH, 2017). Our bodies really do hold our stress.

It is common for us as human beings to not seek help until there is a problem or conflict immediately in front of us; right now, we are all facing some degree of unknown future and present-day stress. How are you taking care of yourself? I frequently ask my clients: What are you doing with the flood of information that is coming your way? Are you able to prioritize your own needs? Are you okay? If you answered, “I’m not sure,” “I don’t know,” or “No,” to these questions, then reaching out to a professional might be both a relief and a life changer. 

Another thing I tell clients is, “It is okay to not be okay.” It is okay to not be doing your best right now during these challenging times. It is okay to need pressure lifted off your back. It is okay to question your own expectations and it is okay to stop trying to please everyone around you. Focusing on you first is okay! We need to make sure we honor ourselves with as much effort as we do when we are caring for those around us. 

When assessing whether reaching out for support is for you, I like to live by the belief of, “One is more than zero.” This means that if you have the thought, then it is most likely time to take some action. One is more than zero. If there is a hole in your boat and you begin to sink, you would want to take care of the hole, not just paddle faster. One is more than zero. Why wait for several holes in your boat before you begin to seek support and help? 


  1. It is okay to not be doing okay. 

  2. One is more than zero. 

  3. It is alright to reach out for help and support.  


Written by: Travis Michaels, Psychotherapist


Twin Cities Therapy and Counseling Associates is a mental health clinic with counseling services by caring therapists. Please visit for more information