Never heard of the term Zoom Fatigue before? Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, we all have shifted from engaging with the world physically to virtually connecting with them. Our room has become our new workplace, and our pajamas have become our best friends.
The teenagers and adults are using Zoom for their day-to-day work, but the younger generation who have no idea how to operate a laptop is now playing along. Those video conferences and work from home are likely to tire us out and contribute to the feeling known as “Zoom Fatigue,” as social distancing protocols have kept people apart physically.
Video conferencing helps us maintain a bond with our loved ones during this pandemic situation, but it also costs us an unhealthy routine. Yes, it indeed does.
Wondering what might be the reasons for Zoom fatigue?
Let me help you with that. While conversating and interacting with people virtually, we lose the essence of the connection, and we are losing a lot of essential elements of everyday communication. Like:
Limited body language:
70% of communication is body language, and while we chat through zoom conferences, we still miss out on the average body cues that we get with people.
More strength needed to match the pace with our coworkers:
We have to work a lot harder to navigate some of these elements, we have to work harder to stay focused, have to maintain eye contact, have to appear engaged more than we usually would when or in-person and that is becoming fatiguing.
Mental health at stake:
Our current situation, whether work from home, video conference, also adds up to the Zoom Fatigue. People are getting much more tired mentally rather than physically, which affects our mental health.
When attending a meeting physically, a person will variously be looking at the speaker, taking notes, and just being present at that moment. But at the Zoom conference, everyone is looking at everyone.
The Zoom conference makes it challenging to communicate with those who are not technically advanced and anxious. They tend to get nervous when something went wrong, either with an internet connection or with the device’s screen.
Large video conference:
Large video calls are like you are watching a movie; when we attend a lecture or meeting call more than we usually do, it becomes tough for us to stay focused and to learn new things. Our minds tend to get distracted by the other part of our life.
Have you ever thought of your child’s eye health?
If not, then you should now. Because of the work from home and online classes, the student’s screen timing has increased to a pace that negatively impacts the person’s eye health. Our eyes feel irritated and itchy after video conferencing.
Worried about how you appear at Zoom video conferences?
For that matter, zoom provides a square box where you can see yourself throughout the meeting—quite a lovely right. But think about it first, weren’t you feel a bit nervous when you continuously see yourself in a meeting. You focus on your hair, your posture, and your expression. It’s stressful.
Limited ways to communicate?
I agree with you. Video conferences don’t give us any chance to communicate through our body language. Body language is one of the vital parts when we are communicating with someone. But with online work, our movement gets restricted in a way that seems unnatural.
Increased screen time:
After COVID-19, all the companies and industries have shifted to online working. And it has seen that they are giving more work to their employees than they usually do. Because of that the workers are working even more and sitting in front of the screen a bit longer.
Now you know with the benefit of work from home, some setbacks eventually lead to unhealthy routine and Zoom Fatigue.
But these issues can be tackled down if we take care of things. Don’t know how? Don’t worry; we have your back.
“Audio Only” break:
While working from home in this pandemic situation and attending a long zoom meeting, give yourself a break of a few minutes and “turn off” your camera. Get “audio-only” mode, turn on and turn your body away from the screen and wash your eyes from cold water. You will feel much better.
In online work, people tend to think about their surroundings as well. In which room they are sitting, is this background is suitable or not, and so on. Try to place your camera at a distance from yourself so that you will get a chance to use your body language while communicating.
Stop focusing on yourself:
People can use the “Hide self-view” button by right-clicking on their photo once they see their face is framed properly in the video. This will not make you nervous while expressing yourself.
Reduce the tab size:
You can reduce the size of the tab/window on which you are attending a zoom conference so that you can use an external keyboard to allow an increase in the personal space bubble between oneself and the grid.
Advocate for yourself when you feel Fatigued:
Our body gives us many signals when we feel fatigued. In today’s unhealthy routine, try to catch those signals timely and take brief breaks to move your body so that you can stay on your grounds for a more extended period.
Don’t force yourself to say on phone/laptop when not needed:
People tend to browse things just for the sake of time pass, which tends to increase their screen timing, and when the time comes to attend the meeting, they feel tired. Try not to sit in front of the screen when not needed. Just lay down on your bed and close your eyes for few minutes.
In a nutshell,
By seeing our market becoming digitally advanced, we know how our future looks like when it comes to education and work. We are going to have more opportunities for online work even after the pandemic. We are going to attend a video conference and students are going to learn new skills as well.
Although COVID has made us sit at home, we can focus on ourselves much more than we usually do. We can agree on this right. We tried making new dishes; we started taking care of our health, starting nurturing ourselves. We also came across with unhealthy routine because of the work from home. This is affecting many people on a mental level. But at the end of the day, as long as we are safe, we can fight with anything unhealthy for us. Stay safe, meditate for an hour and eat healthily.