Zoom Fatigue: It’s a real thing and here’s how to avoid it

Everyone is talking so much about COVID-19 fatigue as it relates to how the pandemic has changed our world for now, and maybe forever, but particularly in areas where lockdowns have made living a normal life impossible.

However, anyone working from home right now is probably also suffering from something far worse — what our French friends might call #FatigueLeZoom.

Now, we are definitely NOT putting Zoom down. Oh no. We love it. It’s been a virtual (see what we did there) godsend to help so many businesses continue working in teams throughout the pandemic and is more than likely here to stay well beyond.

But just as many get overloaded by constant face-to-face meetings in a non-COVID work world, some days it feels like there are more Zoom meetings than hours in the day.

There are some fairly obvious signs of Zoom fatigue, number one being wanting to pick your laptop up at the end of your 8th Zoom meeting for the day and lock it away in a dark closet somewhere.

But the more subtle signs include:

  • Feeling more drained than energised after a call
  • Finding yourself preoccupied about work all the time
  • Losing track of your train of thought or becoming slightly confused during calls
  • Become less friendly during Zooms
  • A feeling of not getting the same value out of calls as you might during in-person meetings
  • Freaking out when technical problems occur, as they will occasionally with Zoom, rather than just taking it in your stride and knowing whoever you are on the call with will understand

So, if you start noticing these signs, what do you do??

Besides, as mentioned above, hiding your laptop in the closet for a few hours (we are joking…mostly…), there are some practical ways to help manage and alleviate Zoom fatigue.

We recommend the following:

  • Add “No call block” in your calendar to give yourself well-deserved breaks from Zoom during the working day
  • Focus on the camera not your screen (and turn off your own image so you can’t see your own reactions) as though you are directly talking to someone
  • Start saying no to calls that have no value for you
  • Put a time-length on calls so that you can maintain energy and focus
  • Avoid jumping between calls
  • Add ice-breaking activities or more casual conversation before jumping into the business end of things
  • Schedule breaks between calls
  • Prepare for every call — have an agenda or at the very least speaking notes
  • Arrange your working space so that it is more conducive to better calls
  • Take some time off tech

So, don’t let Zoom fatigue get to you.

Zoom can continue to be a useful tool during the pandemic and beyond if you take some of the steps above.

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Young Apprentice AKA PB

Writer, editor, content dude, digital disruptor. Politics. Arts. Tech. Travel. Food. Film. The Force. Digital Nomad. Citizen of the universe. Coffee. Always.