At Zenith Performance Solutions, like many other companies, we’ve found ourselves turning to Zoom to replace all of the interactions we would typically have in-person. It’s been an invaluable tool during the COVID-19 pandemic, as meeting in person is unsafe and restricted in many parts of the country. However, it’s also led to a unique phenomenon known as Zoom fatigue.
What Is Zoom Fatigue?
When we interact in person, there are numerous subconscious cues that we pick up on. From crossing your arms to a subtle change in tone of voice, our communication techniques have been honed over decades of in-person communication. When we remove some of the cues and communicate solely online, it can make us feel incredibly exhausted. Zoom fatigue refers to the overwhelmed feeling some people have from interacting solely over screens during the day at work and to communicate with family and friends off the clock. Virtual interactions are simply hard on our brain, as they aren’t wired to handle them all day long!
How Can We Combat Zoom Fatigue?
- Avoid multitasking as much as possible. One study found that switching between tasks can cut down productivity as much as 40%. The time it takes for your brain to switch on and off can dramatically dent how much you get done and make you feel much more tired than you typically would. Try to use the Pomodoro method when not on Zoom (focusing for 20-minute periods uninterrupted before a 5-minute break to tackle other quick tasks) to cut down on Zoom fatigue.
- Give yourself a break in between Zoom calls. Constantly seeing and being seen can be stressful, so taking a short break between different things can make a big difference. When scheduling your meetings and calls, ensure that you leave yourself time for a quick stretch and glass of water.
- Ask yourself, do you really need a meeting? What we are seeing with our clients is that they are having meetings when an email would do. Ask yourself, what is the purpose of this meeting, what are we trying to accomplish? There often is a more creative way to accomplish the same objective without a meeting.
- Whenever possible, reduce the number of things that you have on your screen at any given time. Visual stimuli can make Zoom fatigue even worse. Remove as many on-screen distractions as possible. Because we focus on backgrounds in addition to the people we are talking with, try to pare down your background so that it is as simple and uncluttered as possible.
Looking for best practices for virtual meetings or how to lead virtually? Check out our upcoming workshops.
Help Employees Avoid Zoom Fatigue with Zenith Performance Solutions
Zenith Performance Solutions wants to transform the ways that you and your employees learn. We offer a comprehensive range of training course design services, including updating existing courses and consulting. We work with companies of every size to create innovative and instructionally sound materials that boost employee performance and satisfy your objectives. To learn more, please contact us by calling (970) 409-4013.