Zoom fatigue is real — how do we beat the feat?

It’s been over year since coronavirus first came into our lives. A lot has happened to the world of work in that time; from moving to remote settings, job losses, huge increases in technology and communication platforms, it’s been a wild ride. The one thing we cannot seem to get away from is virtual meetings. Whether that’s using Zoom, Slack, Teams, Skype, whatever platform you prefer it seems we are constantly sat staring at our colleagues through a screen and it has gotten tiresome.

At Careersaas, we are all for working remotely, we think there are fantastic benefits to this flexible working style that’s why we have over 1 million remote jobs on our platform. We also know there are certain downsides of working from home. In an office, at least when you have meetings you can get up off your desk, walk to the conference room, see people in person and maybe grab a coffee along the way. In this virtual environment we seem to be stuck in our chairs in front of a monitor for all hours of the day and many of us forget to take breaks from the glaring screens. Remote work certainly has its advantages, especially if you live that digital nomad lifestyle. So, if you want to learn how to overcome zoom fatigue, then Careersaas is here to help.

So, why is it so exhausting being on video calls?

In a regular conference room, you can rely on other people to catch you up when you space out — it’s more difficult to do that on video call unless you use the private chat function, so your focus is needed more to absorb all of the information. In addition, it is even easier to lose focus — trying to listen intently to the conversation, replying to that email and texting back to the work chat on Whatsapp all at the same time and suddenly you’ve missed the last three minutes of the conversation. Then you have family members awkwardly disturbing you mid-conversation and the doorbell rings, interrupting your work flow. Looking at little windows of ourselves and our colleagues for several ours a day leaves us with very few visual breaks.

On top of this, working virtually makes it difficult for many of us to switch off once the workday is over. If you are stuck in one room where you both work and relax, it can be challenging to turn off work mode and have a good balance between working hours and downtime.

How do we beat the feat?

So what can we do to combat this? Careersaas has some top tips to help you get over the strain.

  1. Avoid multitasking

It’s all too easy to be on a call and have four other tabs up to carry on doing other work at the same time. The opportunity to complete more tasks in a shorter period of time may lead to lower quality of work as it does not have your full attention. Make sure you plan out your day so you can focus on one action at a time. Next time you join a call, close any unnecessary tabs, put your phone out of reach, be present and ensure your workspace is tidy to avoid distraction.

2. Reduce video stimuli

When on calls, most people spend the majority of the call looking at their own face — combat this by hiding yourself from view. As well as looking at people’s faces, you may sped some time investigating their backgrounds. The brain notices so many different rooms at once, with house plants, pets, other people walking in the background and all of that stimuli can lead to mental fatigue. Perhaps you could suggest your team use a plain background or ask to switch video off when they aren’t talking so your brain has less to process on screen.

3. Is this call necessary?

Ask the question — can this information be delivered effectively through email or text message? Often colleagues put meetings in for meetings sake and they are dragged out with small talk. Avoid unnecessary long calls that could be simply answered in a few sentences the old fashioned way.

4. Eye strain solutions

Eye strain is something many office workers suffer from and there are a few exercises you can incorporate in your day-to-day life to help tackle physical issues that working online can cause. Here’s how you can reduce your eye strain:

  • Dim the screen, particularly if you work in the evening or at night-time
  • 20:20:20 rule — every 20 mins look out of the window around 20 feet away for 20 seconds. This allows your eyes to adjust so to further distant and avoids the strain from looking at a screen up close for extended periods of time
  • Minimize computer glare by using low blue light level screens or purchasing an anti-glare screen
  • Every 45 mins or so, get up and have a stretch. Grab a cup of tea/coffee, take a toilet break or do a lap of the garden.

We hope this has given you a few practical solutions to deal with the long slogs of virtual meetings. If this hasn’t scared you off, why not head on over to our platform and take a look at what remote jobs are available to you?

You can also find this article and many more on our medium site here.