Find out how to prevent Zoom fatigue and be the most productive version of yourself while immersed in a new work from home lifestyle.
Throughout the past months, comments of “Zoom fatigue” have been mentioned in my client (Zoom) meetings, on social media, with co-workers, and in casual conversation with friends and family. I am not immune to this new workday symptom, as we are no longer just dialing into one or two virtual meetings daily, since ALL meetings have transitioned to video calls. Here are a few tips that I have learned and implemented myself along the way.
My word of the year is presence. I chose this word before I realized just how much the current circumstances would test me. Challenge yourself to avoid multitasking and be in the moment. The next time you’re on a video chat, close any tabs or programs that might distract you (e.g. your inbox or Slack), put your phone away, and stay present.
I know it’s tempting but try to remind yourself that the email/Slack/text message you just got can wait 15 minutes, and that you’ll be able to craft a better response when you’re not also on a virtual call.
Shorten Your Zoom Meetings
Transition to 45-50 minute meetings vs full one-hour sessions. If I schedule a one-hour meeting, I almost ALWAYS fill that entire hour. I have transitioned to 45-50 minute meetings when possible and have found that I can (usually) accomplish my set agenda within that timeframe. This gives me 10-15 minutes for a bio-break, to grab a snack, fill my water, prepare for my next call, or even get some fresh air. During those 15 minutes, I recommend that you get out of your chair/off your screen. Seriously. Don’t take your phone with you when you walk away and don’t browse on social media. I have found that this has helped me to feel recharged and ready to be fully present again with my next call and/or task.
Reduce Daily Screen Time
I find myself working intermittently into the evening as an email or Slack message comes through. However, I have learned that shutting down and going offline will only help me be more productive the next day. Avoid screen time in the evening and after business hours. There are truly only so many hours per day we can spend in front of a screen without extreme strain on your eyes.
- Go to bed alone, or with a pet, or with the person you love, (or with the person you love AND your pet) — but not your phone.
- Put the charging station AWAY from your bedside table (great suggestion Dr. Ayo, my health and wellness guru). He recommends nothing near you that can receive an electromagnetic current.
- Start your day with 15 minutes of anything except looking at your phone (stretch, pray, coffee… stretch while you pray for coffee).
- Institute phone-free mealtimes.
- Drive with your phone in the glovebox.
- Get one of Christine’s Cell Phone Sleeping Bags.
- Sit without the scroll – contemplate, meditate, relax.
Switch up your work from home spot. When we are in the office, we traditionally get away from our desk and move from meeting room to meeting room. I decided to mimic this routine at home. I move my laptop away from my desk (and the charging outlet) and stay at a new location until my computer battery is about to die. Then, when I get that 5% battery remaining notification, I relocate back to my desk. I sincerely appreciate the change of scenery, and love that it forces me to move. There has been a noticeable difference in my posture and energy from sitting in new seating arrangements throughout the day. It also has me racing against my computer battery to complete a task before I move to the next location. Several of my clients noticed that I was in a different location and even commented on the lighting and how it looked better.