Simple Tips To Avoid Zoom Burnout

SoulAdvisor | 24 Apr 2021

In 2020, millions of people across the globe made the abrupt shift to working from home. While remote work offers many advantages, one significant disadvantage is the unintended health consequences arising from virtual communication. 

Writing for The Conversation, Paul Levy, Senior Lecturer and Researcher in Innovation Management at the University of Brighton, explores the psychological consequences of ‘Zoom fatigue’ and burnout. Described as the tiredness, worry or burnout associated with excessive use of virtual communication platforms, Zoom fatigue is a real and pervasive issue.

In this article, Levy highlights findings from emerging research, explaining why endless virtual meetings are sapping our energy and focus. According to Levy, a video call requires extra work to receive non-verbal signs of communication that are lost on a screen. This leads to ‘non-verbal overload.’ As such, we are expending extra energy from too much eye contact trying to interpret communication signals we would ordinarily pick up on in-person. Levy suggests balancing Zoom meetings with phone calls, instead. In addition to the benefits of avoiding non-verbal overload, a phone call also allows freedom to stretch, move, and perhaps even go for a walk. 

In another publication in Psychology Today, Dr. Brian Robinson, licensed psychotherapist, journalist and Professor Emeritus at the University of North Carolina, provides additional practical tips to mitigate the harmful effects of endless screen hours, such as:

  1. Investing in blue-light blocking glasses: Filtering blue light from computer screens is suggested to improve sleep and decision-making.    

  2. Spending time in green environments: Replacing hours in front of the screen with breaks in nature has been reported to attenuate some of the damaging effects of prolonged sitting, time in front of the screen and fatigue.

  3. Giving your eyes a break every 20 minutes: For every 20 minutes you spend staring at your screen, look away for 20 seconds to stretch, walk or hydrate. Set an alarm so you don’t forget.

  4. Dedicating time to a mindfulness practice: This could be a 10-minute daily meditation or a lunch time mindfulness practice to raise your energy during the workday. 

For access to qualified complementary health practitioners or wellness therapists, please visit our therapies page. Search by symptom, therapy, or practitioner, to find a practitioner suited to your needs. Many of our practitioners offer both in-studio or online consultations.

References

Zoom burnout: Be more productive, ditch those video calls | The Conversation

Paul Levy | The Conversation

How To Foster Resilience In The Burnout Epidemic | SoulAdvisor

A Theoretical Argument for the Causes of Zoom Fatigue | Technology, Mind and Behavior

Zoom Burnout | Psychology Today

Dr. Brian Robinson | Psychology Today

Mindfulness | SoulAdvisor

Meditation | SoulAdvisor

Qualified Practitioners | SoulAdvisor 

Therapies | SoulAdvisor

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