Videoconferencing and remote professional services are now a regular practice in many industries. However, these remote calls can lead to feelings of fatigue.
If you find yourself exhausted by all of the video calls in your life, here are a few tips:
- Schedule “no meeting” blocks of time. Make sure there are parts of your day when you are away from a screen.
- Avoid multitasking. When you are on a call, focus on the business of the call. Avoid pulling up a second window to read emails or conduct other work. Multitasking during calls leads to a loss of productivity and difficulty remembering what occurred in the meeting.
- Limit the number of calls. Do what you can to cut down on your overall number of calls. Group calls with separate people or teams together where feasible and appropriate. If a video call is not actually necessary, resolve the issues via phone, email, or a collaborative document. Do not default to a video call for every type of meeting. If you are meeting a stranger for the first time, such as a networking connection, for example, video calls can feel personal and invasive; start with a phone call.
- Take breaks. If your call lasts more than an hour, it is important to take breaks. Get up and walk around, use the restroom, get a glass of water. Everyone will have more energy and remain more productive as a result.
- Turn off your self-view. Video call programs like Zoom default to displaying your own video as well as others on the call. Staring at your own face can be distracting and increase stress and anxiety. Hide yourself from your own view so you can focus on the other people on the call.
- Limit on-screen stimuli. In addition to hiding your face and keeping other windows closed, do what you can to limit what you see on-screen. Encourage people to take calls in front of plain backgrounds instead of a room full of objects. Seeing five different rooms full of furniture can cause disorientation and increase mental fatigue.
Learn more in our complete article, "Videoconferencing Fatigue and What to Do About It."