Posted by ICON School on Mar 31, 2021 1:15:08 PM
“You’re on Mute.”
This very well might become the phrase that reminds us all the most of 2020-2021; the year Zoom took over EVERYTHING, and Zoom burnout became a thing.
Virtual classes were quickly brought online in schools across the country in a response to the pandemic, and a lot of us still have mixed feelings about it. While many students (and adults) like Zoom and have no complaints, there are many more who are experiencing a list of experiences or symptoms known as “Zoom Burnout.”
What’s Zoom Burn Out?
Zoom burnout, or zoom fatigue is the anxiety, irritability, and exhaustion many people experience when they’ve been video conferencing too much. Everyone’s tolerance level is different, but the way that videoconferencing impacts us is pretty consistent.
There are too many people looking at us on a videoconference, they may feel too close to us, and also we don’t like staring at ourselves for hours either. Reading body language or non-verbal cues, trying to be alert, and looking at surroundings (and not just faces) are much more difficult than when we are in-person. It’s unnatural, and it’s exhausting, and it can make it really hard to be engaged in your schoolwork and get the grades you’d like to.
How can I avoid Zoom School Burn Out?
While video conferencing may be the new normal when it comes to school for the foreseeable future, there are some things that you can do as a student to reduce the negative impact that it might be having on your mood, your grades, and your sense of well-being.
Here are some tips to help you avoid burnout, and start enjoying school and feeling better.
Try switching from gallery view, to speaker view. This will allow you to spend more of your energy focusing on the speaker, and not everyone else who is on the same call and their different bedrooms, dining rooms, or living rooms.
If you can, try calling in from your phone instead of your laptop or desktop. This will make it possible for you to move around, stretch, or even go outside if you need to for a breath of fresh air. Sitting for hours in front of a screen is tiring, whereas being on your phone or even tablet can give your a little more freedom.
Use the self-block feature. This way you aren’t staring at and critiquing yourself during the call. You wouldn’t stare at yourself in a mirror for hours on end, would you? A zoom call can make you feel very self-conscious and make it hard to focus on the class or the speaker.
Take advantage of breaks if possible. While sometimes classes can be back to back, if you can take even a five-minute break it can make a huge difference on your energy level, your attention span, and your ability to feel engaged and ready to learn.
Make some space. We are closer to each other’s faces during a Zoom call than we would normally be in class or even talking face to face, and this makes most of us uncomfortable and is distracting. Try moving the screen a little bit further away from you until you feel more comfortable.
Do one thing at a time. It can feel tempting to check texts, scroll through social media or even work on an assignment while we are on a Zoom call, but doing too much at a time can cause us to feel distracted, stressed out, and anxious. Try focusing on the presentation or lesson, and take notes by hand the old-fashioned way to keep you engaged and listening.
By using one, a few, or all of these tips, you may be able to turn back the clock on your Zoom fatigue, and be feeling better in no time!
While these are video-conferencing specific tips, there are other challenges with online learning that might be making it hard to be as successful as you’d like to be as a student, so here are some tips to help you adapt to these as well!