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Health What's 'Zoom fatigue'? Here's why video calls can be so exhausting

17:15  24 april  2020
17:15  24 april  2020 Source:   usatoday.com

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Why are we all experiencing ' Zoom fatigue '? From having to focus on 15 people at once in gallery view or worrying about how you appear as you speak, a number of things may cause someone to feel anxious or worried on a video call . Any of these factors require more focus and mental energy than a

Zoom fatigue is the psychological response that the brain processes after too many virtual All those video meetings are impacting your brain — here ' s how to save yourself from feeling “Mental health experts suspect that Zoom fatigue happens because interacting over video calls is so different from

A few Zoom calls for work in the morning. Logging your children into their virtual classroom around lunchtime. And a FaceTime call with your parents at the end of the day.

As social distancing remains in effect across the country during the coronavirus pandemic, people are moving from one video call to another. But there may be an unintended effect, mental health and communications experts warn: "Zoom fatigue," or the feeling of tiredness, anxiousness or worry with yet another video call.

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Many factors contribute to why video conferences have become so overwhelming and exhausting , but there are things we can do to ease the stress. "It' s Zoom fatigue ," reported DigiDay. "As millions of people stay indoors due to the coronavirus outbreak, business and pleasure [have] both moved to the

What is it, exactly, that’ s so depleting about interacting with a grid of faces on video chat? Heavy users and experts in psychology and communication point to a number of So is being worried about people you have some responsibility for. “I think the exhaustion is not technological fatigue ,” Petriglieri says.

"When we're on all these videos calls all day long, we're kind of chained to a screen," said Suzanne Degges-White, a licensed counselor and chair of counseling and counselor education at Northern Illinois University.

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"It's just psychologically off-putting. I've got to show up again but the thing is, we're not really showing up anywhere," she said.

Why are we all experiencing 'Zoom fatigue'?

From having to focus on 15 people at once in gallery view or worrying about how you appear as you speak, a number of things may cause someone to feel anxious or worried on a video call. Any of these factors require more focus and mental energy than a face-to-face meeting might, said Vaile Wright, the American Psychological Association's director of clinical research and quality.

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Why you feel exhausted from endless Zoom calls . It’ s called “ Zoom fatigue .” The greater effort it takes to make sense of what ’ s going on means we often take mental shortcuts. Videoconferences can be emotionally exhausting as well. One study of interpreters working in the United Nations and

I’ve tried to parse what makes Zoom so exhausting for me. I feel like an emotionally bereft alien struggling to comprehend the mysteries of human connection. What makes a meatspace gathering a life-affirming source of intimacy, and a digital one a simulacrum?

"It's this pressure to really be on and be responsive," she said.

According to Jeremy Bailenson, the founding director of Stanford's Virtual Human Interaction Lab, the platforms naturally put us in a position that is unnatural. A combination of having prolonged eye contact and having someone's enlarged face extremely close to you forces certain subconscious responses in humans.

"Our brains have evolved to have a very intense reaction when you have a close face to you," he said. 

During normal, in-person conversations, "eye contact moves in a very intricate dance, and we're very good at it," Bailenson said. When one person looks one way, another changes where they look. A small eyebrow raise from someone at one end of the room can trigger a glance between two people on the other. But typically, we don't stare into our colleagues' eyes, up close on a computer screen, for an hour at a time.

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Why video calls can be exhausting . As the coronavirus pandemic continues and more Canadians Between FaceTime, Skype, Zoom , Houseparty and Google Hangouts, video calls have never been What ’ s more, Hart says, you need to convey you’re actively listening to someone — especially in work

So much of human communication is through these nonverbal cues that can be either lost or distorted in a video conference. 

"In a way, we're closer but we're still communicating through this weird filter, so it gets tiring to get to the real stuff through this filter," Degges-White said.

Why do our social video calls feel stressful, too?

While some people may be experiencing fatigue with back-to-back Webex or Teams calls, video conferencing technologies have still benefited workplaces in many ways during stay-at-home orders, Bailenson said.

He described a conference he had set aside two work days for that ended up finishing within two-thirds of one day.

The virtual conference format kept "the people most critical to the conversation talking," he said, and the attached chat box feature on most video calls also helped narrow people's focus and keep a written record.

For video calls with old friends or virtual family reunions, the forced structure can create different challenges, though.

"A lot of us are thinking I want social stuff to be fun and having to be locked in front of this computer ... it's just not how I want to be spending my time," Bailenson said.

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Why you’re finding video calls so exhausting . Posted by. Here ’ s why video calling is making you feel wiped out. The coronavirus lockdown may have put an end to face-to-face socialising for All in all, it seems, spending time on video call can be particularly draining – and it’ s completely normal to

Zoom fatigue is a real thing. But as time goes by, I’ve noticed that video chats can be unusually exhausting , in a way that I didn’t quite expect. What ’ s more, turning down an invitation for virtual socialization can spur feelings of guilt, because they don’t have much of an excuse amidst the

Degges-White described it creating a structure to conversation like email. One person speaks and everyone takes their turn and waits to reply. 

"That's not normally the way we do social interactions," she said. "It's not that easy give and take." Side conversations are lost. Some people who are naturally reserved may never get a word in. Others may get distracted by people in their house.

The context of this happening during the coronavirus pandemic can't be lost either, Wright said. We're worried about loved ones but apart from them physically.

How do you combat the 'Zoom fatigue'?

Not every video call actually needs to be a video call. "Be thoughtful about how you're using Zoom calls. You probably don't need video chat for all your work," Wright added.

She also suggested taking breaks, if possible, in between calls and creating a separate physical space where you take work video calls and personal video calls.

Bailenson suggested asking to set ground rules before a call. "It may be awkward for 10 second, but say, 'Can we just go audio only?'"

He said for some meetings he's in now, only the person speaking has their video on. And at least for one meeting a week with his team, he says they all keep video on the entire time to have that shared sense of being together.

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If you're uncomfortable with how you look on camera, it's worth spending time adjusting your settings and trying different lighting in your house, Bailenson added. 

If you notice one person not very responsive or always turning their video off, check in with them one-on-one, Degges-White suggested. The large video conference can be intimidating whether it's work or personal, and some people don't like to speak up in large groups.

"Don't expect these Zoom group to replace other ways you communicate with people," she said.

Follow USA TODAY's Ryan Miller on Twitter @RyanW_Miller

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: What's 'Zoom fatigue'? Here's why video calls can be so exhausting

Twitter closes Chinese accounts, Zoom accesses requests from Beijing .
Friday, Twitter announced that it had deactivated a "core" of 23,750 accounts linked to China and relayed by some 150,000 other accounts serving as "amplifiers". © afp.com/Denis Charlet The Twitter application icon on a smartphone (illustration) The American social network Twitter will close tens of thousands of propaganda and disinformation accounts linked to the Chinese government, his compatriot Zoom , on the other hand, acknowledges having acceded to requests from Beijing to suspend account

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