Remote working has proven to have many benefits, with arguably one big downside: virtual fatigue!
We’ve spent years trying to move away from sending too many emails or reverting to the telephone and finally we’re in a place where most of us are becoming a little more comfortable putting ourselves in front of the camera and then along comes virtual fatigue!
Virtual fatigue is real, here to stay and yet one more thing that we must quickly adapt to.
We’ve gone from physically running from back to back meetings to clicking between them.
We have to become much more consciously aware of switching off our internal auto-pilot thinking and listening to the physiological signals that our body sends in its attempts to help us. We’re all fighting for air at the minute and all bets are off. The human condition is to be strong and appear strong and this is now being seen in our approach to remote working.
We need to bring a little balance back.
Those old-fashioned communication methods are still as solid and sturdy as they ever were, though just like we were all pinging each other when instant messaging came in, too much of one method gets old (and tiring), fast. If video conferencing is needed, there can even be opportunities when everyone goes off-camera to audio only.
We need to add a little challenge.
How often do we challenge 1) why a meeting is needed or 2) why it needs to be an hour / 30 minutes. Yet we’ve all been there, thoughtfully nodding at minute 57 of the most boring meeting. Except we checked out long ago. If longer meetings are needed, inject them with frequent energy checks and state changers. Be the one who challenges from time to time and others may well take your lead.
We need to look after ourselves a little more.
Other simple yet effective techniques can help to mix things up and and ease the fatigue. Stand up for some of your meetings…just make sure you’re bottom-half ready as well as top-half ready. Carve out some time in between meetings. Keep it safe and treat it just as importantly as any of your other diary commitments. Take a brain-break by having a walking meeting in the fresh air, which can be a total mindset reset and be sure you’re drinking enough water.
Virtual fatigue is real and it is threatening our wellbeing.
My new video explores the phenomenon of virtual fatigue that so many of us are experiencing, and offers practical techniques that you can apply immediately to help yourself and your mindset.