Say goodbye to your Zoom anxiety: Is it time to finally end the virtual meeting for all?

Wait Simon, you’re on mute

We are counting down the days until Zoom is no longer a constant in our lives (credit: Compare Fibre)

As restrictions are being slowly lifted, we are all wondering the same things: how many more Zoom meetings do I have to go through?

Click here to join a scheduled Zoom meeting. Another video call to turn on – wonderful. You make sure both your microphone and camera are turned off when you’re suddenly asked to turn the camera on. Panic! This is not what you wanted, but there’s no choice. 

It’s time to sort out hair and put on a smile. Even though there is no proof for it, you are certain everyone is looking at your little window, secretly judging. 

And so, you spend the whole call looking at yourself, looking for every little thing that could be wrong with you. Little do you know, that is what the rest are doing, and they’re not actually paying you that much attention.

it’s never over, and having a quiz night every week for a year is actually not that fun.

Zoom has left the room

The dreaded words “You’re on mute” will always send shivers down our spine (credit: Sigmund)

That’s okay. I can get through this, as long as I don’t have to talk. But of course, you’re asked questions and have to speak. After a few seconds, someone interrupts you: “Sorry, we can’t hear you, can you turn your mike on?” Not again. 

There hasn’t been much you had to master over lockdown, but the mute button seems to be getting the last laugh every time. Not so long later, it’s over, and you think you can relax. “Don’t forget about the Zoom quiz tonight!” You were wrong; it’s never over, and having a quiz night every week for a year is actually not that fun.

Zoom anxiety and fatigue is becoming a struggle for many of us prompting several studies about it. According to Buffalo7, 73% of people have suffered zoom anxiety this year. 

We felt exhausted and drained after finally pressing “leave”

At the start of the first lockdown, we saw it as a great way to keep in touch with our friends, families and colleagues, but that quickly changed as we felt exhausted and drained after finally pressing “leave”.

According to research at Stanford University, one of the primary triggers is the increase of self-evaluation. It is difficult to avoid checking what you look like every two minutes when you can see yourself the whole time. 

Even if we are conscious about our looks when we’re meeting someone in person, it would slowly disappear at the back of our mind and allow us to focus on the conversation.

Is it time to say goodbye to online work meetings? If so, how are we even going to cope? Are we ready to socialise again?

We love to hate and hate to love the video calls

Lagging in loungewear

We are not looking forward to bring the jeans back for real-life socialising (credit: Keren Fedida)

We have spent so much time in comfortable clothes, with little to no make-up and without a haircut for far too long. Though we struggled with the Zoom anxiety, it had one (well, maybe a few more) benefit – you were able to turn your camera off when it got just a little bit too much.

We might not be moving back to the old “normal”, but it is time to say goodbye to the never-ending video calls as we (hopefully) slowly go back to office life.

We all have perhaps complained about our lives during the pandemic, but we learned to care less about our looks. Now the question is: are we able to keep some of the comfort and feeling of safety we got from working from home?

We love to hate and hate to love the video calls and the anxiety they cause us, but it gives us a way to stay close with our friends and families. As we are slowly allowed to socialise again, let’s give them goodbye. One thing is for certain, the anxiety will not be missed.