How’s Zooming Who?

Natalie Trice

The pandemic has brought a whole host of new things to our lives that this time last year we couldn’t have predicted, and probably would have laughed at if someone would’ve told us! 

Queuing two metres apart to get into the supermarket, and tutting when people get too close. 

Wearing a mask in the street when it’s not even Halloween.

Only being able to go out of the house to exercise, buy essentials, and maybe swear when there is so much mess in the house that it would seem only you can see!

Keeping our children at home for months on end even though there is nothing wrong with them and not having to call in and say they won’t be at their desk each day. 

Using Zoom most days! 

Far from the fruity ice lolly we know and love, Zoom has become a tech staple for many people around the world. 

For some us it’s been a part of working life for quite a while, and we are used to living in a virtual world. For others it’s been a huge learning curve and something that getting to grips with can be tricky, especially if you don’t feel good enough on one level or another.  

The thing about Zoom is that just as you can talk to, and see others, as you chat about work, have a coffee catch up, or do training and have team meetings, you can see every part of yourself and you can also hear yourself as you speak. 

Oh, and let’s not forget that our homes and offices are as visible as a Rightmove profile. 

If you feel that you aren’t good enough at the best of times, being vulnerable to everyone from your son’s teacher, to your clients and students, Zoom can feel terrifying, but it doesn’t have to be that way. 

I have some tips on how you can embrace your inner Zoom and start to step into your own good enough shoes so you can join calls without stress and worry. 

Do it, do it and then do it some more 
I think I’m on week nine of being at home and what was strange before C-19, is now becoming normal, and it is the same when it comes to Zoom. Just like your daily yoga class at home and run around the village, the more you get on Zoom and try it out, the easier it becomes. You might not love it, but the more you do it, the easier it will be and you’ll start to wonder why you didn’t try it before, honestly, you will.

Take a trial run 
Another trick is to set up an account and do a call on your own. By doing this you are able to become confident about how to log in, what the set up looks like and you can even use this time to set your camera at an angle you are happy with and get your background right. 

Go video free
You can go onto Zoom without the video and some people are ok with that. So if you would feel better, try that option instead and you might build your confidence over time to use the camera. 

Get dressed
If you want to feel good, then wear something you love when you are on Zoom calls. I’m not saying you need to be ‘out out’ ready, but if you have a favourite dress that makes you feel confident or a lipstick that makes your skin look glowing, wear them! Slobbing around in your PJs isn’t off the agenda and let’s face it, gym clothes are way more comfy than jeans, but if it’s a work call or an interview, dress for the occasion and it will help get you in the right frame of mind. 

Smile 
If you can, relax and smile when you are on Zoom and not only will it help you to feel more relaxed, but your personality will shine and your ideas will come through more naturally. 

Sit up straight
I’m not being your teacher here, but if you’re scrunched away from other participants on the call, you won’t stand out in the way you are meant to and your contributions could be lost. Again, use those practise runs to find a position that works for you and if you sit up straight with your back tall and shoulders back you will be ahead of the crowd and owning your space. 

Lap it up 
I get it, Zoom can be nerve racking but playing with your hair (guilty), chewing your nails and messing with your jewellery won’t help you engage in the conversation. Before the call starts, take a deep breath, centre your thoughts, put your feet on the ground, put your hands in your lap and try to immerse yourself in what others are saying. 

Take a break 
Last week I had six hours on Zoom in one day and I was exhausted. Yes, I had some great sessions but it was hard going, so after each call I suggest you take a break. Stand up, move away from your screen, do some stretches, walk around, make a cuppa and pat yourself for doing it! 

Know that you are enough 
Each time you make it through a call, just think about how it felt, how much you were able to participate and how much easier it was. There is no doubt that some people find this kind of interaction hard, but knowing you have something helpful and interesting to say and are speaking with friends, family, clients or colleagues who enjoy your company, will help you to see that you are good enough for Zoom and can totally do this. 

If this is something that stops you in your tracks and a session with my might help you move ahead, do get in touch and let’s see how we can help you to go ahead.

Take care and keep safe.

Natalie

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