Business As Usual – In the Bush (Give Zoom the Boot)

According to studies conducted by Stanford University, a minimum of four consequences of prolonged video chats have been identified, a set of symptoms commonly known as ‘Zoom Fatigue’. As more and more business and student individuals are thrust into the world of online meetings, classes and conferences, this new kind of burn-out has emerged, with the following symptoms being most prevalent:

  • Feelings of irritation with co-workers
  • Challenges in maintaining personal at-home relationships, or being present with family
  • ‘Fog brain’ and difficulty in concentrating
  • Physical challenges, such as muscle stiffness and pain, feelings of fatigue and difficulty sleeping

These difficulties show up as a result of the very fibre of humanity being challenged – specifically, the way that we identify socially with fellow humans. When interacting via online meetings, our brains have to work harder to read facial expressions and body language. What’s more, the constant eye contact is believed to be more intense and emotionally draining than regular boardroom meetings, where opportunities to look around, look down at notes and change from person-to-person exist. For many, home-life interference adds a new dimension of stress – such as juggling children and spousal relationships between, and even during, meetings.

Take a Break From It All – a Boardroom in the Bush

Business doesn’t have to come to a grinding halt when you and your team take a break from the strains of video conferencing. In fact, you can recharge and re-energize the creative minds of your executives with a ‘boardroom in the bush’ getaway.

At Abelana Game Reserve, we haven’t attempted to recreate the corporate meeting room, because we know that if you wanted a projector and a flipchart, you’d use the stagnant office boardroom or a stuffy city-based venue. As we enjoy the spoils of nature on a daily basis, we think city boardrooms are pretty draining anyway.

Instead, Abelana River Lodge hosts boardroom meetings in the wide open spaces of its river-side decks, with the wonders of the wilderness all around. Brainstorm revolutionary business ideas with the chatter of birdsong and vervet monkeys overhead. Inclement weather moves meetings just a few feet indoors, the pattering of rain providing calm for a healthy headspace.

It’s just what every team needs.

Abelana’s Boardroom in the Bush caters for up to 10 single executives, or 20 guests, sharing. Luxurious accommodation overlooking the Selati River provides deep rest and comfort and includes all meals, teas and coffees, two safari activities daily and sundowners in the bush.

In the Meantime…

Until you embark on your bush event, it’s important to take care of yourself, and encourage your team to do the same. Leading online wellness resource, Healthline , recommends a few practical actions that sufferers of Zoom fatigue can try to minimize the impact on their physical and mental health:

  1. Excuse yourself from unnecessary meetings, or take a breather when your presence isn’t needed.
  2. Mix it up by scheduling Zoom meetings socially – virtual coffees and dinners with friends or family abroad.
  3. If it isn’t absolutely necessary, turn off your video. This will free you of having to see yourself on screen, having to make eye contact constantly and from having to tidy up the pile of laundry or children’s toys that might have accumulated being you.
  4. Avoid late afternoon Zoom meetings, as these can interfere with your sleep quality and overall tiredness. Adopt the policy: Meet in the morning, produce in the afternoons.

Your river-view boardroom awaits – break the monotony with a corporate event in the Lowveld. Abelana enjoys an idyllic location, easily accessible via a safe, delightful road trip through one of the country’s most magnificent sceneries.

It’s just what YOU need… Even when it’s “business as usual”.

Find out more: 061 952 4302 /

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