For some people, a video call is an annoying, but necessary part of almost every job. For others, video calls are dreaded occurrences that trigger bouts of mild to severe social anxiety. If you fall in the latter group, know that you’re not alone. Many people experience social anxiety when they are forced to engage in video conference calls or conversations. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to help you stay calm and collected in this type of situation. Here are some effective ways to deal with social anxiety triggered from video calls.
Focus on Breathing
Sometimes the best thing you can do when you’re feeling anxious is to disconnect your thoughts from the video call and focus on your breathing. Take the opportunity to do this when no one is directly talking to you. The point of this technique is not to ignore anyone, but to make the best use of any parts of the conversation that don’t involve you. Allow yourself to focus on the way your breathe feels as it moves in and out of your lungs. You can do it quietly and discreetly without drawing any attention to yourself.
Focusing on your breathing is a type of meditation that can help you feel calmer and more at ease with your current situation. It diverts your thoughts from your stressors temporarily so you can gain greater control over the way you feel in the moment. You may also wish to take five minutes before each call to take some cleansing breaths so you are already relaxed and calm when the call starts.
Prepare Notes & Questions Prior to Call
Most video calls involve questions. You may be the one asking the questions or someone else may ask you questions. To minimize your anxiety and help you feel better prepared, write down any notes and questions you may have before the call even begins. Try to anticipate what others may ask you so you can respond with confidence. The simple act of writing down notes can go a long way toward helping you feel less stressed and anxious during your call.
Set the Scene
Preparation before your call is just as important as how you perform during your call. To make sure you’re comfortable and confident, set the scene in advance. Keep children, pets and other family members out of the room so you have complete silence without distractions. Let everyone in your household know how long to leave you alone while you’re on your call. Don’t forget to set up your backdrop as well. Make sure you’re not set up in a messy room or you’ll worry about keeping the clutter hidden from the camera’s view.
With a little preparation and forethought, you can minimize the social anxiety you feel during video calls. Try these tips and watch your worries fade into the background while your confidence takes the front seat. You can also incorporate additional ways to practice mindfulness and relaxation techniques throughout your day by browsing through the blogs for this pillar of Brillia's 5 pillar program.