Video Meetings – the energy sucking vortex of doom

Posted on: March 1, 2021
Vortex of Doom

Or: why I feel so tired after yet another video meeting..

A few years back, when I was speaking professionally on the topic of leadership, I typically saw two main types of people in my audiences: those who wanted to be there, and those who were told to be there.

As a speaker, the two audiences created distinctively different outcomes for me. When I was brought in to speak or team build with a group who wanted to be there; to attend, connect and grow, I would walk away from the session with an abundance of energy. In fact, I often had to find ways to reduce my energy levels at the end of the day by going for a long walk, and debriefing with my team members. The length of the day didn’t change that either; Energy creates energy.

When I was brought into a group where there was a reluctance to be in session, or where the workplace itself was toxic or negative, I would often leave exhausted needing a long nap to recover my energy. The longer the day, the deeper the level of exhaustion.

The reason for the difference in outcomes was very simple: for those groups who communicated well, cooperated, and enjoyed coming together, all of the participants provided energetic input. Meaning that everyone provided positive energy to the group, thereby creating a positive and energetically charged outcome.

In the negative groups, participants “held” their energy to themselves. They didn’t want to participate, they often refused to be involved in group activity, and as such they drew energy away from the group, instead of contributing to it.


The Energy Sucking Vortex.

That may be a bit harsh, however, in some ways it is also accurate.

Last week, I was on what seemed like my 75th video meeting. As the group wrapped up I sat back and close my eyes. I was transported back to one of those difficult sessions of a few years ago, feeling completely exhausted, even thought the call was positive.

Why, I wondered, did I feel so tired?

Why, do so many of those around me report the same feeling of exhaustion, difficulty focusing, and lack of enthusiasm for “yet another meeting.”


I’m going to get a bit woohoo for a moment, then I will come back to my point.

We are all energy.

Every process of our lives is an exchange of energy, from a cell dividing, to the conversion of our food for energy. So, when we come together in person, shaking hands, smiling, laughing and interacting, we are actually exchanging energy. We are, in essence, projecting or sharing our energy directly with the other person.

This natural process has been labelled as many things from “Aura” to “Healing touch”. The principle is that direct or close contact between two or more individuals results in this energy exchange.


Now, picture yourself staring at your computer or phone or TV, mindlessly watching, but seldom emotionally connecting. You rarely feel the energy from your TV (unless there is lots of static electricity). This is what is happening on your video calls, while you are seeing, interacting and attempting to enjoy the interactions you are having with others, there is no energy exchange, the computer acts as a physical barrier between you and those on the call.

The result is that you are “emitting” your energy toward the computer without the reward of the energy exchange that normally occurs. This depletes your energy reserves and results in a situation where you are tired or exhausted by the effort of staying focused and positive. The relationship between you and screen is in a negative balance, energetically.

So, what can we do about the Energy Sucking Vortex of Doom that is your computer?

  • Create some energy refilling opportunities.
  • When there is a break in your call, get up and move around, movement creates energy which will recharge yourself.
  • If you have ten minutes on a break, go outside and breathe in the fresh air.
  • If you are upstairs, go downstairs and vice versa.
  • Make your body move, so it refuels your energy and allows you to get through the rest of your day.
  • Also, make sure you take time between calls, if at all possible, to rest your eyes and mind, and reset.

Video meetings are not going to go away anytime soon. In fact, I predict they will now be entrenched as a method of reducing travel cost and increasing productivity for business. So, in preparation, develop your best habits and set yourself up to succeed in the face of the impending energy sucking vortex that is the Video meeting.