The Need to Unplug Amid COVID-19


Aidan Youngs, Business Director

One year ago, it would have been crazy to think that we would be living our lives through our computer screens, even though we’ve been moving in this direction for the past few years. Today, online events are commonplace, with classes and meetings occurring through various intermediaries like Zoom, Webex and Google Teams. Our dependence on technology has progressed further than anticipated in the last year because of the pandemic’s extenuating circumstances. Now, most of us have online meetings throughout the day and even some on weekends. Although it is easier than ever to attend events because they are virtually accessible, it has become harder to truly unplug and relax from all of the work and stress that accompany online classes. 

Even though we are constantly seeing our classmates and friends through Zoom classes or club meetings, it is hard to feel like we are connecting with others when we cannot interact face-to-face. It is essential to turn off the computer once in a while and make sure we find a way to safely see our friends and family. There have been days when I wake up and log on to Zoom, and by the time I finish classes, it is already dark out. I’ve lost the ability to go outside and get some fresh air and much-needed vitamin D. The day can easily get away from us, especially amid midterms and other strenuous academic tasks. 

Last year, attending class meant getting ready and leaving early to walk to class. Now, we don’t even have to leave our beds to attend classes, making it easier for us to simply not get out and be active. The fact that we have mainly been living our lives virtually has drastically changed the way we go through our daily tasks and how we interpret our college experience. It can feel as though we’ve just been accumulating credits without really progressing because we haven’t even left our rooms to do so. 

Especially with all of the ups and downs of the last year, it is crucial to stay connected with our peers and continue to create and build relationships with others to feel like we are really making the most of our time at Fordham. It is increasingly important to get out and be active and connected on campus. One of the best ways to feel connected to campus is to get out onto Eddie’s with some friends, take classes from the quad or just hang out and relax. 

One of the most important things I have found is the value of being outdoors whenever I can. In the past, we wouldn’t have to make time to get outside because it was part of everyday life. Now, we really need to prioritize mental health and give ourselves some time to decompress after a long day of online classes. Unfortunately, Zoom fatigue is a common consequence of the online learning modality. Making the most out of online courses can be difficult. Still, it’s important to remember that we’re all in this together and we can all do our part to contribute to the Fordham community despite the physical restrictions that might be in place.