Gen Z reports anxiety linked to virtual work — but many still want remote option

Many members of Generation Z have gone straight from remote learning to remote working, and it may be taking a toll, The Wall Street Journal reported Feb. 20.

Many Gen Z members, born after 1997, graduated college during the pandemic and have been working virtually since then — and generally seem to like it that way. A fall 2020 survey showed that 69 percent of Gen Z wants to work remotely at least half the time. 

However, the survey, carried out by professors Santor Nishizaki, EdD, and James DellaNeve, EdD, also revealed that half of the respondents reported increases in symptoms of depression and anxiety in relation to working from home. Working remotely without the chance to develop in-person work relationships, on top of often being the youngest member of the team, can compound regular worries about work performance. 

"This is the cohort with the least amount of person-to-person interaction while growing up," Dr. Nishizaki told the Journal

Young adulthood is also one of the loneliest times in life, the report noted. Moving frequently, not having a romantic partner or solid friend group and living apart from family all can be contributors to the isolation Gen Z may feel. 

"I haven't been able to form relationships with the people I'm working with as easily,"  Elizabeth Mooneyham, a recent college graduate and remote worker, told the Journal. "I can become isolated really quickly if I let myself."

Read the full article here

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