Your palms are sweaty. Your voice is shaky. You face is flushed and your mouth is dry. You are probably talking too fast and bouncing your leg when you sit down. Your heart is racing and your stomach is in knots. Job Interview Nerves? Here are three ways to fight back.
Physical To-Do’s for Interview Nerves
Get plenty of rest, exercise and eat right. Make it easy on yourself by arriving early. If need be, practice the route before the day of the interview to confirm parking. Breathe. Take another deep breath. Do a power pose in the restroom. Hands on hips like Superman or fists in the air like you’ve just won the 100 meter dash at the Olympics. Smile like you mean it. If you can’t smile, bite on a pencil which will mimic a smile. Fool yourself by telling yourself the reactions you are having are excitement not fear. These simple, physical actions will lower your stress and tell your body you are ready!
Prepare for the Interview
If you are conducting a job search you should have answers to the top 50 interview questions. Write them down. Prepare answers for questions you would ask yourself after reviewing your resume. Ignoring issues doesn’t make you prepared. Do a few mock interview sessions with associates or family members. Try to mimic the interview process exactly, from the hand shake to the goodbye.
Research the company and the people on your interview schedule via LinkedIn and Google searches. You must be aware of the latest issues or news on the company, even if it doesn’t impact the position you are interviewing for. If you know anyone at the firm, call them and ask for advice and information on the company or the people you will be talking to.
Visualize yourself doing well. See yourself calmly answering questions and creating a conversation with the interviewer that is as beneficial to you as it is for them.
Lower the Stakes
Your nerves come from concern about how much is on the line: a job you need or want very badly or simply your personal reputation. Lower the stakes mentally by deciding you may not take the job if you get the offer. View this as an informational meeting where your goal is to get the information you need. Convince yourself that your assessment of the company and the position is as important as the interviewer’s assessment of you. It is! Tell yourself you won’t make any decisions about the position from this interview. This is just a step in the process, not the whole process.