Tips and Tricks for Nervousness in Interviewing
If you’re a person who gets really nervous when being interviewed for a job, you’re definitely not alone. Here are some tips and tricks to help you through the interview process. These recommendations will help get you in the proper frame of mind on the day of the interview and keep your nerves from taking over.
- Each time you think of the interview, frame it as an opportunity, not as a challenge or threat. Think to yourself “I’d love to” or “Thanks for the opportunity.” Fact: This is something you are co-creating and sharing, so speak positive to yourself about it as you would about anything else you create.
- While driving to it or otherwise sitting in your car before going into the interview (or in your room, if interviewing from home), say a tongue twister to be in the present moment and warm up your voice. Here’s one that works well and is fun:
I slit a sheet,
A sheet I slit,
and on that slitted sheet, I sit.
- Before the interview, while in your car or the restroom (or otherwise at home if it’s a virtual or phone interview), close your eyes and visualize the interview going smoothly.
- If you feel anxious before or during the interview process, acknowledge your anxiety to yourself. Take a deep breath and think to yourself “this is me being anxious”, and be okay with it. Tell yourself “You’re not in danger or under threat.” Repeat in your head as necessary.
- Remember: They already believe you to be qualified or you wouldn’t be there. They want to hire you or they wouldn’t have asked you to interview. They’ve never seen a perfect candidate. They can’t tell you’re nervous; don’t tell them. You have power here, too; you’re here to collect information on them, the job, and the organization. Know that it’ll be over soon.
- Breathe low and slow. Feel your ribs expand when inhaling and compress when exhaling. Close mouth when breathing in.
- Adopt a mindset of being a consultant. The interview is a collaboration.
- To get the right tone, pretend you’re speaking to a client or to someone you know on a friend basis (but not over friendly — there is such a thing as too comfortable!).
- See it as a conversation, not as a performance where there is a “right” way to do things. Use conversational language.
- Slow down and listen. Think about the question being asked. Don’t form the answer as someone is talking — just wait and hear what they have to say first.
- Respond in a structured way, especially when being asked a behavioral type question. The format of your answer should be: Problem/opportunity – solution – benefit/outcome. Or what/who, so what (why is it important), now what.
- If your mind goes blank and you can’t come up with an answer or story, at least try to say something related as not responding to a question at all is worse. It’s also okay to ask to come back to a question. Or to follow up at the end of the interview if you need to.
- Don’t worry about the future and the consequences of the interview; be present and in the moment. Make this moment go well. Focus on one moment at a time.
Hope this list was helpful! If the job is meant to be for you, it will be. If not, tomorrow is another day and there will be more opportunities.
You may also be interested in reading: Questions to Ask an Interviewer