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Facing Anxiety Over Job Interviews

How to get through it. 

So, you found exactly the job you’re looking for.

You think you’re the perfect fit!

But there’s some work you’ll have to do to get it…

The oh-so-daunting job interview is looming ahead of you and no matter what you do, you can’t stop thinking about it. You’re worried that the interviewer will see all that anxiety you’re feeling, that you’ll be stumped on how to answer tough questions, or that you’ll accidentally say something embarrassing. The infinite possibilities of how everything could go terribly wrong won’t stop haunting you!

First of all- calm down.

We’ve all been in your shoes. When your dream job is hanging on the line, it’s no surprise that you will want to impress.

But guess what?

Even the people who come across as the most confident person in the room, are experiencing those nerves too. Feeling anxious about a job interview is totally normal, and in no way does it have to hold you back from acing it.

Luckily, we’ve come up with a guide on exactly how to deal with anxiety over a job interview. So, without further ado, here are some tips and tricks:

Be Prepared


The very best thing you can do for yourself is to prepare. The more you have to say, the more confident you will feel going into the interview. If you walk into an interview having done no preparation, you won’t feel nearly as sure in yourself. Look into what the most common questions asked during an interview are and make sure you round up some knowledge based around those kinds of questions. When you’ve done the research, you’ll have things ready to talk about, which you should be able to creatively apply to a variety of questions, as opposed to having to come up with something on the spot.

So, how do you prepare for a job interview, you might ask?

-Research your employer. Become familiar with the organisation, their accomplishments, their mission. If you can, have a look into your interviewer as well. Check out their LinkedIn and learn more about what their role is. The more you know about the institution you’re applying for and the people you’ll be working with, the more invested and dedicated you will come across in the interview. When the interviewer hears how much you know about the job and the company- they’ll be really impressed and take seriously the fact that you really care about getting this job!

-Research the industry. In addition to researching the company, research the industry and gain some knowledge about what, exactly, your goals and skills should be going into the position you are applying for. If you’re applying for a marketing position, talk about the importance of mastering SEO. Or, if you’re applying as a graphic designer, bring up some of the new software tools you’ve been using- whatever information you find and deem to be relevant, have it in your back pocket to bring up at some point during the interview.

Don’t Force Away Stress


Embrace your stress.

As incredibly odd that may sound, it’s actually better to accept any nerves or anxiety that you’re experiencing. Telling yourself to stop being anxious, and freaking out over the fact that you are anxious, is only going to perpetually make you even more anxious!

Feeling interview anxiety is actually an indicator that you really care. At the end of the day, anxiety is just another manifestation of adrenaline, and the excitement we feel about a job can present itself as nerves. Accept that you are nervous, embrace it, and shift the dialogue in your brain to remind it that this is just a sign of you wanting to do well! When you start thinking of your anxiety as a “normal” or even “positive” thing, this will help you to stop hyper analysing those feelings, and to instead appreciate facing the matters at hand, nerves and all.

Here’s an extra tip: If you’re someone who struggles with breathing when you’re anxious, really do your best to pay attention to this. It’s common for people not to realise how much they are actually holding in their breath when they are nervous. This will make you sound and feel more anxious. However, breathing deeply can be difficult when you’re feeling tense, so if you find it challenging in the moment, try letting out a sigh whenever you feel your chest tightening up- this should help relax you a bit by getting out that tension you’re holding in.

Be Kind to Yourself


What you do leading up to the interview can make a difference in how centered and prepared you feel.

Get a good night of sleep. Don’t stay up all night thinking about the interview! A sleep deprived brain is going to be no use.

Have a good breakfast. Eat something healthy and balanced that is going to give you energy and make you feel happy. Avoid coffee or at least avoid more than a small coffee, if you can. Caffeine isn’t going to help the pre-interview jitters. You can immediately treat yourself with a nice big coffee when the interview is over.

Listen to your favourite music. Music is known to reduce stress responses, so enjoying some of your favourite tunes beforehand could help pump you up or calm you down, whichever you prefer, before the interview.

Remind yourself that you are deserving of this job. The more you tell yourself this, the better you will present and actually convince your interviewer of this. Remember that you have done lots of hard work to get to this point, and you should be proud of yourself for scoring this interview. The fact that they want to interview you in the first place means they already thought you’re awesome!

Imagine the Interview as a Conversation


Think of this less as an interview, and more as a conversation, as backwards as that may sound. Sometimes people go into interviews way too focused on the “formal” aspects of it, and as a result can come across more stiff, less comfortable, and not showing who they really are. The interviewer wants to know whether you’re qualified for the job, but they also want to know who you are as a person! Smile, try to get to know your interviewer, and ask them how their day has been. Feeling anxious causes people to become too self-focused. Get outside of your head, engage with the hiring manager and actually enjoy the conversation. This will help you feel less nervous.

Congratulate Yourself


Regardless of how the interview goes, you should be proud of yourself for working so hard, getting the interview, and going through with it! The hard part is over, now you get to take a deep breath and go celebrate your accomplishments. Do something enjoyable for yourself- grab dinner with friends or watch your favourite film with that cup of coffee you deprived yourself of.

Whatever you do, do not sit around and play the interview on repeat in your head all day long. Dwelling on what you could or couldn’t have done differently will not help anything.

Also, remember to send a thank you note to your interviewer. No need for anything fancy, just shoot a quick one or two sentence email thanking them for the interview as a display of respect. They will definitely appreciate the gesture.

If you have any more questions on how to do well during a job interview, or if you are looking for a job, our team can not only help you find a job abroad but we will also help you with the application and interview process.

Simply contact us and we will get back to you shortly.

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