Everyone suffers from interview nerves to some degree so the trick is to learn how to keep your nervousness in-check and to even harness it to help you deliver your best interview performance. After all, being interviewed is like performing. This may be why you feel so nervous, you feel like you’re on show. Well don’t worry, let us explain to you how you can overcome your interview nerves once and for all with our top 10 tips.
Overcoming Interview Nerves: Everyone gets them
First thing to remember is it’s completely natural to feel nervous about an interview. For one thing, this is your big chance to land your dream job so the stakes are high. Secondly, one or more interviewers are about to scrutinise everything you say, what you are wearing and your body language. Thirdly, interviewers may ask difficult questions so it is important to be prepared and practice some interview questions.
Try to keep your interview nerves under control as they can distract you from giving strong and thoughtful answers to the interviewer.
Let’s get down to how you are going to harness your anxiety on the big day in question!
If you are unfamiliar with the location of your interview, it pays to visit the location before your interview. Also, if you are going to be driving to the interview and the offices don’t have parking, check out your parking options ahead of time which will help prevent you from getting lost and potentially being late.
It may be a good idea to travel to the interview location at the same time of day as your interview so you know what the traffic is going to be like or if you are travelling by public transport check the timetable and any connections in advance. This will help to make sure you arrive at your interview time to avoid becoming flustered and stressed.
Read our other blogs on interview tips and hints.
Practice, practice, practice! The more you practice possible interview questions, the more you will feel confident in an interview therefore keeping your nerves under control.
Another way to stay positive ahead of time is to carry out the visualisation technique. This involves visualising the interview process happening exactly how you want it to and appearing confident to your interviewer. The more you practice this the more your body will associate the interview process with feeling confident.
4. Feel up beat
On the way to your interview in order to stop yourself thinking negative thoughts, which can feed your nervousness, listen to upbeat music that you enjoy. If you are using headphones just remember to take them off before you enter the building for your interview. Even wearing headphones in the reception area will make you look distracted!
No matter how much you want the job, try not to put so much pressure on yourself that you come across as desperate for the role. This can make you more nervous than you need to be and you may not come across as confidently to the interviewer as you could.
6. Feel Confident
Feeling confident may be the last thing you feel like when attending a job interview. However keep to the forefront of your mind that the company called you to an interview because they liked your CV. Before the interview be aware of your thoughts and if you notice yourself thinking any negative or counterproductive thoughts, stop yourself and think of a positive thought.
7. Power Poses
It may sound silly but research has shown that if you adopt a power pose for 2 minutes it will make you feel more confident. For example, channel your inner Wonder Woman or Superman for 2 minutes and feel your confidence rising! Harvard Business School found that striking a power pose decreases the stress hormone cortisol.
Leading up to, and during the interview be aware of your breathing. If you find yourself holding your breath because you are feeling anxious or breathing too quickly, slow your breathing down by taking long, slow breaths. This is one of the most effective ways of controlling your nerves if you feel they are getting out of control.
9. Chewing Gum
It may sound wacky but research has found that chewing gum reduces anxiety and makes you more alert, which is exactly how you want to feel during your interview! So ditch the coffee which will only add to your nerves and switch it for some chewing gum – just remember to throw away the chewing gum before you enter the building!
10. Pace Yourself
During the interview if you find you are talking too quickly or stumbling over your words, slow down and take a deep breath. Don’t be afraid to take pauses, after all it comes across as if you are thoughtful and considerate with your responses.
If you found this article useful, why not check out our other top tips and guides for helping you in your job hunting process.