To feel nervous before an interview is normal. Your potential employer will analyze and evaluate you: your skills, your manners, your actions, and even your appearance. What makes you nervous is the fear that you might say the wrong thing or make the wrong move. You don’t have the slightest idea of what’s going to happen, and thus you don’t know how to behave.
Listed below are some of the ways to overcome the feeling of nervousness and helplessness. Read them and start practicing them to reduce the jittery feeling during an interview.
- Be prepared.
Imagine yourself practicing for a big football game or getting ready for the student council elections. What are the things you need to do in order for you to win? Prepare and practice hard. It’s the same when it comes to job interviews. Do your research about the company and the position you’re applying for, review your research, and practice answering possible questions.
One of the best ways to overcome nervousness is by being well-prepared. However, don’t be too confident. A little nervousness can help you in anticipating events so that you can perform better.
- Stay positive.
Don’t depress yourself by overthinking about what could possibly happen. Tell yourself that you are ready and that you can do it.
It’s best if you focus on things that make you feel good, like listening to music on your car’s radio or on your iPod while on your way to the interview. Take a break and don’t pressure yourself too much. Freshen up and try to arrive earlier than the scheduled time.
- Look smart and confident.
Always remember that even if you can’t control the employer’s decisions, you can always control the way you look and the way you present yourself. They like your resume, your cover letter, or the impression you made on the first screening, and that’s why they called for an interview—you should always look smart and professional for that reason.
Enthusiasm will catch your interviewer’s attention, but too much of it might lead him or her to not like you at all. Be confident enough and never act like you are desperate to get the job. Show professionalism by staying calm and composed.
- Learn to relax.
Before you enter the room, try doing some breathing exercises (inhale and exhale slowly). Once the interview starts, remember to stay calm and collected. If you catch yourself talking too fast, gently slow down and pause for a while. Don’t be afraid to take gaps between your sentences. If you don’t pause every now and then, you might blurt out things that you shouldn’t say.
Interviewers will frequently ask tough questions, and you might have a hard time answering some of them. When this happens, don’t be afraid to say that you need a moment to think. Deal with these questions by thinking of ways you could tell something about your strengths. No matter how hard the question is, you shouldn’t let yourself get lost during the interview. Focus and make sure to leave a positive impression at the end of it.
A job opportunity only comes around once in a blue moon, and you needn’t let it pass you by just because you feel nervous or anxious. If you know that you are well-prepared, you don’t have any reason to feel uneasy. Just be yourself and try to stay as positive, confident, and relaxed as you can.