Maybe you’ve dreamed about this opportunity for years, you’ve researched the company and prepared for weeks, antagonizing over your interview attire, your handshake and your answers. It all looks as if you’re as organized as possible, and the interview will be a walk in the park.
But here’s the catch: you’re an absolute nervous wreck.
Your palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy…wait, isn’t that an Eminem lyric?
Seriously though, pre-interview jitters can be the most annoying thing in the world, so if you’re worrying about your nerves sabotaging your chances of success, fret not! Our 8 expert tips will guarantee to calm your nerves and concentrate on landing the job.
Don’t forget to eat breakfast
Or lunch! Depending on what time your interview is. And we don’t mean appeasing your shaking hands by chowing down on chocolate or chips (as tempting as that may be). A nutritious meal rich in complex carbohydrates and protein will help you concentrate and perform. What about porridge with fruit? Or whole meal bread and eggs? Nourishing your body will also nourish your mind.
Water hydrates your brain, which it turn makes it function better and makes it easier to concentrate. Many teachers advise that students drink 250ml of water before an exam to help them focus. Well, the same goes for job interviews. Grab a bottle of H2O and slurp that down en route, but don’t drink too much, you don’t want to be bursting for it when you’re in the middle of showcasing last year’s sales reports.
Go for a walk
Get some exercise and get that blood flowing! Going for a walk will also be a great way of observing your surroundings and getting out of your head. If there’s a park nearby, get some fresh air and a healthy dose of nature.
Plan your route and be early
Give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination, taking into account potential traffic or mishaps, that way it’ll be one less thing to stress about and you can make your journey a relaxed one. If you’re taking public transport, you can read your interview notes on the train, or if you’re taking the car listen to music that’ll chill you out or pump you up (depending on what you find helps you best). If you’re early, you’ll be able to navigate the building and find the right room without showing up flustered. Remember the small amount of time you have immediately before an interview can dictate the mood you’ll be in when it’s crunch time.
Create an interview cheat sheet
To save your brain the hassle, create an interview cheat sheet that has the following all in one place:
- The name of the company and the person who’s interviewing you
- The address
- The time
- Bullet points of your skills, experience and evidence of accomplished projects
- A list of potential questions and answers
You can have print a physical copy if you prefer, but make sure you have a digital one too in case anything goes pear shaped and you spill your Starbucks all over your life line. A cheat sheet will make the info clearer and easier to remember, and help calm you down when you’re overthinking.
Turn to someone you trust for encouragement
Sometimes it’s hard to get ourselves out of our head, so why not share your worries with a friend or family member? Find someone you trust to talk through your anxiety and get some reassurance. They might have some great advice or simply be a distraction from the kafuffle in your mind. A little encouragement goes a long way.
Try to think rationally and positively
Though your mind might be riddled with ‘what if’s’, remind yourself rationally what’s likely to happen. Instead of antagonizing over sweating, being stuck in traffic because of a car crash, or not being able to find the interview room, find rational ways of coping and make a plan. If you’re attitude is negative and you think you won’t do great – that’ll show. Even if you’re extremely nervous, smiling and visualizing the interview going well will trick your brain into feeling confident.
Did these tips help with your interview nerves? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. If you’re looking for a new job, check out our current vacancies.