Fear of Interviews is a Real Thing - How To Overcome It?
If you get butterflies in your stomach, trembling hands, and wobbly knees each time you have to appear for a job interview, then let us tell you that it is common and you are not alone. Fear of interviews is a real thing but you can not let it take over you and put a full stop to your career prospects, right? So allow us to share how to overcome it.
Let's First Address the Elephant in the Room
Interview anxiety, fear of Interviews, and turning into a nervous wreck, as a result, get the best of all, however, qualified they are for the job. Because the entire situation setting calls for that. Think of it, you will be appearing in front of a stranger who will be the creator or destroyer of your career. This person in the position of authority will judge every aspect of your being - from your appearance to how you shake hands, sit, what you say, how you say it, sell yourself, ask questions, breathe...
How can this not trigger your nerves and stress hormones? The stakes are made to appear so high. This is like a game where you are playing but you are not given a remote control, yet you can win or lose.
Many interviewees while giving interviews have felt trapped inside a room, feeling nauseated, unsure, and unclear of what hit them next. Feeling like this has caused them to blank out, blurt random thoughts, blabber, fidget and sweat non-stop.
This is bad.
Because this means the interviewer will now remember these signs rather than your qualifications and strengths.
Well, let's get to know how you can gain control of any trigger to enjoy the process of interviews. Yes, it is possible to change how you feel about job interviews.
If you keep calm, prepare well, and focus on the goal then you can learn through the experience a lot. In the end, it's not about whether you get the job or not but bettering yourself through each experience. And when the right job comes, it will all fit.
How To Overcome The Fear of Interviews?
The fear, anxiety, and nervousness of and from interviews occur not just before the interview but during and after it too. Hence, it's critically important to control them throughout to make the most out of an interview.
At the core, it all works out as you begin to control your mind and body such that they do not detail your performance and let the amazing you shine through.
Let's dive further into how you can switch your dreadful experience to a joyous one.
Before the Interview
1. Practice Self-Care
It is super important to take care of your body so that it listens to you during potentially stressful situations. For that, you need to get 6-8 hours of sleep, avoid junk food, and caffeine, and go for a morning walk regularly.
2. Keep All Causes of Stress at Bay
Think as to what could be some of the reasons that can add to your stress— location of the interview, the distance from your home, picking your outfit last minute, forgetting to carry an important document, laptop, or connectivity issues if it's a video interview? Plan efficiently to avoid these last minutes, give your mind plenty of time to organize, and be confident about everything.
These things are unrelated to your interview performance but have a crucial role in preparing you for it. So, pick out your outfit, prepare a folder with everything included (your resume, cover letter, business card, references, certifications, Pen, and notepad), plan your ride or install all the relevant apps on your laptop and even test out your tech in advance to be sure everything is in order.
3. Prepare for the Interview
Most importantly, if you prepare, and practice, you can easily overcome your fear of interviews. Well-done research is a great anxiety reliever. Now to prepare well, there are several points that you should keep in mind
- You must familiarize yourself with the company and the job that you are interviewing for. Read the latest news of the company and go through the JD once again.
- Practice the most common interview questions. If you have interviews before then reflect on those questions or else ask Google the kind of questions that come up for the position that you are applying to. In general, you must be ready to talk about your professional journey, What value you provide, and your strengths and weaknesses.
- You can not overdo this. The more you read and research, the more confident you will be.
During the Interview
Even if you are thoroughly prepped up, it is common to feel nervous during an interview. Here are the tactics you can leverage during an interview to gain more control of the situation
1. Relax and Just Breathe
Breathing is an effective confidence-boosting technique and so is visualization. Channel your energy towards the goals that you wish to fulfill and why this job can be a step closer to that. Take a few deep breaths before entering the room and in between when you are not speaking.
2. Take Your Time, There is no Rush
Knowing all the answers to every question asked is not important but what is essential is to be able to handle every question thrown at you. It's okay to pause before answering to be able to collect your thoughts. You can always take notes to condense brief sentences.
In case the answer doesn't come to you, you can always ask the interviewer a follow-up question to understand better or tell them that you will get back to them with an answer later on. This shows your accountability and ability to own up. This also becomes a talking point for you after the interview.
3. Remember You're Interviewing Them Too
It's a two-way interview and you must ask questions too based on your research about the company. While the interviewer is examining whether you are the right fit for their company or not, you are also examining the same about the company.
You must understand and be confident in the kind of work culture and growth prospects your interviewing company is providing to you.
After the Interview
Pat yourself on the back for having gone through the experience. And try to put down your notes with some key points to remember or follow up on. In case, you need to come back to the interviewer with an answer, prepare a well-thought email to share your response along with your gratitude for getting the opportunity, like:
“I would like to thank you for providing me with the opportunity to interview at your firm. I sincerely look forward to receiving the feedback from you”.
Once done, just sit back and relax.
DO NOT OVERTHINK
No good can come out of that. The best is to keep calm and hold patience.
It is okay if you do not make it through but you should always know that you will never lose control because these tactics will always come in handy.