job interview

How to Handle Stress and Anxiety at a Job Interview

Job interviews are a stressful experience for most people. You feel out your comfort zone and many people don’t like the thought of being put in the ‘limelight.’ The usual concerns are that you will get embarrassed during the interview, you won’t be able to answer questions and that it will generally not go well. Stress and anxiety can cause you to trip up, even if you have the right skills and experience for the role, so it is important that you manage these. These are some ways to handle the pressure of a job interview.

Prepare in Advance

The best way to calm your nerves before an interview is to make sure you prepare your answers in advance. If you are well prepared, you will be more likely to be able to answer the questions clearly and concisely. The best way to prepare is by analysing the job description and making sure you can answer any questions related to this, as well as the standard questions like working in a team or working under pressure. The recruiter wants to know that you have the right skills and experience for the role and preparation is key to be able to answer the questions effectively.

Arrive on Time

If you turn up to the interview late, you will instantly feel on the back foot, and you’re likely to be stressed and anxious from the offset. It is good practice to arrive at your interview around 10 minutes before it is due to start. If you’re not quite sure how long it will take you to get there, do a practice run in advance of the interview, and prepare for any delays. It is always better to be early than late.

Research the Company

Make sure you don’t turn up to the interview without substantial knowledge of the company, as you may be asked questions relating to the company at any time. Research what the company does, their competitors, the industries they work in and any major achievements. Make sure you show passion and enthusiasm when talking about the company during the interview. The last thing any recruiter wants to feel is that you have just shown up for interview for any job, without taking time to understand the company.

Don’t Rush

Don’t be tempted to just rush the interview to get to the end. It is much more effective to take your time and pause when required. If you can’t think of an answer just ask the interviewer if you can take a few minutes to think or ask them if they could return to the question later. It is more important to give clear and concise answers, than to just rush through the questions. It will also be more likely to cause you to become stressed and anxious. Think about the interview as a conversation, and by doing this, you will instantly feel more relaxed.

Deep Breaths

The ability to control your breath is an important part of staying in control during an interview. Taking long deep breaths can help to keep you in a calm state of mind, which is imperative during an interview. A quick mediation before the interview will also help ensure your body is in a calm state before you start the process.

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