Dealing with Interview Anxiety.

by - 17:16:00

Hello everyone, hope you are well! 


If you're someone who often reads my blog posts you'll probably be aware that I have re-designed it, I hope you like it! I am still tweeking bits so I do apologise if it looks unfinished. I also wanted to say a massive thank you for my body image post - I did not expect to get so much great feedback from it but I love how positive everyone has been about it! If you haven't read it click the link and tell me what you think.

Today's post is about dealing with interview anxiety. We all get nervous about interviews, it's that one moment that you really have to sell yourself and the interviewer judges you in that moment. It's a scary thing and you have every right to feel nervous. However there's plenty of ways to deal with the anxiety you feel before an interview so let me get straight into it!

I'm quite a strange person when it comes to interviews, what I mean by that is I actually really enjoy them - and yes I suffer with anxiety. I always get so worked up beforehand, I feel sick, I can't eat anything, I worry about everything in my head, then I go into the interview and start talking and I go from this mess of a person to completely calm and relaxed. Perhaps I feel better when I see the person who is going to interview me, or the environment calms me, or I just snap into a professional mode straight away. Whatever it is, we're all different, and we all experience things differently but there are simple ways we can all follow to help us out a little!



Simple steps to deal with interview anxiety: 


πŸ“š Take control by preparing.

This is something that will really help you. If you re-read the job advert and write a list of everything they want you to have skills in, and then write underneath how you have those skills. You can then write down anything else you may want to tell the interviewer, even prepare some questions you want to ask beforehand. Give yourself at least three days to prepare (depending on what the job is), jot down notes, get someone to do a practise interview for you - it will make you feel a hundred percent better about it I promise. You can even practise handshakes with family members - I know the smallest things can affect your nerves so preparing for absolutely everything will honestly help you out so much.

It's also super helpful to go to the place of the interview a few days before or map it all out so you don't have to worry about getting there.

πŸ“š Be careful what you eat or drink beforehand.

You don't want to drink too much caffeine beforehand, obviously if you wake up feeling a bit sleepy then have a cup of coffee/tea but don't overdo it, one will be enough. Obviously don't drink any alcohol, you may think that it will help with your nerves but it is probably one of the worst things to do. Eating wise, if it's in the morning have some breakfast - it's a very important meal to eat anyway, it gives you that morning energy to start you off for the day and you don't want your stomach growling through the interview. If it's later on in the day try not to eat a massive lunch as you might find that it can make you feel a bit sleepy - I'm sure you've all experienced having a massive meal and just nodding off on the sofa in the evening! I should probably take this advice myself as I do find personally that I struggle to eat but my most recent interview I had which was in the afternoon, I made sure I had eaten breakfast and I tried to eat a little something just before so I was very hungry two hours later after it!

πŸ“š Don't force yourself to calm down.

What I mean by this is sometimes when you're panicking so much about something and you tell yourself 'you need calm down, you're being stupid, just stop' this can sometimes make you feel more stressed. Something that I find helpful is either get someone to go with you (not into the interview, but the journey there) as it can be soothing to have someone to talk to and distracts you a little from the nerves. Or if no one is able to go with you maybe you can ring someone on your way there who can help to calm you down.

πŸ“š Any thoughts that you start to worry about - write them down.

If you're feeling anxious about an interview write down everything that is bothering you. For example you might be thinking 'I'm not good enough for this' and then next to it jot down why do you feel like that and ways to prove that you are good enough. For example 'I've learnt about that subject in this course.' It can be quite therapeutic to write down thoughts and list ways to cope with the issues.

πŸ“š Breathing techniques.

If you're panicking too much then take a moment to breathe. If you're waiting outside the building and you're feeling too anxious about going in, then take a moment, close your eyes, take some deep breaths and just tell yourself 'you know what, I got this.' Plant a smile on your face, even if you're not feeling too happy at that moment, planting a smile can often help you to feel a little better.

πŸ“š Greet the receptionist and start the interview casually.

What I mean by this is when you've gone into the building and you have to go up to the receptionist to ask where you need to go, ask them how they are, ask them if they've had a good day so far, for one I'm sure it'll make their day feel a lot brighter and you'll probably find you'll feel more confident. When you greet the interviewer after the handshake ask the same questions 'hows your day going,' you'll likely find that they'll comment on something like that to begin with, they may say how are you doing, or they might comment on the weather! (typical topic for people in the UK).

πŸ“š Treat yourself well.

Make sure you get enough sleep, perhaps even pamper yourself the night before! Or cook your favourite meal, it's quite a good idea to have a treat waiting for you after the interview too. Perhaps plan that on the day you're going out to eat for a meal in the evening, when you have something to look forward to it makes you feel a lot better.

πŸ“š Interview the Interviewer.

After all you are deciding if you want to work there too! Ask them questions about the company, a favourite thing of mine is at the end when they give you time to ask questions ask them this - 'what do you like about the company.' Most of the time they don't expect it, it's as if you're turning the interview onto them and in a way it takes some of the pressure off of you, and you can take a moment to listen, and it's also a good thing to learn more about the company you are interviewing for.

πŸ“š Take your time.

Don't rush you answers. They are not going to mind if you take a minute or so to think about your answer, if you feel too anxious for it to be silent then if you have a drink at the table, take a sip of it, that way they just think your mouth is dry - which is more than likely after talking constantly! But this way it gives you those minutes to really think about your answer. Even take a note book in with you, you can have some of your notes on there, or you can use it to make notes when the interviewer mentions things.


I hope these tips have been helpful! A lot of them come from my own experiences and also from what I have learnt myself from reading other articles/blogs about it when I needed it.

Have you got any interview tips?

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Self-care book recommendation: 

The book I recommend today is - Happy by Fearne Cotton. This book is wonderful, it talks about everything to do with mental health and ways we can help ourselves. I really enjoyed the questions and answers in the book, for example she speaks to Tom Fletcher from McFly about his Bipolar and what he does daily to keep it in check. It also has interactive parts in the book. You can get it from here: 







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38 comments

  1. This is such a great post Chloe! Interviews can be really nerve wracking but I agree, the more we prepare, the more relaxed we will feel on the day. That's a fab tip about chatting to the receptionist. I used to work on reception in an old job and sometimes managers would come and ask me what I thought of the candidate. From then on, I always made an effort with the receptionist if I had an interview myself, as you never know and it also helps you calm down a bit before the interview too. Thank you for sharing you suggestions and I love your book recommendation, Happy is a great read! <3 xx

    Bexa | www.hellobexa.com

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    1. Thank you so much! That's something good to know, I never really thought that managers would ask the receptionist what they thought! But I always feel it calms me down at the beginning to just have a little chat with them :) xx

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  2. I actually have a tip from the other side of the interview table��
    Interviewers are probably nervous too - I know I was, and it’s not like I only did it a few times. But there’s really a lot of pressure to hire the right candidate (because making the wrong choice is extremely expensive) and you only have a very limited time to form an impression of the person you’re interviewing. That can be grounds for being nervous - because at some level, you have to perform as an interviewer as well. It’s not just a job, it’s a potential collegue, that you might have to work looong hours with.
    Research research research: I’ve always asked my candidates in the end if they had any questions and often they just went blank! Sometimes I grilled them and then asked what they could tell me about this company - if they couldn’t answer I would know that they haven’t bothered to do the research. Which from my side of the table equals to “I really don’t care about this job!” If I’ve covered their questions in my own presentation, then you just say “no, you covered the questions I had” - and don’t be afraid to ask about the wage. It’s sort of touchy subject in Denmark, and it might not be anywhere else, but you kinda need to know if you can make a living��

    I love your post, because I’ve been to interviews myself where nervΓΈs kind of got away with me and I think your tips are spot on. It really is about those simple things, like eating properly, sleeping, preparing, writing questions etc. And quite honestly; from an interviewers point of view, you can TELL if someone is prepared, this both regarding facts from research and getting proper sleep...��
    Just thought of this...I was nervous before I interviewed candidates, but like you I seemed to settle down as soon as I got started... yeah... don’t know why that is, though��
    Thank you for the read
    Linda _

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    1. It's good to know about the interviewers perspective as well! But yes definitely the interviewer will of course be nervous as well, I guess I wouldn't know too much about picking someone for the job as I've not been in that position but its handy to get that advice from you so thank you for that :) I always make sure I have some questions prepared for the end of the interview, I feel it shows that you actually have an interest in the job. I think most of the interviews I've had they've told me the wage beforehand but I'm not sure if that's the usual thing they do!

      Thank you so much, glad you enjoyed reading it. And yeah I do find it a little strange how nervous I am just before but then as soon as I start the interview I'm completely calm. x

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  3. Great post and advice, When ever I go on an interview I always think they need me just as much as I need them!

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    1. Thank you! Yeah it's definitely a good way to think about it! x

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  4. Interviews and anxiety something we all go through in our lives. Your tips are amazing..To control anxiety I write down things and breathing exercises always work. Loved the post.
    Thanks for sharing!!

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    1. Thank you! Yeah definitely writing things down and breathing exercises are super helpful :) x

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  5. this is really wise advice Chloe - I think slowing down speaking is really important - I think what I am going to say first before I speak - as an interviewer too you don't notice this. And thank you for the info about fern cotton's book - I've been wondering whether to get it. Love Bec :-) ps pinned and tweeted :-)

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    1. Thank you so much! Yes definitely, I know when you get nervous sometimes you can speak really quickly, but it's good to make sure you're not rushing. No worries - it's a great book, really inspiring and such a positive read for sure.

      Thank you! x

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  6. Great tips! I feel like a lot of my anxiety comes from not feeling prepared, so taking control is very helpful. Thanks!

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    1. Thank you! Yes definitely being prepared helps a lot x

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  7. Really good tips!! I'm currently into the process of finding a new jobs, so I should get interviews often soon (hopefully! haha)
    I'm generally a bit nervous but I'm always trying to remember it's an interview in both ways (like you mentioned). It's also for me to see if I like the company. So I'm trying to see it as a conversation rather then putting too much pressure on myself.
    I never dare to have a notebook during an interview though! I will take one anyway next time, just in case :) Thanks for the tips!

    Laura
    https://peanutsandcacahuetes.com/

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    1. Thank you! Ah good luck, I'm sure you'll do great! aha yeah I guess people are different, sometimes its just handy to have a notebook as you never know you might need to write down some details! :) x

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  8. These are great tips. You definitely shouldn't eat a big smelly meal before hand that's filled with garlic and onions!! I hate people who don't want to answer your questions directly and try to give a roundabout answer. We have to know if it's a good fit for us, not just for them!

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    1. Thank you! Yes definitely, I can't imagine that being a pleasant experience for the interviewer if all you can smell is garlic and onion! x

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  9. You have some great tips here. Interviewing is always causes some anxiety. I will save this post when I need it in the future. I will share it with my daughter as well. Thanks, again!

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  10. Great suggestions! I hate interviewing. It seems like no matter how much I prepare or if I'm not really sure it's a position I'd even want, I turn into a sweaty, stuttering mess. I think you nailed it with the judgement aspect, and it always boggles my mind when someone says they actually like interviews. Nonetheless, these are great tips for anyone interviewing!

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    1. Thank you! I'm definitely the same to begin with but I'm not sure how I end up enjoying them - it is strange! x

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  11. I am loving your tips and they will be very help to many. I like you love love interviews for some reason and get excited and never stop yapping during them.

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    1. Thank you! Yeah it's odd, but once I get started I just love it, and I probably do talk to much! x

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  12. Great post, I think it is natural to get nervous in interview and to try to use that energy to help you.

    https://doolittledays.co.uk/

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  13. I always find writing any worries down really helps my anxiety so this is a great tip! I always prefer to feel prepared too

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    1. Yeah definitely is a great way to help with anxiety! x

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  14. These are all great tips with interview anxiety. I've had it so bad in the past that I avoided interviews at all costs. Thankfully I have overcome my anxiety problems for the most part but still an interview is a time for anyone to be anxious x

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    1. Thank you! Yeah I've definitely had times where I desperately tried anything to not have to do an interview - but of course, everyone will always feel a little nervous before interviews. x

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  15. I sometimes get nervous at interviews myself. I like the idea of asking the interviewer what they like about the company though. I hadn't thought of that one before. That's a great question to ask.

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    1. Yeah I love that question, someone told me to ask that a few years ago and it's just always stuck with me! It gives you a bit of insight into the company and it's nice to let the interviewer do the talking for a few minutes or so! x

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  16. Some great tips here it's been 9 years since I have had an interview so I know I would be a nervour wreck should I need to have one in the future

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  17. This is such a brilliant and helpful post. I suffer with anxiety and I actually struggle so badly with interviews. I graduated in 2007 and had a gazillion interviews and never got the job and I know its because I become a blithering wreck, I wouldn't want to hire me either haha! These are great tips and really useful to look back on!

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    1. Thank you! Aw yeah I know it can be so difficult especially with nerves and anxiety getting the better of you. I always think I'm going to be sick before interviews because of how anxious I feel! x

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  18. This is great. I'm the worst on interviews. Really. On my last interview I had to ask for a break so I could go for a wee because I was no nervous. I got the job anyway but I think that the interview was an absolute disaster.

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    1. Well done on getting the job! I guess you'll learn from the experience and even if it was a disaster you still got the job in the end! :) x

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  19. This is such a great post Chloe. I've always struggled with interviews as I get very anxious and worry about them. Great tips.

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    1. Aw thank you! I hope these tips can help you :) xx

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