Tips to Reduce Nervousness and Anxiety When Participating in Job Interviews

Feeling stressed and anxious during an interview can prevent the employer from accurately evaluating your abilities. Applying tips to reduce interview stress can help you stay calm and mentally prepared, which will increase your confidence in answering questions and lead to a successful outcome.

Tips to reduce stress during an interview

Stress and nervousness when participating in an interview is a situation many people face

Stress and nervousness when participating in an interview is a situation many people face

Participating in Job Interviews

Feeling stressed and nervous during job interviews is a common experience. Interviews are typically understood as a purposeful exchange of information (through questions and answers) between two or more people. Interviews can be focused on the interviewee’s personal information or related to issues or fields of interest.

In reality, almost everyone has undergone at least a few job interviews in their lifetime. Interviews are often considered environments that make people feel anxious and tense, which can occur before or during the interview.

Psychological stress often originates from a lack of confidence and fear of receiving negative feedback. In addition, setting high expectations can also create invisible pressure. These are also thought to be the causes of stress and nervousness.

Moreover, stress during interviews can also be caused by the following factors:

  • Not knowing enough about the employer
  • Not preparing answers to questions in advance
  • Wearing inappropriate attire or having improper body language
  • Feeling mentally unstable
  • Experiencing health issues

Feeling stressed during interviews is a common problem. Remember that stress affects everyone differently, and it can cause different symptoms in each individual. Common symptoms include:

  • Rapid heart rate
  • Nausea
  • Blushing
  • Sweating
  • Fear that anxiety will spiral out of control
  • Shortness of breath
  • Dizziness
  • Voice trembling
  • Irrational thinking
  • Delusional thoughts

It is important to know how stress during job interviews affects you personally. At the same time, it is important to proactively cope with stress through appropriate solutions, such as training and thorough preparation.

Tips to reduce stress and anxiety when participating in an interview:

Tips to reduce stress before the interview:

There are a few things you can do to prepare yourself and reduce stress when thinking about the interview. Some of these tips include:

  • Practice beforehand: You can practice your reactions in front of a mirror. Pay attention to your facial expressions, body language, and hand gestures.
  • You can ask someone to help you with a “mock” interview before the actual interview. Treat this as a real interview, from preparing to attire and demeanor. For some people, wearing interview attire can trigger feelings of anxiety and nervousness. It’s best to choose formal but comfortable attire.
  • Practice the short introduction at the beginning of the interview. For many people, this is the most stressful part of the interview. However, mastering this introduction can make the interview smoother. Practice this part more in front of a mirror while focusing on positive expressions on your face. It’s best to have a sincere smile.

How to relieve stress during an interview

You can try to practice interviewing in front of the mirror several times to prepare for the official interview

Plan ahead:

  • Write down the questions you want to ask the employer at the end of the interview. Practice asking them out loud at home.
  • Take time to research the company. Understand the company’s name, branch, headquarters location, history of establishment and development, personnel, company culture, values and operating principles, and prominent achievements.
  • Check the route map from your location to the interview location.
  • This will allow you to be proactive and have more time to travel. Consider limiting or avoiding caffeine on the day of the interview.
  • Arrive at the interview location about 15-30 minutes early, which is also a tip to help you reduce stress.
  • When you arrive early, you should take advantage of observing the atmosphere of the company you are interviewing for.
  • At the same time, calm yourself and prepare yourself mentally.

Prepare mentally:

  • Exercise to relax your body. You can wake up and walk or run. You can also go to the gym or do any physical activity.
  • People who exercise regularly often have a calm and confident posture.
  • Physical activity also helps the brain produce more endorphins. Meditate or listen to relaxing music.
  • These are also good tips for mental health care. Especially, it will help you minimize stress during the interview.
  • Try to speak positively to yourself. For example, “I am good enough,” “I can and will do this,” “I am capable enough for this job,” etc.
  • Imagine positive outcomes. For example, this interview will go well, you will definitely succeed and be called to work, etc.
  • Try to connect with the feeling you expect in a new way. You can turn your anxious energy into excitement.
  • Tell yourself “I am very excited for the interview” instead of “I am nervous and stressed”.

How to manage stress during an interview

The habit of regular meditation helps you to have a better ability to stay calm

Sure, I’d be happy to help! Here are some tips for managing your health and reducing stress during a job interview:

Pay attention to your health:

  • You should aim to go to bed early the night before the interview instead of trying to cram in more information.
  • Sleep is a crucial factor in helping you feel mentally and emotionally prepared. Getting enough sleep can help you feel more relaxed and comfortable.
  • If you have trouble sleeping, you can try some relaxation techniques such as massage, warm baths, aromatherapy, etc.
  • Certain foods are not only good for your health but can also be helpful for your emotions.
  • Additionally, they can help nourish your positive energy. You can eat light to help reduce stress during the interview.
  • Some good options include bananas, oats, almonds, or pomegranate juice to help control blood pressure and regulate heart rate.

Tips for reducing stress during the interview

It’s not easy to control stress and regain calmness and confidence during a job interview. Here are some tips that might help:

  • Take deep breaths and focus on your breath to calm your nerves.
  • Practice positive self-talk to boost your confidence.
  • Visualize yourself performing well during the interview.
  • Remember that it’s okay to feel nervous, and the interviewer understands this.
  • Be present in the moment and focus on the interviewer’s questions.
  • Use humor, if appropriate, to lighten the mood and show your personality.

– Acknowledge that you are feeling stressed:

There’s nothing worse than worrying and trying to pretend that you’re not having any issues. For many people, the biggest factor leading to stress and anxiety during an interview is the fear of doing something wrong. You can make yourself feel ashamed.

One of the tools to control and reduce stress during an interview is being honest with your feelings. If you stumble, fumble, or say something wrong, instead of pretending it didn’t happen, try to reframe it in a positive way.

You can choose the appropriate moment to share your nervousness with the recruiter. Don’t forget to have a bright smile on your face so they know that even though you’re stressed, you remain optimistic.

– Choose a suitable sitting position:

Your sitting position has a significant impact on your mental state during the interview. When you enter the room, you should smile and greet everyone before sitting down. Only bring your resume (if any) and place it gently on the table. Then, pull out the chair and sit down slowly.

Choose the right sitting posture during the interview

Choose the right sitting position during the interview to help you feel more comfortable and confident

During a job interview, it’s important to maintain a professional and confident demeanor. Here are some tips to help you do just that:

  • Sit up straight, slightly leaning forward, without slouching, shaking your thighs, or constantly fidgeting. This posture shows that you are stable and professional, which can help boost your confidence even when you are nervous. Additionally, it can leave a positive impression on the interviewer.
  • Respond slowly and clearly to questions. You may feel anxious and tense during the interview, which can cause you to speak quickly, unclearly, or with an unprofessional volume. Sometimes, your answer may become messy, long-winded, and contain many awkward pauses. No interviewer appreciates this. Therefore, you should regulate your breathing, control your voice, speak slowly and clearly, and pause for about 30 seconds to think about the main points before answering the interviewer’s questions.
  • If you can’t hear the questions clearly, ask the interviewer to repeat them. This will be viewed more favorably than trying to answer the question when you don’t understand it.
  • Maintain a positive attitude. Your confidence and positivity can be easily demonstrated through your facial expressions. Interviewers generally have a good impression of optimistic candidates. Therefore, you should smile lightly during the interview to show that you are mentally prepared and enthusiastic.
  • Communicate through eye contact. Constantly looking around or down during the interview can make the interviewer think that you are worried. It’s best to learn how to communicate through eye contact to show your interest and engagement.

make eye contact with the employer

Knowing how to make eye contact with the employer will help you be confident, not stooped or stiff

Look at your interviewer in the most natural way. You should show your own initiative. Instead of staring into the interviewer’s eyes, focus on the point between their eyes. Occasionally, you can look down for a few seconds to create a natural and comfortable feeling.

  • Relax your body:

Nervousness and tension can cause your body to stiffen, resulting in discomfort and lack of confidence. These issues also greatly affect your interview. So try to relax your body, breathe deeply, and avoid stiffening your body.

  • Stay calm in front of tough questions:

Currently, many recruiters ask difficult questions in interviews to accurately evaluate the true abilities of candidates. If faced with tough questions, you need to know how to control your fear and remain calm.

Don’t ignore or laugh if asked questions that you don’t want to answer. It’s best to share honestly. You can add a little embellishment to make your answer more logical and reasonable.

If asked about your previous company and the reason for leaving, you should not criticize the company or former colleagues harshly. Instead, share positive things and express your desire for change to renew yourself.

Other measures to help manage stress

In addition to being concerned about what to do before and during the interview to reduce stress, some other tips can also be helpful. For example:

How to reduce stress during an interview
  • Preparing for the question: You should bring a notebook and write down some questions you want to ask the employer. This will be helpful when you feel anxious and forget important questions you want to communicate. Additionally, you can take notes in the notebook while the employer is talking. This shows your interest in the information they are providing.
  • Repeat the question: Nerves can cause you to react quickly without thinking. Try to slow down and take deep breaths. Also, repeat the question in your head so that you have time to form your answer.
  • Take deep breaths: Always remember to engage in the conversation and focus on your breath. If you feel anxious during the interview, take deep breaths. Deep breaths provide a large amount of oxygen to the body and signal the brain to relax and remain calm. Additionally, it reduces symptoms of fast heart rate or high blood pressure.
  • Smile: Try to maintain a positive attitude when approaching the interview. If you are nervous or answer incorrectly, smile to regain composure. Also, let the employer see that you are always optimistic about any problem. This small tip also helps to effectively reduce stress during the interview.
  • Evaluate the job: You need to try to evaluate whether the job is really suitable for you or not. This helps to reduce some pressure. Furthermore, it allows you to ask questions to assess your interest in the job and the company.

The article has provided some tips to help reduce stress during an interview. It is hoped that these tips will help you regain your calm and confidence in answering any questions from the employer, resulting in the best interview results.

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