Interview nerves

Our tips for controlling interview nerves and staying calm

How to control interview nerves? Being nervous and all the unpleasant feelings that go with it is one one of the issues we get asked about most.

Interview nerves and anxiety are very common. They are useful in giving us a shot of adrenaline which in turn makes us rise to the challenge. But ironically being too nervous can ruin our chances of doing ourselves justice. We worry about failure and by allowing ourselves to worry too much we increase the chance of that happening. We get into a vicious cycle.

Why do we get interview nerves and what can we do about them?

By following the advice on this site you will learn how to anticipate what questions you will be asked and prepare thoroughly. This in itself should reduce your anxiety. But sometimes nerves take over and anxious feelings get out of control. We lose sleep, we feel panicky, we start to get things out of perspective. It feels very unpleasant and we know we should 'get a grip' as its 'only an interview'. But the strange thing is, the more we worry the worse it gets.There is plenty of help at hand. You will be able to go for your interview full of confidence and ready for the challenge.

On this page we can show you how to :-

  • Control your fear
  • Change the way you think
  • Calm yourself down

Handling fear

Fear is an emotion. Emotions are driven by our thoughts. If you believe an interview is going to be frightening, you will be scared. If you worry about not getting the job, you will become anxious. If you think you will get your answers muddled up-you will feel tongue tied and nervous.

It is your thoughts that create your anxiety. Your thoughts drive the chemical reactions that drive our emotions. But believe it or not our thoughts can create different feelings if we choose to change them.

For example you could be so excited about the prospect of a new job that you look forward to the interview! That would in itself make you feel excited, challenged and full of anticipation at getting the chance to pitch for the job.

Change the way you think

Instead of thinking 'I am scared', 'I am terrified', 'I might not get this job’ ‘I am nervous’ think differently.

Try this experiment. Think ‘I am useless at interviews’. Notice how you feel, notice your breathing, notice how your mind races away with the worry’. Now change your thought to ‘I know I can do this job’.

Say it a couple more times each time a little louder than before. Now notice that your body feels a little stronger. Your body chemistry starts to change and you will soon start to feel more positive emotions that are not as scary. And in fact will help you rise to the challenge.

Strangely enough you do not have to believe in your more positive thoughts, you only have to think them and your brain will do the rest.

Calm yourself

Here are our tips. Try and work out which ones work for you and make sure you build them into your interview preparation.

  • Get oxygen to your brain –deep breaths, meditation, a walk in the fresh air can all help calm you down and help you think more clearly.
  • Find a calming ritual that suits you – a cup of tea, a piece of favourite music, reading a magazine, even a bar of chocolate if that helps!
  • If your interview nerves generally you could try a session or two of Hypnotherapy.
  • Also take a look at our recommended
  • Hypnosis Downloads

  • If you need a general confidence boost we recommend the book 'Instant Confidence' by Paul McKenna
  • Relaxation CDs
  • If you contact me I can recommend a Life Coach who will be able to help with interview stress and anxiety
  • Finally have you tried Bach Rescue Remedy?
    Rescue Remedy is the most famous of the Bach Flower Remedy collection. Just a few drops on your tongue or in a glass of ware will take the edge off your interview nerves so that you can concentrate on your best first impression and the interview itself. The effects are subtle and don’t expect to notice huge changes. But after the event you will look back ands feel surprised at how calm you handled things. It works on animals as well as humans so there is more to it than a mere placebo effect. Inexpensive and worth carrying with you to give you a pre interview boost.

Here are more Emergency Measures

  • Keep things in proportion. The interviewer knows you will be nervous. Drying up is not the end of the world.
  • Worrying is not going to help or change the situation for the better. It usually makes things worse and makes you feel terrible

  • Stop thinking about being nervous and think about how good it will be to get the job
  • Sipping a glass of water can calm you down and give you valuable thinking time
  • You can pause for breath and give yourself thinking time. It is OK to say ‘can I have few seconds to think this one through?’
  • You can always say –‘I am sorry I am so nervous, but this job is so important to me’ It sounds positive and should get the interviewer on your side
  • Not getting the job is temporary set back not a failure. It was not meant to be. When the time is right a new opportunity will come along. The door will open, and you will walk though

We hope that this information will help you with your interview nerves. But remember you can Email us and we will answer your specific question. or book some Interview Coaching. if you need extra support.

To go from Interview Nerves to Interview Questions Answered