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What is Interview Nerves & How to Calm It? 


It is normal to feel nervous during important events, such as approaching your first job interview, having your first date, or coming to a new environment. In fact, Healthline experts said that nervousness is a common feeling for humans as a stress response. It acts as a guard, preparing the human’s body to handle a perceived or imagined threat by boosting adrenaline production. So when feeling nervous, you will feel your heart beat faster, blood pressure rises, breathing quickens, and your alertness and energy increase. 

When it comes to getting on your first job interview, nervousness arises because you know that the interviewer will mostly be in control of the conversation. You are also aware that the interview will determine whether you will be accepted in your dream company or not. These thoughts could lead to stress, thus boosting your adrenaline that results in anxiety and nervousness. 

But you don’t have to worry when the nerves hit you. Healthline experts said that the feeling of nervousness is a temporal response to certain events and it will resolve once the stress has passed. Good news is, interview nerves can be controlled, even for someone who is more prone to feeling nervous. Some ways to calm your interview nerves are as follows: 

1. Embrace your nervousness 

The first step to overcoming nervousness is to acknowledge that you are feeling it. Just because you feel nervous does not make you less qualified for the job. On the contrary, when you allow this feeling to control you, you are likely to feel worse effects such as being anxious and sweaty. That is why acknowledging the feeling is the fastest way to lessen nervousness. 

2. Preparation is essential 

You might have no idea what interviewers will ask during a job interview, therefore it is essential to come prepared. There are at least three things you need to prepare when you go for an interview; (1) mind your attire, so you will look clean and crisp as a professional should; (2) the interview site map, so you will know how to get there on time and; and (3) interview question cheat sheet. There are plenty of common interview questions and tips to answer them. Remember, the more prepared you are for the interview, the less anxious you will feel.     

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3. Engage in relaxation activities 

Relaxing feelings can be achieved by a simple method like deep breathing. Practice in front of a mirror. Shake off the jitters by refreshing yourself with a cool drink. These are just some of the examples of relaxation activities you can do to settle your nerves right before an interview.  

4. Think of small accomplishments 

You can have a mental list of your achievements in the past or jot them down before the interview. Dwelling on your strengths and accomplishments is a good way to boost confidence. However, keep a good balance of this assertiveness so as not to mislead your interviewer. You should not overclaim to impress - keep it realistic and truthful; that is, do not overpromise.   

5. Get some ideas on the interview process 

To feel less nervous, you can ask around and find out how the company conducts their hiring process. Generally, people will feel more secure when they know what they are dealing with. Asking some staff on the corridor or other candidates during the wait will not only give you ideas of how the interview will be, but you will also get a new circle and friends. Or, you can ‘interview’ the interviewer too. Doing this will help you decide if you can really work well with the company.   

Now that you have ideas on how to control and shoo away your interview nerves, the next step is to not take the interview too seriously but also not too lightly. Instead, do the best you can to make the session ‘fun’. If you compel yourself to have fun during a job interview, you will feel more relaxed and will start to breathe calmly. The last thing to remember is to be acceptable and professional. By accepting whatever the outcome of the interview is enough to make you feel comfortable. Even if you do not get the job, you know that the experience is another lesson worth learning. 

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