The pressure of an impending job interview can turn you to mush, even if you’re normally pretty cool-headed. Sweat, dizziness, and rambling are all fairly common effects of nerves, and none of them are going to help you ace the interview. Employers rely on the stress of the interview, in part, to see how you might respond during a stressful situation at work. Try the following techniques to calm your nerves before an interview:
– Rehearse. Going through the motions of the interview ahead of time can go a long way toward helping you to stay calm. Practice answering common questions, and you may find that you’re able to answer them better when they come up in an interview.
– Take deep breaths. Deep breathing can release tension before your interview. Breathe in deeply through your nose and exhale through your mouth to calm yourself.
– Ditch the caffeine. Coffee makes a great productivity tool. However, the caffeine buzz that helps you power through your e-mail can make you jittery during a job interview. Avoid consuming caffeine and find another way to stay alert instead.
– Relax your muscles. A technique called progressive muscle relaxation may help you before an interview. Tense every muscle in your body, then begin relaxing your muscles one by one. Start with your feet and work your way up from there. Shifting your attention away from your nerves and on to your muscles can help you relax.
– Visualize calming things. It can be tempting to spend the last few minutes before your interview trying to cram by reviewing job details. Instead, use that time to relax. Bring an image to mind that calms and centers you, like that of a loved one’s smile.
– Use cool water. If your body feels particularly out of control, you may be able to get a handle on it again by using cool water. Go to the restroom and put your wrists under a stream of cool water. You may also want to put a little behind your ears. Doing so will cool you down and may help you to relax.