Nervousness in the job interview has probably already been experienced by everyone. Fear is like an alarm bell that shakes us up and wakes us up. But if you act like a single bundle of nerves, you don’t look good. Applicants should not completely choke off their nervousness during the interview, but they should have it under control. It’s not that difficult …
When we are nervous, restless, excited, our body pours out adrenaline in large quantities, the heart beats faster, the pupils dilate. Nervousness is nothing negative. On the contrary, it is a protective mechanism in our body. Those who are nervous are more receptive, more vigilant and mobilize reserves. That helped in ancient times when you had to run away from the bear or defend yourself against rivals. Nervousness is a gift of evolution. It’s no different before an interview. Those who are nervous are vigilant. This helps! However, nervousness in the interview can also prevent us from being successful. Trying to chat away the nervousness and talk about it all – that has happened more than once. Also, put yourself in the shoes of the HR manager. If you are already extremely nervous during the interview How nervous will you be in stressful situations while you are at work? In some jobs, it is essential to remain calm – for example when you have direct customer contact. Excessive nervousness is not a seal of quality. So to a certain extent, nervousness is okay. Then it inspires. But if it increases extremely, then we no longer feel awake and alert, but as if paralyzed. Fear rises in us, sometimes even panic before the next question. This can quickly become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Anyone who is hyper-nervous imagines worst-case scenarios, which logically come true. The job is gone. If you’re not careful, you can quickly find yourself in a vicious circle. Anyone who messed up the job interview because of being too nervous will probably go into the next one even more excited – the chances of success drop and drop. How do you prevent that? We’ll tell you …
Perhaps this insight will help you: Nervousness is completely normal. It is all too human to be suspected in front of one important course in life. But still, you should pause for a moment and reflect: Why are you so terribly excited? Has a history of your nervousness? How can you alleviate it? There may be very specific reasons behind your nervousness. If you do know, you can work on appearing calmer and clearer in the next job interview. Most of the applications are due to the following reasons for their nervousness:
Again: Nervousness is not bad. It even helps. Those who are mega-cool and are not a bit nervous recognize warning signals later – and do not pay attention. A little nervousness in the interview is a good basis. But it should not get out of hand. With these tips, you can chase away your inner unrest …
These are signs of nervousness in the job interview
This is how nervousness manifests itself in the job interview. Therefore: Even if you are nervous – avoid these behaviors:
- Tugging on clothes
- Do not make or maintain eye contact
- Not or only Tormented smile
- Fidgeting on the chair
- Shaking hands briefly and limply
- Crossing your arms
- Fiddling with your face
- Talk in a shaky voice
Preparation is the best medicine for nerve bundles. Rehearse your appearance in front of the mirror. Practice your self-presentation. Also, train gestures and facial expressions. To a certain extent, of course, you don’t want to look like a robot or an actor. You should keep a pinch of authenticity. But the better prepared you are, the better prepared and the less nervous you are. Role-plays are also well suited. In this way you can run through a job interview yourself with friends or family and gain confidence.
Think about if-then scenarios
To a good one Preparation includes thinking about if-then scenarios. If the HR manager asks me about my gaps in my CV, then I answer what? If he asks me a nasty stressful question, how do I react? You can also imagine a few negative scenarios for the job interview. If you know exactly how you will react in the worst-case beforehand, then nothing can throw you off course so quickly.
Seeing positive things
Don’t see nervousness as your enemy, but as a friend. A friend who will warn you and encourage you. You benefit from increased attention. So don’t try to chase away the nervousness completely – just a little. This realization sometimes works wonders. Sometimes you can also counteract your inner fear by remembering past successes. Psychologists call this method cognitive restructuring. On this basis, you can convincingly assure yourself: I’ll do it! Or: Keep calm, it’ll be fine. Or: Let’s go, you are very well prepared. Now get the job!
This formula makes sense: beautiful clothing increases self-confidence and greater self-confidence drives away nervousness. Try it yourself! For the interview, choose an outfit that you feel comfortable in and that also makes an objective impression. Before doing this, check carefully whether everything is in place and the job interview can come.
Being on time
Another pressure generator is the deadline. You can’t use that at all. This only causes more stress and nervousness. A well-planned journey, on the other hand, takes the pressure off the boiler. Take a close look at the route to the company beforehand and plan it. On the day of the job interview, you leave late and plan a generous buffer. Because train failures or unforeseen accidents or construction sites areas you know – not uncommon. If you are there 15 minutes (or even earlier) before the interview, you’ve done everything right.
Refrain from coffee
A good day starts with a strong coffee – for many, this is almost a way of life. Nice, but before the interview, it is better to avoid the caffeine hammer – if you tend to be nervous. Because the caffeine turns you on and makes you even more nervous. This applies even more to energy drinks. Better to drink a glass of water or juice. And besides, coffee is known to drive. A restless bubble doesn’t exactly make you calmer either …
Of course, self-confidence cannot be thrown in like a pill. Or is it? In any case, you should be aware that you have already cleared the first major hurdle. You have been invited to an interview because you have something on your mind. Focus on your strengths, competencies, successes. By the way: everyone has some! Those who have gained confidence are less nervous. Take a look at your best awards, work, school grades or job references at home or look at your top projects before you go to the interview.
If you are nervous, your muscles are tense and want to let off steam. Therefore, it makes sense to exercise. Take a short walk before the interview. Take the stairs. A bit of gymnastics or stretching is also recommended. The movement has a relaxing effect. The best thing to do is take a lap in the fresh air – for example in the park. This will clear your mind. On the flip side, you shouldn’t be completely out of breath by reaching the company. That makes you even more nervous – and makes you sweat in the truest sense of the word.
Practice body language
Even if you are hyper-nervous, the hiring manager doesn’t necessarily have to notice. It is important that you do not radiate nervousness. Correct body language will help you make a good impression – and increase your chances of getting the job. What not to do: chew your fingernails, nibble with your hands, play with your hair, or pluck your beard. That makes you look insecure, not like a solid rock. You could therefore practice or even record an interview with a friend. The view from the outside reveals many small or large weaknesses. You can still work on them in good time. This also helps you to get a grip on your nervousness yourself. Because the more restless you wiggle back and forth in your chair or tap your feet, the more nervous you get.
Smile a lot
Also if you’ve long since lost your laugh: do it anyway! Smiling relaxes the mood – that of the other person and your own. It automatically sweetens the atmosphere in the room and helps keep the nervousness in check at bay. When you smile, your body releases happiness hormones. You will immediately feel better and be less tense. It doesn’t matter whether you’re grinning with joy or just pretending to be.
One dry throat is sometimes associated with nervousness. We produce less saliva when we’re excited. A lolly helps. It drives the uncomfortable feeling of dryness out of the mouth. Alternatively, you can also use chewing gum. But don’t forget to dispose of it in good time before the job interview.
Breathe is not the same as breathing. Only breathing through your mouth can make your mouth dry and your voice squeaky. Breathing consciously reduces tension. Before the job interview, take time to do a few breathing exercises. For example for the 4-6-8 method: Sit or stand upright. Breathe deeply and slowly through your nose and count to four. Then hold your breath and count to six. Now exhale through your mouth and count to eight. Repeat the whole thing at least five times – and your nervousness will be blown away. Another method is to consciously perceive your own breath and let it flow: Breathe out into your stomach so that it arches. Count backwards aloud or in your mind.
The anchor method is based on the stimulus reaction coupling. It helps you relax in stressful situations. You press your thumb and forefinger together and meanwhile think of a nice experience, like your last vacation. The positive memories will pass at the pressure of your fingers. If you repeat the exercise often enough, the nice feeling will set in at some point when you press your fingers together. In order for the method to work, however, you have to practice it early on. Afterwards you can regulate your nervousness like at the push of a button.
Take an object with you
There are play children who constantly need something to be with can play around. If you are very nervous about the interview, this is not a bad idea at all. Bring a small object that you can work on, knead, balance, or press. That can be reassuring. In the conversation itself, however, the item belongs in your pocket – and your hands on your lap or the table.
There is no shame in being nervous. Nervousness can also mean that you care a lot. This is actually a good sign for the HR manager. In addition, nervous applicants for HR are as normal as championship titles for Bayern Munich. It is therefore safe to admit that you are a little nervous. I have a frog in my throat right now. I have to admit, I’m a little nervous. This is not my first interview today, but I’m still nervous. Small talk with which you can gain some time and collect yourself. Or you can point out that if you get tangled or stutter, you are terribly nervous. That makes you human, vulnerable, personable. This often loosens up the situation – with positive consequences for your nerves.
This trick is guaranteed to help against blackouts! Wiggle your toes. No kidding: our brains have to direct energy from the very top to the very bottom when you wobble with the great uncle. This relaxes the cramps on the spot, loosens the cramps in the muscles and loosens them. You can also practice the trick quietly and quietly under the table. Try it for yourself – also in a meeting, at a presentation or an exam.
We have in the box with the inscription insider tip grabbed – and pulled out the dishwashing trick. Washing dishes reduces stress, said the University of Florida in a 2015 study. According to this, there is something meditative about the process. Of course, only if you wash plates and cups by hand and don’t just put them in the dishwasher. And only then, if you get involved in the procedure, pay attention to the temperature of the water and not hectically scrub everything. Now, of course, you can’t walk into the company’s coffee kitchen to do a quick wash before the job interview. But you could do it at home beforehand to keep your anxiety and fear in check.
Offer up a reward
Reward yourself for having accepted the challenge and for having carried out the interview despite being very nervous. Regardless of how it went and whether your chances of being awarded the contract have increased or disappeared as you see fit. Treat yourself to a milkshake, an evening at the cinema or a cool blonde – whatever. If you turn it into a habit, you will soon develop positive associations with job interviews – and look forward to the next one.