INTERVIEWS / NOV. 12, 2014
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Top 10 Cheeky Ways to Handle Your Interview Nerves

Do you get sweaty palms just before sitting down for an interview? It is not an uncommon thing, and you can rest assured that there are many others like you who get the ‘interview jitters’. Remember, if you are not yourself during an interview, you will be sending out the wrong signals that could ruin the interview and cost you heavily. Here are a few tips to help you handle interviews with confidence.

#1 Just before an interview

One good way to relieve interview nerves is to watch an amusing job-related video just before attending an interview. There are several interview/job videos to help you relax, stay calm and composed. Often, you tend to forget things or act differently when you are not calm.  

#2 Speak slowly and clearly

Whenever we are nervous, our rate of speech increases automatically, and it is very difficult for the interviewer to follow what is being said. At such times, pause, take a deep breath, count up to 5 and exhale slowly. Do this a couple of times and you should calm down within a matter of seconds. When you have regained your confidence and composure, start speaking and you will notice a startling difference.

#3 Stop quivering uncontrollably

Interview jitters often leave us quivering uncontrollably, making it obvious that we are terribly nervous. The trick lies in tucking in your buttocks in a tight squeeze that will also make your thigh muscles taut. While focusing on keeping those muscles clenched, you’ll realize that the trembling in your hands stops almost by default. What is happening just under the table will go unnoticed, and you can continue with the interview confidently.

#4 Don’t sit while waiting

While in the interview chamber, you are likely to be offered a seat. The normal practice is to accept the seat and sit down right away. However, you will feel quite awkward if you have to get up in a hurry when the interviewer pops in. Alternatively, if you remain standing (not pacing around) you should be more than ready to face the interviewer.

#5 Sit comfortably

You posture can give clear signals about you. Hence, it is important not to slouch in your chair, nor should you sit ramrod straight, which would make you to appear to be uncomfortable. Avoid squirming in your seat, as that can send out wrong signals, implying that you are nervous. Sit erect, though comfortably, maybe leaning forward slightly.

#6 Keep your hands visible

Most interview candidates are nervous and tend to hide their hands below the table, often intertwining their hands due to nervousness. It is better to keep your hands visible, maybe rest them gently on the table. Keeping your hands visible sends out positive signals, and indicates that the person is honest and upfront, with nothing to hide.

#7 Make the interviewer feel important

Even if you are a well-informed person, it is not a great idea to be a show-off. Sometimes the interviewer may sound as though he or she is rambling endlessly. However, do not interrupt or try to appear disinterested. The best is to punctuate the conversation with brief questions or nods of agreement wherever appropriate. This will make you appear to be keen and passionate about the job, and engrossed attentiveness always scores additional points.

#8 Attentiveness

Being attentive is a great quality any person will look out for in a prospective employee. Keeping your ears open and listening to every word that is being uttered will ensure that nothing is ever missed. This prevents you from bungling by giving the wrong answer or reacting inappropriately. It also indicates that you respect the person you are interacting with, and value what he or she is saying.

#9 Sound original

It doesn’t make sense to sound impressive by trying to speak in a very formal tone, without the all-important personal touch. It is better to sound the way you always do, as that is what comes out as something natural. Speak up if you feel you are inaudible; however, avoid speaking very loudly, lest you sound as though you are shouting. Use a friendly tone and appear normal, and that should do the trick.

#10 Be what you are

It is important to project your true self at all times. It is not a good idea to try to impress anyone by using complex words just to prove you have a great vocabulary. Talking about your achievements is fine, as long as you do not sound too pompous. Convey a sense of being relaxed, composed, and appear to be good to go for the job.

The important thing is to enjoy the interview and show no visible signs of nervousness or panic. You are already halfway through, because that is why you have been called for an interview. Getting through the rest of the process in a composed manner and with all the confidence you can muster, will certainly help you land the job.



Image Credit: Workingsports

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