You finally get the call. An interview! You’ve been waiting, and waiting, to hear back on a job lead you’ve been chasing for months. Your bank account is about to hit bottom and here’s an opportunity to get your career back on track.
Suddenly, your heart’s pounding. Palms are sweating. Hands trembling . And your voice is somewhere up in nose bleed octaves. What’s happening? Is it excitement or a crisis of confidence? (Perhaps a bit of both?)
You are successful the moment you start moving toward a worthwhile goal. ~ Chuck Carlson
Here’s the good news. You’re not at the interview. You’re still at home! It’s not too late to pull yourself together and combat any interview jitters.
Build Your Self Confidence
Preparation is the key. But what kind of preparation is best for jitters? Talking to your interviewer, aka yourself, in front of the mirror.
CareerBuilder recently conducted a survey of more than 2,500 hiring managers. Did you know that 67% cite failure to make eye contact would make them less likely to hire a candidate? Add to that a few other non-verbal actions that may squelch your chances of an offer:
- Lack of smile – 38 percent
- Fidgeting too much – 33 percent
- Bad posture – 33 percent
- Bad posture – 26 percent
- Crossing arms over chest – 21 percent
- Playing with their hair or touching their face 21 percent
- Using hand gestures – 9 percent
What are these cues conveying? Nerves and, ultimately, lack of confidence. That’s where the mirror come in.
Put on your interview outfit and do the following in front of a full length mirror:
- Look yourself in the eyes. Feel yourself engage. Hold your own gaze for 20 seconds.
- Smile and relax! Doesn’t it feel good to be open and friendly?
- Speak your answers to common interview questions out loud to find your voice. Keep talking until it’s loud and strong.
- Square up your posture and feel what it’s like to stand tall. Then sit down and sit tall.
- Notice your arms. Where are they? Where is a better place for them? Do it!
- Practice your handshake with a spouse or friend. Make eye contact and smile!
As you go through these physical motions, you will feel your sense of calm restored. A sense of power and control will be regained, along with your confidence! The best part is the more you do this exercise, the more these things will come naturally to you during the actual interview. The more confidence you will convey.
You’ve been called for an interview. That’s great news! They want to see you and speak with you. Now you’re ready!