Just getting to a job interview means a recruiter or HR manager likes your skills, qualifications and levels of experience as described in your resume. However, actually meeting with you at a job interview means the potential employer wants to gauge your personality to see if you are the right fit for the position. Learn to stay calm before, during and after the interview to get the best possible results.
Even if you prepare thoroughly, you may still feel jittery, stressed and nervous just before you meet recruiters. Practice these five relaxation techniques before and during the interview to calm your nerves and win the day.
Sometimes you just need to take a breath. Before you answer a question, pause for a moment and take a deep breath. This slow inhale and exhale lasts just a few seconds, but it's effective and relaxing.
A deep breath does several things all at once. It focuses your body on one simple act. The breath lets you pause for five to 10 seconds while you think about your answer. This deep breath lets your interviewers know that you think about questions first before answering them, which is better than simply spouting off memorized text. Breathing helps your body to relax and keeps your voice on an even keel instead of raspy as you gasp for quick breaths.
Breathe deeply from your abdomen and not your chest. This technique also helps you gain more confidence as the interview progresses.
2. Positive Visualization
Visualize how you want your interviewers to see you. Before you step into a room full of strangers, create a visual representation of the perfect candidate for this position. Notice the person's tone of voice, mannerisms and nonverbal cues. Visualize yourself answering each interview question adeptly and without fear. The best athletes in the world utilize this technique, so put visualization to work for you, too.
3. Have a Conversation
An interview is not all about you answering questions. The people talking to you expect you to ask questions at some point. As you formulate an answer, think of a follow-up question to ask the interviewer. Asking questions keeps the HR manager and recruiter engaged and interested in you and your conversation.
4. Slow Down
If you find yourself stumbling over words, pause for a moment and slow down your pace. Feel free to say out loud that you need a moment to think of a response to an interesting question. This is where a deep breath may come into play as you formulate a response.
5. Redirect Stressful Questions
Not every question asked of you is easy to answer. Redirect a potentially negative question into a positive so you don't have to talk about a stressful topic. For instance, talk about how you learned better time management skills during a period when you had to rush through some important work. Turn a weakness into a strength using the same strategy.
Stress and anxiety do not have to rule during your job interview. Discover which relaxation techniques work best for you, and use them to guide your behavior as you land your dream job.
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