You’ve got a job interview coming up. But you aren’t worried about the usual aspects like what to bring, what your employer will ask, etc. What you’re thinking about is how awkward it’s going to be. Your nervous demeanor has been the reason you were turned down for jobs before—even ones you were overqualified for. How can you avoid social gaffes and get through the interview so that you actually have a chance at getting the job? Let’s look at some tips to help minimize your awkwardness and land you a job.
1. Be Open About Your Awkwardness
There’s nothing worse than trying to hide how you really are. It never works—your nerves always find ways to show how you feel through body language or facial expressions. So if you’re nervous don’t hide it. That will just create more tension as people try and dance around obvious facts. Acknowledge your anxiety and move on. The interviewer will appreciate you just for being genuine and it might end up distinguishing you.
2. Focus On Your Skills
If you know your social skills are lacking, try and focus the interview on other skills you have. Highlight your strengths so that the interviewer knows you’re well rounded in other ways that make up for your social deficit. Tell them your good features like being hardworking, detail-oriented, or observant. Also mention any hobbies you have like painting or playing an instrument, as these show dedication and the ability to stick with and develop a skill.
3. Eat Before You Go
Being nervous takes away your appetite, but don’t let that tempt you into not eating before your interview. If you don’t eat, you’ll actually exacerbate your nervousness. Lack of food will cause headaches, shakiness, and lack of energy. You don’t need any extra problems cropping up during your interview, so make sure you eat something.
Uncertainty provides a breeding ground for anxiety, so adequate preparation should be used to cut that down some. Research common interview questions and rehearse your answers to them. Keep a few things in mind that you can say or ask during times of silence. Learn about the company you’re applying to work with, as this will show your interest and initiative. Preparation time is especially important come interview day. Be sure to give yourself enough time to prepare for the interview. Rushing will just make you feel frazzled and flustered.
Take deep breaths and remind yourself that this is a step you just have to go through in life. Try not to compound the problem and blow your anxiety up further by stressing over it. Everyone has issues at times, this is just one you have to deal with personally. Look forward to the relief of getting the job you need so you can get the life you desire.