At the best of times, a job interview is one of the more stressful events of our life. People will tell us to be confident, positive and all that, but interviews cause our minds to spiral a bit. This becomes more severe when we go into an interview unprepared.
This is how we then tend to think about the job interview:
- Heightened emotional state on interview day
Experts say it is natural for us to feel nervous on an important day in our life. They say, it helps to accept the nerves as normal, and then go ahead and deal with the interview. The nerves are not dangerous- in small doses, adrenaline makes us do leaps. 'Accept it and you will feel free.'
- 'All-or-nothing' thinking
This is not the end of life. In fact, this interview is not your life. This is a little halt in your working life, when you get off and meet people, and then you are off your way. Get some context. The interview is your chance to meet some professional people, learn some stuff, and move on. There is work for everyone in this world.
- Negative thinking after the interview
Don't take the rejection, or the hard questions, or the in-your-face interviewers personally. Everyone is playing one's part. Even if they all look like tough guys straight out of a western, say to yourself, 'they are playing their part well enough' and focus on giving the answers the best you can.
How to identify your thinking errors during any job interview: Use the ABC model
Before you go for that job interview, on a piece of white paper, structure your thinking thus:
List all things of about the planned interview, which is bugging you- maybe it is the preparation, maybe it is your lack of relevant skills/experience, whatever it is, write them down. Now you know what you have to answer.
Now that you know about the three thinking patterns related to job interviews, list all negative thoughts and then take them down one by one on basis of their evidence, realism and usefulness.
List the ways you feel when you engage in unhelpful thinking (the big three, see above)- anxiety, sweating, lack of focus, procrastination ('let's skip this one, will go to another interview') etc. When put all this on paper, a catharsis happens, freeing you to look forward to the job interview.
Thank you for reading.
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