Interview Anxiety Management: Tips and Tricks 

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Anxiety is a crucial evolutionary feature of the human brain. Whenever there  is a danger or a high-stress situation, our bodies prepare by releasing hormones:  blood pressure rises, heart rate spikes, pupils dilate. This feature is a big  advantage if you are running from a tiger amidst the savanna desert. The problem  is that the body responds likewise to uncertainty and challenge, even in situations  where the cool head is vital for correct decisions and a good impression. 

Have you ever sat in the hall, waiting for the interview? Your hands are wet  and cold, shaking, it’s hard to think straight, and thoughts are rushing through  your head: what if I screw up? What if I don’t remember the answer? What if I  misspell the interviewer’s name? This experience is common, especially for  inexperienced candidates. Here we’ll list a few ways to help you manage the  interview anxiety. 

Sharpen Your Arguments 

It always helps to be prepared. Go through the material you may need: theoretical  aspects, the tools you use, etc. Make sure you know the matter thoroughly, if you  had difficulty answering some questions in the previous stage of the interview – learn the necessary information. Chances are, these same questions will be asked  again. Don’t limit yourself to the general understanding of the job. Look up both  the most common and more specific questions for your position and try to come  up with structured answers. Maybe even write the bullet points to memorize them. 

Most interviews start with general questions about you and your previous work  experience. People usually think: “I know my own experience. Why would I  prepare for this?” But giving a concise response may be difficult, especially when  you are anxious. Go through the CV you sent to this employer and sum up your  work experience in a few paragraphs. This is even more important for interviews  in a foreign language. 

Prepare Your Body 

Anxiety manifests itself as a physical reaction, and it is possible to reduce it  with physical preparation. Make sure you get a good sleep a few nights in a row,  as sleep deprivation increases an anxiety level. Remember that alcohol reduces  sleep quality, so using it to fall asleep faster is a bad idea. 

If you have other ways to reduce anxiety, such as rituals, gym, or running – by all  means, use them. It is also a bad idea to drink coffee right before the interview. If  you always drink it – have a cup in the morning, a few hours before the event, and  have a good breakfast with it. Don’t go to the interview being hungry, as blood  sugar spikes also contribute to anxiety. 

Gather Your Tools

Anxiety management is not limited to preparation. There are actions you can  take just before the interview to calm down and focus on the task. The easiest way  to do that is to breathe slower. Our body’s natural response is to lower heart rate  and decrease blood pressure. There are specific techniques and breathing patterns  people use to do this. Yet, there are no obvious reasons for them to work better  than simple slow breathing. 

Make sure you have options, even if they aren’t optimal. It is very stressful  to be in the only interview on which your career depends. Instead, find multiple vacancies for your position and send a CV there. Even the existence of these  options will release some of the mental pressure. 


Here we listed several ways to reduce anxiety levels before the interview.  Remember: a calm and focused mind is key to making a good impression and  acing an interview.

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