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Overcoming Anxiety for an Interview

Updated: Feb 21, 2022

We have talked about setting goals, but even if you have the best goals you can still experience anxiety during any phase of accelerating your career.

The American Psychiatric Association states “anxiety is closely related to fear, which is a response to a real or perceived immediate threat.”

So what if someone tells you “no” for an interview or says “no” we do not think you are a good fit for the role.

That “no” is just one more step towards getting the “yes” you are looking for. While it is easy to say there is no real reason for us to be anxious the reality is there is no real threat for us to worry about.

We often put too much emphasis on immediate success in our culture today, which leads us to putting more pressure on ourselves to succeed. This ironically is actually detrimental to our success.

So, we are going to share a few best practices for overcoming anxiety before an interview.

Be Prepared

If you have prepared for the interview to the best of your ability most likely you will represent yourself in the best possible light.

To be fair, preparation for an interview can take hours of researching the company, rehearsing answers to questions about your experience, and preparing to ask good questions. However, that preparation will lead you to becoming confident as you talk to a potential employer.

Manage Your Heart Rate

It sounds silly to some people, but you will not perform at your best if you are in a stressed state with a high heart rate.

Try sprinting for a few miles and then try completing a complex mental task; it is much harder. The body is dedicating resources to keeping you alive, not thinking critically.

Again, the good part here is that an interview is not a life-or-death situation. Here a few tips on how to get prepared for an interview:

1. Have at least 15 minutes between your interview and your previous meeting.

2. Try to meditate before the interview. We like using Headspace as you can select the length of meditation.

3. Have a copy of your resume, the role description, and your questions printed on your desk as you conduct the interview in case your technology fails.

4. Limit external distractions and noises.

5. Remember you are prepared!

Keep Your Goals in Mind

Remember that this interview is just one step in your journey towards accomplishing your BIG goals.

You might have 20 interviews before you find the right role that fits your experience at a company that you want to work for.


The main thing to take away from this post is that if you are prepared and you did your absolute best and it didn’t work out then there is nothing to be ashamed of.

If you didn’t get the outcome you are looking for take a look at our section on “You Didn’t Get the Offer” and remember you are still taking proactive steps to achieving your goals even if you didn’t succeed this time.

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