How to Ace Your Video Interview
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Calm your interview nerves.
Chapter 1: What Is Interview Anxiety?
Chapter 2: Is It Normal to Experience Nervousness?
Chapter 3: Coping Strategies for Interview Nerves
Chapter 4: Prioritizing Self-Care
Chapter 5: The Power of Positive Thinking
Chapter 6: No Substitute for Preparation
Chapter 7: Other Popular Ways to Destress
Chapter 8: Dealing with Post-Interview Nerves
Chapter 9: Channeling Your Stress for Good
Tension in the neck and shoulders
Let us reassure you that interview nerves are 100% normal. Nearly everyone experiences them.
There are lots of reasons why people get pre-interview nerves. The most common reason is because you really want to ace the interview. You’re generally nervous because you don’t want to mess up, and that’s totally understandable!
Interview anxiety originates from the pressure to perform well. The more you genuinely want to succeed, the more nervousness you may feel. Unsurprisingly, these feelings are tied to performance anxiety and the knowledge that you’re being evaluated by others. Whenever we face the possibility of rejection, anxiety can soar.
Another common scenario when anxiety may pop up is when you’re interviewing for a new job while you’re still employed. You may be fearful that your current employer will find out, or nervous about having to ask for time off work to accommodate the interview. One solution to this concern is to ask the recruiter if there’s an option for a pre-recorded video interview. This allows you the flexibility to record answers to interview questions whenever and wherever you feel most comfortable—without arousing suspicion from your employer. This simple scheduling convenience can help reduce your anxiety.
While interview nerves typically hit applicants the hardest, even interviewers may experience this phenomenon. Depending on hiring expectations, deadlines, and other professional (and personal) circumstances, recruiters and hiring managers can feel nervous, too. This is especially true for those early in their career, but even seasoned professionals who’ve been interviewing most of their lives sometimes get nervous.
Take comfort in knowing we’re all human beings who experience a wide-range of perfectly normal feelings.
Since everyone experiences anxiety slightly differently, certain strategies tend to be more effective in calming interview nerves than others. What works best will depend on your unique personality and situation.
Some people are naturally more resilient to stress, or they’ve already developed effective coping mechanisms to keep their worries at bay. Other people (especially those who are new to interviewing) will need to devote more conscientious time to adequately destress before their interview.
Prioritizing proper sleep, exercise, and nutrition
Practicing positive thinking
Proactively reducing potential stressors
Preparing for the interview well in advance
Researching popular interview questions
Rehearsing your answers and prepping anecdotes
Working with a career coach
Listening to music
We encourage you to experiment with different stress-busting techniques to find a combination of strategies that helps you feel most at ease.
Most adults need seven to nine hours of sleep to function their best.
*Consult with your doctor if you have concerns before beginning any exercise program.
33% of adults overeat or eat
unhealthy foods because it helps
distract them from stress.
30% of adults report skipping a
meal due to stress (either no
appetite or no time).
Try meditation or a relaxation app like Headspace to cultivate mindfulness and self-compassion.
Use the STOP technique to gain perspective and defuse anxiousness. This simple and quick mental trick can help you manage stress in real-time, so feel free to use this strategy before, during, and after your interview.
Make a gratitude list and/or give yourself a pep talk. There are likely many positive things happening in your life (including an interview invitation!). Take a second to pump yourself up instead of psyching yourself out.
Practice visualization. Imagine you’ve already earned the interviewer’s attention and trust. They’re keen to hear what you have to say. Better yet, imagine you already have the job! Close your eyes and think about what you’d do on your first day of work. Make note of how the visualization made you feel, as well as any questions that pop to mind.
A copy of your resume/CV
Pen and paper (a small notebook is best; don’t bring loose sheets of paper that can easily be misplaced or fall out of order)
A copy of the job description
Depending on the position, your portfolio or writing samples
Name and contact information for one-three references
If you’ve been invited to a digital interview, don’t fret! You can learn absolutely everything you need to prepare yourself for success with these video interview tips. This one-stop ultimate guide provides a free tech check and expert advice to ace your virtual interview. We encourage you to read it to increase your preparedness.
In this article, we’ve discussed many different tactics people often use to calm their nerves. Here are more strategies for those experiencing interview anxiety:
Reduce the magnitude of the event in your mind. While your interview is of course important, sometimes it’s helpful to temporarily depreciate that importance a little. Think of the interview as just an exciting chance to network and meet new people. This easy-going approach to interviewing can help you relax enough to perform well.
Listen to music. It reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol. The type of music you choose will depend on personal taste and your mood. Some people like to listen to calming music or soothing soundscapes before an interview, while others opt for high-energy music. A global survey found that when people listened to their favorite song, 75% felt lower stress.
Practice aloud. To ease interview nerves, 70% practice their interview responses out loud, and 62% prepare anecdotes ahead of time.
Try a power pose. A power pose is a stance where you keep your head held high and your chest lifted with your arms either outstretched or firmly on your hips—like a superhero might stand! Amazingly, power poses can provide a 25% decrease in cortisol levels while helping you appear confident and ready for the job.
Breathe! When you’re anxious, your breathing tends to be short and shallow. Try breathing in for a count of four, hold for two, and breathe out for another count of four.
Journal. The process of writing down your thoughts can help get your worries out of your head.
Take a shower or bath. As the water runs off you, imagine that your worries are being washed away, too.
Consult with a career coach. Some people find working one-on-one with a professional to be helpful in addressing specific questions and unique challenges.
Medication. In certain cases, anti-anxiety medication may be prescribed to help patients manage their overall mental health. To explore this option, talk with your doctor.
Now let’s talk about the feelings you may have after your interview.
You’ve got this!