Job Interview Tips – How To Stay Calm

I recently received the following email…

I’m hoping to get some good advice on interviewing. Here’s some background…

After being let go from my job, I decided I wanted to get really good at interviewing. I think that’s really where you get the job. So I’ve been reading up on it and practicing answering interview questions (as you suggest in your great book) for 30 minutes per day.

I’ve never been comfortable around people I don’t know, so I really understand the whole “mental game” thing and how important it is in interviewing. I know it’s important to make the interviewer feel comfortable with me and so on.

But one problem I’m having is that if an interviewer is someone I don’t really feel comfortable with, I have an even harder time finding a way to remain calm and project being comfortable.

I’ve heard some people use self hypnosis or affirmations to help them stay calm but I’m not sure how that would work for me. Do you have any suggestions?


Here was my response…


Thanks for your email and your question.

Yes the mental game is very important when interviewing, and so is the emotional game!

Of course what you are describing is very common. We just don’t feel comfortable around certain people, for whatever reason.

Here’s one exercise that has helped me in the past. I used to get very uncomfortable around certain executives and often reduced myself to a bumbling idiot in front of them. Here are a couple of methods that worked well for me.

Try this simple self programming script (like self hypnosis) to help reduce or eliminate the feeling of being uncomfortable around certain people…Breath slowly and deeply throughout this exercise…

Everyday for several days before your interview (before going to sleep at night) imagine being in your interview. Imagine that the person interviewing you is someone you would normally feel awkward around. In your mind remember a situation where you’ve felt awkward around someone. Once you start feeling that awkward feeling, in your gut, imagine them shrinking down in size, shrinking down to a little baby. Imagine this little baby is scared and trying to act grown up. At the same time imagine you are becoming incredibly strong, confident, powerful, and extremely in control. Imagine that you make the interviewer feel comfortable. Hear your confident voice as you speak, start to feel the feelings of being strong and confident, see yourself standing so confidently and comfortably. Keep breathing slowly and deeply and feel the stress and that yuk feeling just melting away, melting totally away. Feel yourself being more and more comfortable in the situation with the interviewer, and imagine them being totally comfortable with you. Imagine it until you actually start to feel like you are in control of the situation. Imagine that the little baby interviewer really likes you and feels like you are the best thing that ever walked into his or her office! They are excited to meet you and you are so cool, confident, comfortable and in control! Then watch as the baby interviewer grows back into the adult but keeps the essence of being a baby, like a giant baby in an adult body. Notice how you feel so comfortable and in control around this interviewer! Feel Super Comfortable. Then simply tell your subconscious mind, “From now on I feel wonderfully comfortable in every interview situation”. Then go to sleep. 3 to 7 times usually does the trick.

You can also use the affirmation statement, “From now on I feel wonderfully comfortable in every interview situation”, throughout your day. Just repeat it over and over whenever you are alone.

Give it an honest try and see what happens. If it doesn’t work let me know and I can offer a few other techniques that may help!

To your success!

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