Job Interviewing Tips: Dealing with Nerves and Anxiety

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I’ve written a great deal on preparing for sports job interviews, but I’ve never discussed how to handle the anxiety or nerves leading up to an interview. This short video will provide three tips that anyone can use to help calm their nerves before their next sports job interview!


Video Transcript for “Job Interviewing Tips: Dealing with Nerves and Anxiety”

Brian Clapp, WorkinSports.com Director of Content:

I’ve written a bunch of articles on the work in sports blog about interviewing for sports jobs, little tips, little tricks, things to expect. But today we’re going to encompass something a little broader – job interviewing tips based around how you feel leading up to sports job interview, and how to get your emotions and anxieties in check to show your true best self.

Let’s say you are an introvert and you have a sports job interview coming up in another day or so, you are probably as nervous as can be. The whole process is sending shivers down your spine, you can’t sleep at night, you’ve got all these anxious feelings. Let’s be honest, even if you are not an introvert you may be feeling a lot of these same anxiety symptoms. We’re going to talk about a few tips and tricks you can do to help calm yourself down and make yourself ready to show your true and best self during a sports job interview.

Job Interviewing Tip #1

A lot of introverts or nervous people try to script things out. They memorize responses to questions they think may be asked. This is actually a bad mistake.

If you try to script out your answers, you never sound natural or confident in what you are saying, plus if you have any stutter, or get a little out of your mental script – then it all falls apart, the anxiety crashes in and everything snowballs. You never get to show who you truly are.

The game plan you should go in with, is maybe you write some things down because it helps trigger memories in your mind and keep it sharp, but don’t memorize. You need to know information from your heart and your soul, trust in your education, your experience and let that come through. If you go scripted it’s not going to work well.

Job Interviewing Tip #2

Load up your schedule with other things in advance of your interview. It sounds kind of contradictory, but lets say you have a sports job interview tomorrow, schedule yourself for as much stuff to do as you can possibly jam in today and even the morning before your sports job interview. Book your schedule.

The reason is, the more downtime you have the more chance you have to build anxiety in yourself and the more stressed out you become. Then you are not going to do a great job.

What you need to do is keep your mind busy, and have a lot of other things scheduled so you go into your reactive mode, where you are just going through your daily motions, not taking a lot of downtime to stress about your up coming sports job interview. Then, when the job interview comes, you can be a little more mellow and prepared because you haven’t built up an inordinate amount of tension.

Job Interviewing Tip #3

I’ll be honest, I’m an extrovert, this sort of thing is very natural to me, interviewing is natural to me and it’s sort of my comfort zone. I reached out to a friend who is an executive who presents all the time to large crowds and I know she battles anxiety prior to each speech. I asked her, “what do you do to prepare to calm your nerves?”

She had two tips.

First thing she does is eat a banana before she goes into any big event. And the other thing she does is she drinks a glass or warm water. OK, now we’ll talk about why this works for her, but the key idea is, don’t get locked in on a banana and warm water – you need to figure out exactly what works for you.

She eats a banana because it helps settle her stomach, and one of her big issues on stage is she starts to feel nauseous. She eats a banana and it helps settle her stomach, even if it’s just a placebo affect, it helps.

The second fear she has is that she’s going to lose her voice. So when she drinks a glass of warm water it helps prep her vocal cords and get her voice ready, Now when she gets those two hurdles out of the way she feels like her most confident self.

You need to get to the root of your anxiety like my example has, and then figure out a solution to help you get past it.

These are just a few tips to help you in the sports job interview process – because hey, we all want to show our true and best self in the job interviewing process. Hopefully this will help!

About Brian Clapp

Brian Clapp has worked in the sports media for over 14 years as a writer, editor, producer & news director. After beginning his career in Atlanta at CNN/Sports Illustrated, he switched coasts to Seattle to work at Fox Sports Northwest. In 2010, Brian began pursuing a new found passion on the digital media side, launching a successful website and then taking on the role of Director of Content for WorkinSports.com & WorkinEntertainment.com.

Recently, Brian has become addicted to Google+ and LinkedIn so add him to your circles and make him a contact. No seriously, do it.

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