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Tried and tested techniques to overcome interview nerves

Once you have graduated from teaching college, you will be undoubtedly keen to secure your first position but landing the right job can be tough.


With lots of competition even getting an interview can be challenging so if the hiring school asks you to come in, it’s hardly surprising if you are filled with nerves.


Whether you are going for a teaching position or any other kind of job, nerves can decimate your performance at interview. However, there are a few easy techniques you can learn which will drastically reduce your butterflies on the big day.

 Interview nerves can be quite literally paralysing

Select your impression

Many people think that the first impression they give relies entirely on whether they manage to conquer their fears and project who they really are.


However, by trying a few psychological techniques in advance you can work out what image you want to project and practice getting into the right mind-set,


For example, if you think it would be useful to be attentive and confident, then you should focus on these two words ahead of your interview. Stop to truly consider exactly how someone who was attentive and confident would be, what kind of questions would they ask as well as their body language.


By mentally preparing yourself in this way ahead of time, you can get yourself into the right frame of mind and brush aside any querulous thoughts. Speak to your recruitment agency and gain as many tips as possible as you can from them. They will know the employer and the “right things to say”, use an Agency such as TimePlan recruitment, educational specialists for the best support.


Create a physical reminder

If you are having problems hanging on to the projection of a positive state of mind, adding a physical reminder can help to act as a prompt.


The best way to do this requires no more than your own hands and a bit of imagination.


Firstly you need to remember a time when you experienced being in the same mind-set that you previously chose, so for example, you might consider a day when you were especially confident. Whilst reliving this memory in full glorious details in your mind, simply push your thumb and forefinger together and release. Repeat this exercise several times whilst you mentally focus on how you felt on that day, what you saw and everything around you.


Once you reach the interview, if you repeat the physical reminder, and simply push your thumb and forefinger together, you will automatically be flooded with feelings of confidence (if that is the mind-set you had previously chosen). Easy to put in place and effective, this could be just the kind of secret support you need.


If you have more than one state of mind you want to recall, it is possible to use the same method but different fingers. For example, your little finger could mean calm; your ring finger could represent professionalism and so on.


For this to work, the key is to practice visualising the emotion whilst pressing together the relevant digits. If you focus on this enough in advance, when it comes to the interview, your brain will automatically link the action and the state of mind you want to create – easy!

The power quite literally is within your own hands

Once you are in there, forget about it!

When you go to an interview, practice your positive mind-set and physical prompts whilst you are waiting.


This should not only help distract you from building yourself up into a state whilst you are waiting to be called but will also mean you enter the room in the right frame of mind.


However, once you get in there, forget about it! Concentrate all your energy on listening and answering questions and try not to wonder what the interviewers might be thinking.


You won’t need to concentrate on creating your mind-set because the work in the waiting room will have set you up perfectly. But if you do need a mini-boost whilst you are in there all you need to is press you thumb and forefinger together discreetly to be instantly recharged.



These techniques have been tried and tested and work by creating a subconscious connection between your feelings and an action. It’s the same way that a certain song might always remind you of something; if a strong enough impression is gained between an event or thoughts and feelings and an action, the brain remembers it!


These techniques could be adapted to work for any occasion you feel nervous about but are wonderful for interviews. Subtle, discreet and powerful, you will feel much calmer about the occasion and are far more likely to perform to your best.


Image credits: wiccked and Bored_grrl

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