By DebbieH 14 Aug 2018 7 min read

How to combat interview nerves

We’ve all suffered from interview nerves. The typical telltale signs include a rapidly beating heart, blood gushing around your body, sweaty palms and a flushed-looking face. You’re nervous.

But why does this happen? Are you overthinking it perhaps? Maybe you’re desperate to impress your future boss, or you want to prove yourself to your family? Whatever it is playing on your mind, you won’t be the only one to have felt like this before an interview. 

Don’t let your nerves get the better of you – follow our 5 proven steps to beat interview nerves below:


Don’t speak too fast

If you are nervous, more than likely you will speak much quicker than usual. If you speak too fast during your interview, they might miss a valid point that you were trying to make, which could lower your chances of getting the job you want.

It’s completely normal to be nervous, but try to calm yourself down. Breathing methods work really well here – inhale for 10 seconds, hold it for 5 seconds and exhale for 10 seconds. Do this as many times as you need to, and you should find that after it, you will feel much calmer. Which hopefully means you will be able to speak slower during your interview. 


Plan and prepare

The best way to keep your cool is to come prepared. Employers want organised staff, and you’d be surprised how easily they can gauge this during your interview.

The best way to prepare for an interview is to research the company that you want to work for. Know their products and how they work, and if possible research the person who is interviewing you to get a better understanding of what they do too. Displaying your knowledge in the interview WILL impress – and it;s a very easy way of proving just how much you care about the job in question. After all, you wouldn’t go into an exam without revising, so don’t treat an interview any different if you’re serious about the role.



Think you know the questions you’ll be asked in your interview? That’s great, but you don’t want to come across as robotic when it comes to presenting your answers. If you’re confident about what you’ll be asked during your interview, make sure you rehearse your answers so that you can apply each point you want to make in detail.

The key here is that you don’t want to come across as scripted during your interview, and you definitely don’t want to just answer the question. When we say this, we mean that you should always emphasise your answers with an example, preferably from past experience. Answering questions in black and white displays that you’ve completed the bare minimum to prepare.


Arrive early

Punctuality is so important during interview stage. But more importantly, it gives you time to collect your thoughts and plan ahead. Showing up early also proves a positive move to your employer. While they’re happy to see that you’re ready to impress, you can gather your thoughts.

Try not to arrive too early for your interview – it could put unnecessary pressure on the interviewer to finish their work for you. Wait in your car, or outside the venue until around 10 minutes before your meeting – you might even want to prepare your answers out loud to kill some time.  



The time before your job interview is always nerve-wracking. But those crucial minutes are your chance to get in to the right mindset and really focus on your purpose and objectives. Instead of stressing, ask yourself what you want to leave your interviewer with and plan the questions you would like to ask at the end of the interview. By focusing on what you want to get out of the interview, you take away from the strain on how you would like to perform.

Want more advice on how to tackle your interview? See our careers advice section for more blogs.