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crewneck

Extreme anxiety about applying for jobs

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For the last year I've been out of college and just working at my part-time job. I told myself after I graduation, I would look for a job in my field and quit my current job...but I've had such extreme anxiety about it I always just tell myself I'll get to it later. 

 

When I first graduated, I was extremely anxious about applying to jobs but I had a lot more hope back then...I ended up having an interview with a company I wanted to work for but I didn't make the final round of interviews. I was close but the rejection just tore me down so hard and gave me such intense depression. I was too scared to try again, I thought the anxiety and depression of trying again right now would destroy me. So I took a break to heal myself. But "my break" has extended a bit over a year now. I don't think I'll ever feel ready but I need to do something. Something more than what I am doing now. I've been trying to step back out and try to apply but I just can't get the motivation I need to do it. I'm terrified of going through the interview process. Always thinking to myself "there's better people out there that can do this better than me" or "I'm not skilled enough". I don't have the confidence I need...Is there anyone out there who can help me and bring me some insight? I feel so stuck right now, I just need advice from anyone that overcome a similar situation or anyone who knows anyone that has been in a similar situation.

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Hi crewneck,

    Wow, I can really empathize with what you said.  I am the same way about job interviews. 

    Wish I had some good advice for you, but I take medication before doing something really stressful [because I suffer from panic attacks].  I am not sure how I would handle a job interview without the medication.  Hopefully some of the other members here will have some useful advice for you.  If no one responds, I will try to remember something a psychiatrist told me about handling job interviews while under anxiety and depression.   Best to you ! ! !   - epictetus

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I'm terrified of going through an interview too.  In life when I used to have big moments coming up I would obsess about them until I to do those things.  If I had a big interview coming up now or any big day I would try to distract myself every second.  I would try not to think about it until I was actually sitting in front of the person.  Big moments in life are almost never as hard as we think they will be and it's impossible to know what the other person will say to us in the moment so rehearsing is pointless.  Just go in to the interview knowing what you're talking about and say the best response to what they say.  Nobody is truly comfortable talking to anyone so the person interviewing you will probably be just as nervous as you are.

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Hey crewneck,

I’m sorry to hear you’re going through this. I wish I had more advice on how to ease your anxiety on an interview, but I always find myself rather anxious myself for interviews. For example, an anecdote. at my first job interview ever they asked if there were any brands I was loyal to, and in my confusion of not knowing what to say,  I said Dorito’s. I mean... I could’ve given any other answer! But in reality, it’s not that big of a deal, and I think I cared much more about my fumble than my interviewer did. I can understand where you’re coming from when you think “I’m not skilled enough,” or “there are better people out there,” but you can’t think those things, because they aren’t true. I always try to remind myself when I think those things that it’s my brains way of convincing me to stay afraid, and to stop me from trying something new. A friend posted on Instagram once a quote that read “there are less qualified people doing the things you want to do because they believe in themselves. period.” And while I don’t love Instagram, there is some truth in that, isn’t there? I’m sorry you have so much anxiety over job interviews, I know it isn’t fun, and I wish I had better advice. My best advice, as corny as it is, is to believe in yourself. Because you are skilled.  And talented, and qualified, and deserving. 

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i really wish i had advice because i felt like that pretty much all my life. i avoid working because of my anxiety. it stinks.

i guess my advice would be to keep trying, keep putting yourself out there, and keep risking.....you are young, you will get rejected many times ( we all have) maybe its for the best until something better comes along! Also i'd probably go on youtube to look at interview tips and ideas , or to the library to get a book on that,  or ask your therapist if you see one if they have advice..

i think it's normal the way you feel, everyone does ...we all might think we aren't qualified enough or dont have much experience, but i also think self-esteem is important in an interview. i would say practice and keep telling yourself you can do this, and everyone starts from the bottom anyway, before getting to a better position, so build a little on your confidence,  i think that matters when you are being interviewed .. keep practicing and telling yourself you can do this

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Yes it happens to the best of us, applying for new jobs is as greater a task as any. i always had my tongue in fell into my stomach, i still have to spend a suspicious amount of time with my dog after every interview.

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A lot of people do not work in their degree field.  A lot of degrees these days are also a waste of time and money and there is a major surplus of degreed individuals out there right now.

Have you started networking with people at firms that you would like to work at?

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Hi Crewneck, I know this is a bit late, but I'd like to give my perspective in hopes that it will help you. A bit like you, I was hopeful that I would be able to land a job right after I was finished school, but job interviews always felt like a test in which the interviewer was just waiting for me to do or say one wrong thing. When I didn't get the job, all I could do is wonder what I did wrong. It never occurred to me that maybe I was perfect among a pool of other perfect candidates, but they could only choose one. I know how it feels to think you're not good enough, but try to understand that our mind can convince us of a lot of things if we let it. I believe confidence stems from the ability to ignore that annoying voice in your head that tells you that you can't.

Everything that has been achieved started with the belief that it could be done. Try to set a goal of sending out a few resumes a day and don't take it personal if you don't receive a response back. There are a million reasons why you may not hear back or may not get a job after being called in; none of which may have had anything to do with your performance, so don't beat yourself up over it. Also, I don't know what you studied, but many people find that they are unable to get a job in the field that went to school for and that's OK. You may get into something else that you really enjoy and maybe you can continue trying to find a job in that particular field once you are financially stable. Wishing you the best.

 

 

Edited by BryBry

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