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Boost Your Confidence

   Article by Carole Martin

Your hands are damp as you wring them uncontrollably. Your mouth is dry, and you wonder if the right words will ever escape your lips. Your stomach is doing loop-de-loops as you make yet another run for the bathroom. And this is only the day before the interview.

You say you're nervous about interviewing? You're not alone. It is very common -- and normal -- to be nervous before the interview. Feeling anxious will raise your energy level, and that's a good thing.

But just to be sure you don't get too nervous, here are some tips from fellow MSN Careers members. These are the people who are out in the trenches interviewing in today's tight job market, and their advice will help boost your confidence and morale. And as far as your sweaty palms are concerned, MSN Careers member Slw600 suggests, "Deodorant on the hands works beautifully. It actually smelled good, and my hands felt soft, warm and dry. You have no idea how much better I felt."

Why not try these suggestions, too?

Preparation Tips

"Preparation builds my confidence. I review what I did at my previous jobs so I can tie in what I can bring to the new company. -- Pap1234

"Actually writing down my answers to expected questions makes it seem more like I'm going to perform in a play rather than go on a job interview. I feel more focused about what I am going to say." -- TalentedButUnlucky1

Don't Forget to Practice

"Rehearse your answers. Write them down as a script and recite them in front of a mirror. Have backup answers, too. You'll come across as being more confident." -- Rocknation

"The best thing you can do is practice, practice and practice some more. The only one who knows you and can sell you is you. Your goal should be to effectively display the following qualities: capability, confidence, dependability, enthusiasm, flexibility, resourcefulness and strong work ethic." -- Cairn

"Do you have a friend or family member who could do a mock interview? I found doing them to be a tremendous help." -- Onajobhuntingvacation

Just Relax

"Are you being yourself? If you are, great! You should be able to interview and be employed with the same personality. Some people lay it on thick for the interview. I call that the 'Eddie Haskell syndrome.' Your tone of voice, facial expressions and body language speak volumes about you. Let the interviewer get to know the real you." -- Swflorida5

"Try this: You are having a casual conversation with someone you know but not really well. Don't try to anticipate the questions too much -- just respond as if it were a conversation." -- Smac1954

"Remember, in this country they can't skin you and they can't eat you -- so relax." -- Hedtec

Motivate Yourself

"Remember when one door closes, another one opens. The fact that you are proactively seeking advice and support says a lot about you." -- Sisgal

"Be kind to yourself. Call someone you know to vent, and watch or read something that will make you smile or laugh." -- Savvy_pro

Searching for a job is not easy. You may find your emotions rising and falling like a roller coaster. It's important to keep your morale up during this period of the job search. Keep the momentum going and don't give up. Giving up is defeat -- and you're not a quitter.

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