Going through interviews and struggling a lot with social anxiety and feeling awkward. In final rounds at a company where the next interview will be strongly focused on understanding personality and fit. Doing great on content but really can’t connect with people, especially over Zoom. Being a strong introvert doesn’t help either. Any recommendations on things you would do to connect beyond job related Q&A? Also, any tips to control nerves during the interview?

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1. Don’t think about the whole interview. Focus on the first five. If you get that right, chances of you acing remaining interview is much higher. 2. Schedule interviews for a late morning start (just in case you don’t sleep well). Ideal is afternoon. 3. Do breathing exercises prior to the interview. 4. Eat nuts/fruits/granola etc. Avoid heavy breakfast/meals. 5. The person on the other side may also have same anxiety or reservations about video interviews. Make a joke about that at the start of the call. I never thought I could do well with video interviews. Had to change my mindset since we are operating like this for the foreseeable future. Did well enough to just pass phone screening. At multiple FAANGs. Negotiating offers currently.

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I’ve suggested this on this bowl for other reasons, but I’ve applied it to interviews, too: I use mantra to tell myself that everything will be okay. A couple of minutes of hearing myself say what makes me and the interviewer both human, how we both want a good, positive experience and a good outcome, and we both want to be happy is helpful. My brain is then able to let go of some of the nonsense things that anxiety brings because I’ve shifted my attention to something positive.

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Fake it till you make it, take a shot before

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