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5 Things NOT To Do On An Interview

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Some of what we try to include here on InspireConversation.com are pieces of advice and guidance on success, tools that every member of the family can use to be their best. Today we discuss some advice from a recent article in Money magazine.

The tips shared in the article are written for job interviews. For teens looking to land summer work or their first internships, this advice should help them to be the best they can.

For younger children this can be advice to start incorporating today to prepare them for a variety of life situations. Because landing a job is about “selling ourselves” – and the best way to sell yourself is by having a great “product” – the tips outlined below are really about being better people. These tips are useful for work, for our relationships, and for life in general.

5 Things to Avoid, Both in Job Interviews and in Life:

Adapted from advice provided by Money magazine.

1. Anxiousness – Plenty of things in life can make us anxious. The idea of change, tackling new responsibilities, and yes…job interviews. When looking to impress a potential employer or putting your best foot forward in any setting, it is best to try to set our anxiousness aside.

When it comes to actually combatting anxiousness, one technique is to role play or otherwise think through the situation that is causing you anxiety. We get anxious about the things that we can’t predict for certain, so removing as many of those possibilities as we can by planning for them will help alleviate anxiety. At the same time, you’ll have to accept that you can’t control everything, and begin to trust in yourself that when the time comes, you will respond the best you can.

2. Arrogance – The opposite of anxious feelings would have to be confidence, but there is a very fine line between the positive quality of confidence and the negative one known as arrogance. Overconfidence (also known as arrogance) can cause a rift between people.

Remain humble and stay on the right side of confidence. When we tread into sweeping generalities and become great at everything instead of a few specific things, we distance ourselves from reality and become less useful to ourselves and others.

3. Angriness – Anger is one of those emotions that sets us apart from our fellows. It can be easy to see when it is glaring (no one wants to be around the person who throws things or yells all the time) but harder when it manifests itself in subtler ways. Being judgemental or negative can be forms of anger, and ones we need to watch out for.

Try to remain positive, or at least neutral. When we focus on things done wrong, it is easy to get angry. Looking at what can be done better or what we can bring to the table keeps things in the positive, and makes us easier to work with.

4. Apathetic – Apathy is a fancy way of saying “not caring” and can be a big turn off to others – whether they are looking to hire us or simply hang around us. Having a passion for life is important, as are finding ways to show it.

“Playing it cool” isn’t about not caring or developing an opinion, but about being open to other opinions and ways of doing something. Avoid an “all or nothing” attitude and think about ways to work with others. Being interested in what others have to say isn’t a weakness, it makes us better people.

5. Available – Being too eager can also come back to haunt us, both in a job search and beyond. There is a balance between apathy and (over) availability.

When it comes to job interviews, seeming too eager or too available might make you seem less appealing. In life, being too effusive can come across as disingenuous, even when we really mean it. Sometimes it might make sense to temper your emotions and availability – it might make other people more comfortable.

These 5 “A’s” all represent characteristics that prevent us from being our best, and showing the world what we can do. No matter how young or how old you are, there is no time like the present to bring mindfulness to these potential traps, and thus begin to work them out of your lives. The more we can make self improvement a way of life, the more we are able to grow.