Have you suffered through a frustrating job interview at some point in your career during which you found it impossible to demonstrate your best qualities? Perhaps there was one where your mind went blank, the person opposite seemed to take an instant dislike to you, or you stumbled over a question and couldn’t recover. Did you wonder where your interview preparations went wrong? I helped lots of people to prepare for interviews and get jobs when I worked as a recruitment consultant. I wish I’d had my cognitive hypnotherapy skills then, I could have helped many more of my candidates to get the jobs they wanted by training them to manage their minds better.
The conscious mind is the target of most advice contained in books and online resources on how to prepare to answer typical interview questions. These tips can seem helpful at the time you read them but may not help if your feelings and emotions take over as soon as you walk into the interview room. The knowledge you acquired through research and preparation can easily evaporate at this point. It can feel like a body double is sitting in the chair: you start to sweat, your voice turns squeaky, and for some reason you either say something completely out of character or your brain goes into ‘freeze mode’. Leaving the interview room kicking yourself because you couldn’t manage to say what you had prepared to say is an awful feeling.
Interviews are one of the most common situations in which we suffer a stress response and are emotionally hijacked. It’s one of those settings like public speaking when our mind is uncomfortable with the prospect of being judged by other humans. We can consciously tell ourselves to be confident but our unconscious may have other ideas. It does this for good reasons. It’s there to protect us from potential threats and works much quicker than the ‘rational’ thinking part of our brain. It is programmed to do so: it is the same immediate response mechanism as when we are faced with a physical threat. It doesn’t waste time thinking, it just reacts, emotionally. The feelings are there to get us to react. The clue is in the word – e-motion!
Cognitive hypnotherapy is a powerful and flexible approach which can help us to manage our minds better. The emphasis is on working together to understand how your mental landscape has been developed. If we can understand the individual learning mistakes which underpin the reactions you don’t want connected with interviews, with help it’s possible to ‘unlearn’ them and replace them with something more useful.
I use Cognitive Hypnotherapy techniques to help you to manage interviews better by:
• Uncovering the processes your mind may be using to create the unconscious meaning of an interview and stimulating an unwanted stress response. Once the causes are established, I can help you to develop approaches to interrupt them.
• Helping you to determine what is in your unconscious memory bank connected with the pattern it recognises as interviews or interview-like situations, which often go back to early experiences in school. We can help your mind to reinterpret these in future so that you are less likely to interpret them as a cause for alarm.
• Teaching you simple techniques to use ‘in the moment’ to reduce unwanted feelings in the before and during your interview meetings – you can download one for free here.
• Reconfiguring qualities stored within memories of previous interviews or other past experiences which are colouring how you respond in the present.
• Coaching you on ways of embodying confidence, not only to overcome your nerves but also to learn how to feel and project the version of yourself that you would most like to be in your interviews.
• Building a model of how you would most like to be before, during, and after your interviews. Based on this, I can create a bespoke hypnosis recording for you to listen to which will support the other work we have done together in our sessions.
As well as being a fully qualified Cognitive Hypnotherapist, I am also a career coach with over 20 years of experience as a recruitment professional. I combine all this experience to coach you in other practical ways so that you can get the most out of your interview experiences.
If you suspect that substandard interview performance is holding you back in your career, it’s worth considering Cognitive Hypnotherapy to help you make the most of yourself. If you would like to know more, I offer a free phone consultation. Please contact me here if you would like to arrange a conversation.