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5 Ways to Reduce Stress

Tips on Reducing Stress before Interviews or Important Calls

5 Ways to Reduce Stress Before an Interview or Call

The job market is competitive, and the stakes are high. You've spent countless hours perfecting your resume, researching companies, and rehearsing your answers. Now, the moment has arrived: the interview. As Robert Palmer sang “You can't sleep, you can't eat…” in Addicted to Love.

Don't worry; you're not alone. Interview anxiety is a common experience, but it's also manageable. Mike Mittleman, a career coach in the NY/NJ/CT Tri-State area, has helped hundreds of professionals like you navigate the turbulent waters of job interviews. Here are five proven strategies from Mike to help you reduce stress and perform at your best.

1. Prepare, Prepare, Prepare

Why It Works

Most job seekers do not really understand the target company’s culture and competitive culture and how they can fit it.

How to Do It

  • Research the Company: Do a Google to the 5th page to find out something unique

  • Know Your Role: Understand the job description inside and out.

  • Mock Interviews: Conduct mock interviews with a friend or a career coach.

2. Mindfulness and Breathing Exercises

Why It Works

Mindfulness techniques and breathing exercises can help you focus and reduce stress. They can also improve your concentration and mental clarity, helping you answer questions more thoughtfully.

How to Do It

  • Deep Breathing: Take deep breaths in through your nose for a count of 4 and out through your mouth for a count of 6. When I do this, I actually breath out for 8

  • Visualization: Close your eyes and visualize a positive scenario where you felt the most calm; my visualization is a field trip in 10th grade where I was alone in nature

3. Physical Exercise

Why It Works

Physical activity releases endorphins, which naturally elevates your mood and reduces stress. Even a short 10-minute walk can make a difference.

How to Do It

  • Quick Walk: Take a brisk 10-minute walk outside or at a minimum inside; I like to walk around my block

  • Stretch: Do some light stretching to relieve muscle tension, especially in your neck. I move my neck North, South, East, and West

4. Dress for Success

Why It Works

When you look good, you feel good. Dressing professionally boosts your confidence and helps you get into the 'role' more easily.

How to Do It

  • Professional Attire: Select an outfit one level above what the employees wear to the office. I would put on a suit to be safe

  • Match the Company’s Colors: Interviewing with Goldman, then wear a light blue shirt-their logo colors; I would even get a blue suit ready

5. Positive Affirmations and Self-Talk

Why It Works

Positive affirmations can rewire your brain to believe in your capabilities. This can be incredibly empowering and can boost your confidence.

How to Do It

  • Affirmations: Repeat affirmations like "I am capable," "I am deserving of this opportunity," or "I am prepared;" I say “I can add value”

  • Self-Talk: Challenge any negative thoughts by asking yourself if they're based on facts or just negative assumptions. I assume I will fail so I ask myself if this feeling reflects reality or not


Interviews and important calls are high-stakes situations that can induce stress. However, stress is manageable. By preparing adequately, engaging in mindfulness and breathing exercises, getting some physical exercise, dressing for success, and practicing positive affirmations, you can significantly reduce your stress levels and improve your performance.

Remember, the goal is not just to get the job but to excel in it. Reducing stress is the first step in showcasing your true potential. So, take a deep breath, you've got this!

Mike Mittleman is a career coach whose business focuses on finance professionals based in the NY/CT/NJ tri-state area, helping navigate their career paths with confidence and success. For more tips and personalized coaching, visit



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