Dealing with Anxiety (Post-Interview Or Otherwise)

dealing-with-post-interview-anxiety2016 Update: We still stand by the advice below on dealing with post-interview anxiety — but you may also want to check out our latest discussion on how to focus on work (when your thoughts are elsewhere). 

Reader M had a question about post-interview anxiety, something I notice coming up in the comment threads a lot…

I had a second round interview this week, and I’m waiting to hear back. The job is working in-house for a big company. Their legal team is spread throughout their offices, so my first interview was with HR, then my second interview was with their VP Legal Counsel and another Senior Counsel attorney. I think it went well, but I’m so anxious. My first question is what to do with anxiety while waiting to hear back about a job? My second question is if anyone has stories from successful interviews that might shed light on whether or not it went well.

The wonderful thing about interviewing for jobs outside your own company is that they have no idea what a stressball you may be after the interview. (Of course, for jobs inside the company you have to keep your cool, which is even tougher — but hopefully less stress-inducing given that you can “read” the personalities better and they know you better.) There are two interesting questions here: what to do to ease anxiety, and how to know if an interview went well.  I’ll take the second one first.

How to know an interview went so well that you’ll get the job: You can’t. Unless you know the interviewer (or the interviewers), you really won’t have any idea if things went well. I’ve been on some interviews that I thought went laughably bad (and then was offered the position) and some that I thought went over-the-moon great (and then didn’t get the position). (I fondly remember one interview, during interview week at law school: I sat down, prepared to talk about the law firm, and was shocked when the interviewer said “Yeah, so, based on your first year grades and the fact that you’re on law review, we’re going to extend an offer. Can I answer any questions you have?” — couldn’t they all be so easy?) But interview success depends on that fine mix of who else is interviewing for the position, what the company is looking for (which may be something as simple as “someone different than the last person to hold this job” in ways that you can’t really identify), what MOOD the interviewer is in, where they are in the interview process (too early and they may not have figured out what they want; too late and it may just be a polite gesture). So how do you handle interviews? You focus on what you can control: you. You give the best interview you can, you prepare as much as you can, you follow up to the extent that you feel comfortable (there is a wide spectrum, on both sides, of what is “go getter” versus “pushy”) — and you let the cards fall where they may. It isn’t necessarily a personal reflection on you if you don’t get the job.

But all of this is easier said than done — the anxiety after an interview can be intense. We’ve talked about ways to relax before, and now might be a great time to reopen that discussion.  I think general stress is one thing, but I think of anxiety as really strong stress that is triggered by one particular situation or one thing, which you probably can’t do anything about.  Personally, I do the following kinds of things when I’m anxious:

– Exercise. A walk, a run, a good aerobics workout — it’s amazing how I can feel my shoulders and neck “unlock” in the middle of the workout. You carry so much stress with you, and you don’t even realize it.

– Make dates with a lot of friends. This way you keep occupied enough that you don’t dwell on the anxiety too long, and by seeing a lot of different people you won’t drive any one person crazy with your own anxiety. In my experience, I’ve found that friends have to be very, very close to sit through more than 3 conversations about the same stress points, especially when there a) is no clear way to resolution, or b) they’ve suggested things to handle the situation (more appropriate where it’s boyfriend- or family-related stress) and you haven’t taken the advice.

– Brain candy. When I’m stressed, I find that focusing my full brain power on anything else seems impossible. So I turn to things that I call brain candy — reality TV shows (America’s Next Top Model is a particular favorite — so many of the contestants are unintentionally hilarious) or easy-to-read books that are well-written but lurid enough to suck me in. I just devoured (again) Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton series, and Charlaine Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse mysteries always capture my attention. I particularly find that these books are great before bedtime, because they get my mind away from things that are stressing me out.

– Make lists. Maybe I’m alone here, but lists sometime help me solidify my thinking. I’ve used them to nail down what I’m worried about (you’ll be amazed at how the list goes on once you start writing them down), and to make pros and cons lists to remember that there are both pluses and minuses to getting the situation.  I find that lists are also helpful to realize that some of the thoughts in my head can be kind of silly when I’m stressed — for example, write out “this one job will make or break my entire career” — see, doesn’t that look fairly silly? (This isn’t to say that there aren’t hugely important, singular opportunities — things like a Supreme Court clerkship, for example. But those are few and far between, and if you have gotten to the interview point on something like that, your career already sounds golden.)

– Sleep. Everything looks better in the morning.

Avoid anxiety loops. Every so often, I let myself get overwhelmed by stressful, anxious thoughts, and I go into what I call “loops” — StressPointA takes me to slightly-related StressPointB which takes me to slightly-related StressPointC (and so forth) which leads me back to A. When I find myself caught in a loop, I can’t actually make any decisions or come to a helpful point of view — I just get panicked and frenzied, leading to sleepness nights and totally unproductive days.  Avoiding the loop is critical — getting enough sleep (see above re: brain candy and exercise), keeping occupied, etc.  I also try to avoid too much “alone in my head” time when I’m in one of those moods — I once broke down in tears in a yoga class because my brain was looping.   (Once you’re in a loop, well… a glass of wine may help you ease up or cause you to loop further; it really depends on you and the moment. If you find yourself frequently in this situation, talk to your doctor because there may be a prescription that can help, either on a sometimes basis or an every day basis.  Be careful, though: anxiety drugs can be very addictive, so don’t borrow a friend’s pill — talk to your doctor about them, and follow his or her instructions.)

Readers, what do you do when you’re trying to relax from anxiety, either from a job interview or from a particularly stressful situation? And, do you have any fun interview stories to share — times you knew you nailed it, or wondered how it could go so wrong?


  1. I am in this exact position now… and looking for advice on how to walk the fine line between pushy and go-getter.

    The interview went well (I think!!) It is for a legal position. They are hiring 3 people total and it appears they are interviewing 200 or so for the first round at various campuses. I am sending a thank you note today (interview was yesterday). He gave me his card and his direct number “in case I had further questions”. I won’t find out if I made the second round until the end of next week. Should I call, or is that too much?!

    Also, I guess I should mention one of my old bosses (a higher profile professor at my school) made a phone call and left a “glowing recommendation” on my behalf.

    Corporetters: how much is too much?

    • AnonInfinity :

      I would not call until after the timeline they gave you has expired.

    • Do not call with questions until after you get the offer. The “here is my direct dial” was just to be polite.

  2. I love the expression “brain candy” to describe the Sookie Stackhouse novels. That is so perfect. Little mental effort, high enjoyment. It’s like watching tv, except in written form.

    • I love the Sookie Stackhouse novels. I’m in the middle of re-reading them for the umpteenth time right now.

      • yep! I need to re-read sometime before June in anticipation of the new True Blood season:-)

    • Agreed. I went to an event the author was speaking at recently and she was so charming and exactly how you’d imagine her from the book. Made me want to re-read.

  3. If you get those anxiety loops often, consider going on anxiety medication (like zoloft, which treats depression AND anxiety). It’s helped me a ton.

    • AnonInfinity :

      Cognitive behavioral therapy can also work wonders.

    • This is true. I’m doing both and they’re both VERY helpful. Giving zoloft another shot again now, though. Definitely has side effects, but so does anxiety!

    • +1 for both anti-anxiety meds and CBT. Sometimes you just have to accept that being able to sleep at night is worth it.

    • Agreed. And being on them made me realize how much it is a chemical imbalance. I’d worry about things but I wouldn’t spiral out of control.

      • Agreed. I finally saw a psychiatrist/psychologist a while ago when I was going through some stressful things, and had I seen him earlier it would have been helpful — I think I saw him as I was pulling out of it myself. (I actually though it was ADD because I couldn’t concentrate, but neither Adderol nor Ritalin had any affect on me, so he gave me a scrip for Xanax. Lifesaver. I take it once in a blue moon (I understand it’s very addictive, like Kat says) but when I take it I realize how much of it is a chemical imbalance — I calm down almost immediately. Like blowing the foam off a cappuccino or something. I only take one when I’m really stressed, or if it’s like 1 AM and I can tell it’s going to be a long sleepless night otherwise. (On those mornings that I wake up stressing out at 4 AM I just tough it out.)

        • minor edit — neither the Adderol nor Ritalin had any GOOD effect on me. Just made me feel like my heart was going to explode. Oh, and the first time I took Adderol I wound up changing my FreshDirect order like 10 times in the space of 3 hours. Jump-y.

    • Jurastudentin :

      Or Lexapro! I started taking it a few months ago, and it makes me feel so much better. My anxiety caused sleeping problems, with which even Ambien didn’t help. Now I rarely struggle falling asleep, never have panic attacks, and feel much more at peace. It is such a wonderful change.

  4. These are all good ways to alleviate general anxiety. However, the best practice for feeling more confident during the interview process is to build a pipeline of interviews and prospects. This way, after you are done with your second round at company A, you start preparing for first round at company B. Whatever anxieties you have, you’ll be distracted by your efforts to do your best in that second opportunity. This also helps with bouncing back from the imminent disappointments that a job search is comes hand in hand with.

    • Love it! Excellent idea! Do you have any advice for a situation where you receive an offer from job A but nothing yet from job B, and job B is the prefered job?

      • AnonInfinity :

        Have you had an interview yet? When this has happened to me in the past, I have just called my contact at job B and asked if they had a timeline for a decision because I had another offer.

        • Yes, I had the interview. The timeline went like this. Thursday: Received offer for Job A with a Monday deadline. Also received invitation for interview at Job B. Monday: had what I thought was a great (but can never tell) interview with Job B. I actually did respond to job A and said I can’t commit yet . He told me to email him in a week and if I wanted the job it’s mine. I was primarily asking to see what other people would have done in the same situation.

          Also, fyi, I am not employeed at the moment. I am a 2L looking for summer positions.

          • Yes – was in the exact same situation recently. Several thoughts:

            – 3/4 days is a very short window to accept/reject an offer. I’ve done campus recruiting too (during my MBA) and the school had negotiated time windows for accepting/ rejecting offers. So you have done the right thing to ask for more time.

            – I would contact job B and tell them my situation and how much time I have to make a decision. Depending on how certain you are whether they are your number one choice, I would communicate that too. For me, my certainty level was say 50%, so I phrased it as “I thought my meetings with your group went well and I’m very excited about what your group is doing. I have a little bit of time before I have to decide so I wanted to check in with you and find out if you’ll be interested to continue the conversations”. I did this for 2 positions – one of them responded right away and brought me in for an interview the next day. If timing is of importance – the interview was on Wed, they checked references on Thu& Fri and extended the offer on Mon.

            – In general, you should feel a lot more confident with one offer under your belt – which I’m not sensing from what you’ve written (of course, I might be wrong)
            Good luck!

          • Hi Melissa, I went to an agency and thought the interview went well. Spoke with two recruiters and was asked to followup in about three weeks. A few days later I received an e-mail that there was no need to call back and if they have openings that fit my qualifications they would be in touch. Talk about an anxious moment. I have a bachelor’s degree, pursuing a masters, and worked for a great company for 11 1/2 years.

            Any comments on utilizing an agency in your job hunt?

          • Maria,

            I’ve never used an agency. Although I do read AsktheHeadhunter, which talks about recruiters and stuff like that. Maybe that’ll be a good resource.

            Also, just an update. Heard back from Job B and unfortunately, I didn’t get it. I was in the Top 5 and did they whole “thank you for calling me and letting me know. Please keep me in mind for the future” bit. Do you guys ever do the replaying it all in your head game after a rejection? I am doing that right now.

  5. Augh!! We’re in this now. Husband was told today that it’s down to him and one other guy, and they’re trying to get approvals to hire them both. It’s so hard to get work done today and not get on every real estate site to look at houses in the new area the potential job is in. (Oh man housing prices are low there!)

    • Ugh, the waiting game is so terrible! But, I would totally indulge the urge to look at real estate sites. Just try to limit yourself to 15 minutes every 1.5-2 hours or so.

  6. Speaking of brain candy, I would love some good romance novel recommendations. I like characters that are smart or witty and a lot of what’s out there have women whose main quality us their beauty, and that’s about it. The worst was one where the hero fell in love with the 16 year old heroine because she haas been so sheltered her whole life and he found her complete her complete ignorance about EVERYTHING charming. Gag.

    • try Julia Quinn’s stuff. It’s all Regency romance, but the heroines are all smart. The author herself is a bit of an overachieving chick — she started writing the books 2 months after she graduated from Harvard undergrad, and wound up dropping our of Yale med school when her romance novelist career took off.

      • I totally turn to romance novels when I’m stressed and save “real” lit for calmer times, which is not as often as I’d like. Julia Quinn is good, as is Stephanie Laurens. Her heroines are of course gorgeous, but also tend to kick butt. I have to admit I’ll read pretty much anything though as long as it doesn’t have horrendous grammar that makes me want to pull out a pen and edit. My new criteria though is that the book has to be respectable enough that when DH grabs it and starts dramatically reading it aloud I’m not *totally* mortified that I’ve been caught.

        • Oh, and if I’m not reading romances, I love YA series like the Hunger Games trilogy or the Percy Jackson series. I should just hand back my BA in English Lit right now.

          • Love the Hunger Games. I know book clubs of very brainy ladies (including many with English Lit degrees) that devoured this triology.

          • SF Bay Associate :

            I really liked the His Dark Materials series, too. And I won’t admit to just how many times I’ve the entire Harry Potter series.

          • Can I just say, I’m so glad to know I’m not the only BA in English Lit that reads and loves romance novels for brain candy? Heading to the library today to check out some of these recommendations.

      • Julia Quinn really is great. Very clever. Love her stuff – the Bridgertons are a good place to start.

    • If you haven’t read Laurne Willig’s “Pink Carnation” series you might enjoy. She’s a former practicing BigLaw attorney from Harvard who also completed / started (I can’t remember which) her PhD in history. The series follows a Harvard history PhD who is doing her disertation on English spies during the Napoleonic wars while she is doing research in London. Very interesting “voice” to the story, back and forth between the main character from the present day and the different (female!) spies she finds in her research. Romance is going on in both time periods. The novels are well written, fairly short, easy to read and most definitely “brain candy”!

    • the website “smart bitches trashy books” ( has lots of recommendations & reviews of romance novels! i’m not much of a romance reader myself but find the reviews so enjoyable i check in on the site often.

      • I second the Smart Bitches reviews. That’s where I get most of my new book recommendations. They do funny, thoughtful reviews and have a very low tolerance for the sexist bullshit that sometimes makes its way in.

        • I just checked it out – that site’s great! I actually laughed out loud at their review of the Sweet Valley High book. When I think of all the time I wasted on those…

    • Diane Gabaldon’s Outlander series is kind of romance… They sort of defy genre categorization, actually. Part romance, part historical fiction, part sci-fi. The first one is just called Outlander.

    • Accountress :

      My faves:

      Regency- Eloisa James, Lisa Kleypas, Julia Quinn x1000, Stephanie Laurens (although she can sometimes get a little too thoughtful for what’s supposed to be a fun easy read); Contemporary- Rachel Gibson; both- Patricia Cabot/Meg Cabot, Katie MacAllister (also has fun paranormal

      • Ditto on Eloisa James and Julia Quinn for historical romance.

        Suzanne Brockmann for romantic suspense (and Navy SEALS). She’s got a 16 novel series with recurring characters and subplots. I reread them every time a new book comes out.

        J.D. Robb for romantic suspense – its a pseudonym for Nora Roberts, and another multi-novel series with recurring characters.

    • Argh, got the posting too quickly error! Here is what you need: smartbitchestrashybooks dot com. Go there. It is, indeed, for smart bitches, who love trashy books.

      Julia Quinn is high on my list of authors who write romances without rape-y heroes and too stupid to live heroines, but my favorite modern writer is Loretta Chase. Georgette Heyer, in my opinion, wrote the smartest, funniest romance novels ever (and invented the Regency genre as we know it today) – The Grand Sophy and These Old Shades are my favorites. They’re from the 1920s, so you don’t have to worry about folks on the bus reading graphic sex over your shoulder.

      Also, not a romance (a mystery), but in my opinion, the ultimate love story for those of us who were bookish girls is Dorothy Sayers’ Gaudy Night. And these aren’t brain candy (they’re actually very dense), but Dorothy Dunnett’s Lymond Chronicles contain my favorite romantic arc in literature.

      • Thanks everyone, these should keep me busy for a while!

        • Hi Imp, international espionage has helped me; Robert Ludlum has served me well in the past and a new author is Eric Van Lustbader in line with Robert Ludlum is also a good read.

      • I’m slowly working my way through my mother’s Georgette Heyer books. The slang is a bit difficult, but otherwise they’re great.

    • chicwithbrains :

      try the Piers Anthony novels. The xanath series is pull of puns, and most of the heroines are fairly plucky. It’s my brain candy of choice

      • Not really romance, but Jasper Fforde’s Thursday Next novels have had me literally laughing out loud. The first in the series is The Eyre Affair. I am trying to figure out how to describe these novels, but I can’t do them justice – think time travel and the ability to go into books as if they were other countries.

        • There are more?! I read The Eyre Affair and adored it. It was fun and quirky. I didn’t even think to check if there were more. There goes my weekend :)

          • There are 3 or 4 more, plus a new one just came out! There go TWO of your weekends!

        • I started reading the Thursday Next books in a fairly stressful time recently and then when things calmed down they totally inspired me to pick up some of the “classics” I didn’t get in high school or college. I think they’re terrific and funny even if you don’t get all the literary references, but everyone is sure to get some!
          I also think he published a new one fairly recently…

      • I loved these! I haven’t read them in years, though. Hopefully they’re still in my old bedroom.

      • SF Bay Associate :

        I read those in middle school and really enjoyed them, though I bet most of the puns went right over my head. I might try them again, thanks!

    • For good recommendations, I’d say to do some browsing at All About Romance ( They have a lot of different reviewers and you can search their database by reviewer to see whose tastes might square with yours. There are three people over there whose picks have worked really well for me and I’ve found some authors that I don’t think I would have tried otherwise.

      I’d second the recs on what is below, and I also like Julie James for contemporaries.

    • Historical Fiction Brain Candy :

      Try the Philippa Gregory series about the Tudors. It starts with The Other Boleyn Girl.

    • Love this thread…am going to scour the books/authors you ladies recommend.

  7. Ha! I was just trying to talk myself out of a loop over the past two days! I found myself that stopping myself in the middle of that anxiety spiral and saying (in my head), “this is a journey. It won’t happen overnight, and you’re going to have to work hard. But you want this, so put in the effort and keep doing it.”

    It definitely helped stop the loop at that moment, and I’ve repeated it to myself whenever I feel the anxiety creeping back in. It’s (slowly) helping!

  8. AnonInfinity :

    I do all of the things you listed except that I do not make lists — they just stress me out even more (and lead to anxiety loops).

    My anxiety was extremely high during time when the larger firms in my area started making job offers (about a 3-week period). I found that if I did not work out and sleep like they were my job, I could hardly get through the day. I would also set times where I’d let myself be anxious. So, for example, I’d eat dinner and then let myself obsessively check my phone for missed calls (you know, in case I didn’t hear it ring when it was turned up on the loudest setting possible and sitting in my lap) until the start of 30 Rock (or whatever). I also had a good friend who was going through exactly the same thing and we talked about it a lot. It helped me to just verbalize some of my thoughts so I could stop thinking them.

    Good luck! It’s a stressful time, but hopefully it’ll be over soon.

  9. Working out when I’m stressed make me stressed. I know. Weird. Massage and self-care work better.

  10. I like to watch old cable movies when I am stressed. The best and easiest is just to turn to Turner’s Cable Station or American Movie Classics, heat up a bowl of popcorn (air popper – no grease), and imagine how different things were in the 1940’s and 1950’s, which I call the world of Donna Reed. You should try it.

    Oh, I heard that “Mad Men” isn’t coming out for the next season until 2012. Isn’t that terrible? I just love that program!

  11. I just want to vent for a second:
    I was applying with a legal nonprofit where I had two in person interviews, and met the entire staff. In the end I was sent a rejection email addressed to “Dear Applicant” which had the < marks down the left side indicating it had been forwarded without even editing them out.

    It is just frustrating after putting so much time and energy and thought into looking professional, being on time, writing thank you notes, scheduling appointments. I'm use to getting rejections after the interview stage, but so far they have all been very thoughtful and kind and professional. I wasn't expecting a form email after meeting these people in person. sigh.

    I'm increasingly frustrated with how horrible the application process is. It's gotten to the point where if an organization sends me a form email confirming receipt of my application and making me aware of their tentative timeline, I want to reply thank them profusely for being so courteous and informative.

    • Ballerina girl :

      Agreed, that sucks. Bad form.

    • I find it even worse when I’ve driven hours to an interview and don’t get so much as a form rejection. It seems like it’s not that hard to send out a few rejection letters.

      • I flew to Miami for a clerkship interview only to be told before even meeting the judge that he only hires clerks with a few years’ experience but he just wanted to meet me, and then he sat with me for a whole five minutes. I appreciated the chance to interview with a federal judge, but I would have preferred to save the $600 in last-minute airfare and hotel bills.

    • Ugh! I’m so sorry. You’re right, that’s terribly unprofessional and disrespectful of your time. You’re so not alone in the application process thing. I had the same frustrations. You go to some fancy-pants law school with high hopes that when you come out, you’ll be in in the “big girl” job market, and then the job search at the end is even more dehumanizing that the BA/S outlook. It’s not that I expected high salaries–I got that reality check, and frankly that’s not what I was after anyway. I just wanted, you know, to be treated with some kind of respect, or at least professional courtesy.

    • I’ll second this rant! When I was going through the interview process, it was really disheartening not to hear anything. I’m with you, I got to the point that I felt grateful for the auto-reply of receipt of my information! Hang in there, when the right job comes along, they’ll be very welcoming and respectful to you!

    • Thanks for empathizing :)

    • It sucks even more if the company doesn’t even bother to send a rejection letter after I have wasted time and energy preparing and going to the interview and if I follow up, they act all annoyed and say that the position has been filled.

      And I can’t begin to count how many times this has happened.

      • Or even worse, they won’t respond to an email or call asking if the position has been filled.

        I had several firms that did that – it really impacted how I felt about them, especially now that I sometime interact with them in my new position. Firms should realize that the legal world is a small world. Even if someone isn’t the right fit for a particular job, there is a good chance you’ll run into them again.

  12. Great post. Two thoughts:

    1) My worst interview was with a judge and it was just ridiculously hard (think long, neverending, always changing hypotheticals). I was thinking to myself the whole time, there is NO WAY I am getting this clerkship. He offered me the job at the end of the interview, and I actually thought he might be kidding, just to mess with me. The point is that you just never know how it is going. Especially if an interview is more intellectual or challenging.

    2) Anxiety loops suck. I have found that I am generally better off getting myself out of them rather than leaning on someone else to get me out of a loop. I got myself into the loop, and sometimes the only way out is for me to build a rational ladder of thoughts that will help me climb out (the loop has turned into a pit in this metaphor). Unless the person really understand the situation, and your emotional response to it, they might not know the right thing to say. And at times can even make it worse, if their reaction reinforces one of the pieces of your loop. Sometimes I will share something that is stressing me out with my hubs, but then be really specific in terms what kind of feedback I am looking for (e.g., tell me it is going to be okay and I am not crazy versus actual contructive advice).

    • Good recommendation on telling your spouse what will make you feel better. My poor hubs always gives me “speeches on what to do next time….” Drives me cRaZy.

  13. This is so timely – I’m an out-of-work midlevel attorney and I almost every day I get caught in these anxiety loops that I’ll never work in my field again and I’ve completely sidelined my legal career. I took a risk on a new opportunity that totally didn’t end up working out for me, and I can’t stop kicking myself for leaving my old job. I’m trying to limit how much I bore my friends with the same old anxieties. I think I’ll take the exercise suggestion to heart and go for a walk (especially with all the spare time I have now…)

  14. No Longer Job Hunting in LA :

    I totally agree with Mila K. Don’t let one perfect job or a great interview slow your job search. I just had an interview for a great position, much better than I ever thought I could get (I’m a paralegal re-entering the workforce after spending ten years as a stay-at-home mom). I agonized over what I did and didn’t do in the interview. I theorized about little things my interviewers said and did. I couldn’t sleep. I lost five pounds. But I felt much better when I found openings at two other great firms and applied. All my hopes were hinged on that one perfect job, but when I realized that there were other great jobs out there, I was less anxious.

    • I’m also looking into paralegal jobs, but unfortunately, I don’t have enough knowledge or experience to be a full-blown paralegal. At best, I’ll start out as a file clerk and work my way up from there.

      No Long Job Hunting in LA, do you have any advice or tips into how to break into the field?

  15. I commented about this maybe a month ago after a full day multi-person interview. Then there was a follow up with another person who was out of the office the day I came in. Now back in the waiting game. Definately agree on staying busy. I’ve been cleaning out closets, focusing on work to make it better if I don’t get the position and build hours so I can take a day off if I don’t get the position and need a recovery day, working out a lot… I’m will be surprised if some of my good friends don’t email me a link to this article.

    • That’s a great point. I find myself becoming disengaged at my job whenever I start thinking about new job potential, and that’s a dangerous place to be. Maybe if I was more invested where I already am, I would be less unsatisfied with it. And in all reality, I might be stuck here anyway. Might as well be prepared to like it.

  16. Books: I like Marion Keyes the best, Irish chic lit of a good sort, but have read all hers.

    Anxiety: battle this myself, not for career-related for for health things. It is really difficult and have been struggling with it for a while, so finally am starting to meet witha professional. It took a long time for me to accept that I couldn’t ‘fix’ it myself. Occasionally take something when really needed but don’t view that as solution. Try all the normal suggestions (breathing, muscle relaxation, imagery blabla) none of that helps if you are in a panicky state. Hoping to try CBT and also ordered books on my specific type of anxiety to keep learning. The books have conflicting advice, so I plan to try them all and see if any stick. It drives me nuts, because I can rationally know something, but still feel so anxious without being able to stop. Part of it is accepting uncertainty in life, being comfortable with risk tolerance. Anyway best of luck to others dealing with this, it is tough! For interview-type anxiety, I think putting it out of mind however you can is the best way, after doing whatever prep/follow up you can as well as possible.

  17. Thank you for this article. If I may add, there are also anxious moments just surfing the internet for positions that fit your qualifications. Therapy that has worked for me is to start the day washing dishes from the night before or just cleaning / organizing my apartment throughout the day. In other words, keep busy with things that do not pertain to your job hunt; it runs interference and takes away some of the stress and clears your mind. Hope this helps.

  18. Stephanie :

    As far as romance novel-ing goes, I would recommend to everyone – It’s a great, fun website for all of us J.D.s, MBAs, etc. who LOVE romances, but want smart sexy heroines and respectful accomplished heroes. No shame in the game ladies.

  19. I am in this place now. I had an interview yesterday and now the waiting to find out Is killing me. The interview went well I thought and they called my references so they must think I would be somewhat of a good fit. The waiting is cruel and unusual punishment lol

  20. I too am waiting to hear about an interview. The waiting is terrible. It is within the same organization but a different city. One person called me and said they heard I got the job. That was over two weeks ago and I still haven’t heard anything. I wish the waiting was over. I need to find a new place to live, pack , move and buy a car if I get this position. It is getting closer and closer to the holidays and winter. I am unhappy in my current position which makes it worse. I get caught in loops projecting that I do have the job, then I don’t have the job. Today I was so anxious, I was close to tears. I just want to know one way or the other so I can get on with my life.

    • Karen,
      Is it possible to follow up with the person that said they heard you go the job to see how they got that info? Or just follow up with the interviewers to ask about your application status? There are a lot of good resources out there to help you craft a job application status request emails.