Much like life, interviewing has its ups and downs; some interviews leave you feeling on top of the world and others make you wonder why you got out of bed that morning. It’s okay to have those hopeless feelings, but don’t let them paralyze you from taking action. Worse yet, don’t allow yourself to get bogged down with negative thoughts that can be a hit to your self-esteem. You are more than one, not so great interview, so instead of wallowing, do something good for yourself: assess your accomplishments.
We aren’t talking a quick mental pat on the back, but a pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) ready to make lists, attitude. Think about who you are, where you are, and how you got there. Don’t limit this activity to your work life, open it up to your whole life. You’ve accomplished things that you have never given yourself credit for and now is the time to recognize those things. Why you ask? Because even the most resilient person needs a reminder now and again of why being turned down for a job does not define his/her success in life. You are the authority on you, but every expert occasionally needs a refresher in his subject of expertise. So devote a few hours to yourself and work through these questions:
- How did you do a job better than anyone else did?
- How have your unique abilities improved a situation or made someone’s life or job easier?
- What have you developed, created, or built?
- What kinds of awards or recognition has your industry given you?
- How have you succeeded because of your willingness to take risks?
- List some instances in which you’ve refused to quit despite hardships.
- How have you learned from your mistakes?
- What are some examples of ways you’ve made a comeback?
- What accomplishment best illustrates your ability to facilitate change?
- Give an example of how your commitment to your work has motivated you to exceed expectations.
- List examples of times when you forced yourself out of your comfort zone and the results of each.
- List situations in which you displayed initiative.
- How has each of your employers benefited from your work?
- Have you received thank-you notes from customers or clients – did you save them? Have you read them lately?
- Have you acted as mentor to someone?
- What are you most known for?
- What do you want to be known for?
If you have done a full accounting of your successes and are able to bring them to each interview, you will know you gave the experience everything you had. If you receive an offer, great, if not, that’s okay too; you will carry with you a true understanding of everything you have to offer the next company.