Introverts live their lives in their comfort zones and weigh the different interactions against each other. If it’s not necessary, then there’s no need to get all dressed up and go out. However, there are some interactions that can’t be avoided and won’t fit into their neat little zone of comfort, like job interviews. As an introvert, looking for a job and doing interviews is going to take a lot out of you. It’s something you know you have to do especially if you want to eat and not feel like a failure. Accomplishing this isn’t that difficult, it’s been done before. It’s just writing and emailing your resume, waiting to be acknowledged, freaking out about your interview, not messing up your interview, wondering whether you should disclose your introversion, then more waiting and possibly getting rejected. Doesn’t that sound fun?
The unemployed introvert’s path has become somewhat easier when it comes to applying for jobs. Nowadays, you can just type out your resume and e-mail it. No need for awkward phone calls or talks with the receptionist. No verbal slip-ups, no nonverbal accidents like slapping yourself in the face or accidentally grabbing your boob. The resume is an important step because you are presenting your best qualifications for the job. Try to apply to places you feel fits with your personality as an introvert. As an introvert, you might want to avoid jobs where there’s lots of social interaction. However, if you’ve been unemployed for a very long time and desperately need to find a job, this becomes difficult. In this regard, still look for jobs or companies that you feel safe with. You do not want to put yourself in a vulnerable position or at a high risk for burnout.
You might not immediately get a reply or call back. Don’t let this get you down. Just keep sending applications and looking for vacancies. If you’re feeling disappointed or rejected, then that’s okay. But don’t spend large amounts of time wallowing in it. Try to take some initiative. If emails don’t work, then try to leave the comfort zone and make some calls or approach the receptionist. Do some networking because networking is a requirement, as sad as that may be. But you cannot stay in the comfort zone forever.
Landing the Interview
Congratulations, calm down and don’t panic. This is a good thing, remember you need a job. You applied to this company because some part of you believes you can do the job. It’s time to mentally prepare for the interview and psych yourself up. Life is a stage, look at the interview as a scene you have to act out. Prepare by watching some interview tips online or reading up on the company and the position you’ve applied for. Also, research the company’s location and how long it takes to get there. And try to be on time or a bit early. As much as half an hour before your scheduled interview. This will make a good impression with interviewers, but it will also give you some time to get comfortable with your surroundings and mentally prepare for the interview.
Make sure to dress presentably, but wear what makes you comfortable. This will help you stay calm. Do a bit of self-reflection. How anxious do you think you’re going to get during the interview? Do you think it’s something you can keep under control? If you know you tend to fidget when you’re nervous, try to be aware of that and keep it to a minimum. If you move your hands around a lot, shake your legs, or tap your feet, try to find a way to manage this by looking up tricks to manage fidgeting in a none visible way. Take your time answering questions but do not overshare. Give answers to the question they’re asking. There is no need to explain the relation between your e-mail name and transformers. Ask your own questions! What do they expect from you? Who will you be working with? Ask them what they love most about their job and the day-to-day responsibilities required of you. Employers will be impressed when they see you’ve done some research and that you’ve thought of some questions for them. You’ll stand out for sure!
Disclosing your introversion can be a risky move to make. especially if you want to make yourself look good in the eyes of employers. It might negatively affect your chances of getting hired. You might be seen as a weak candidate and the employer might not want to hire somebody like you. On the other hand, the employer might understand introversion and applaud you for identifying your weaknesses and strengths. Present your introversion as a strength and how it’ll be an advantage to your job. The employer’s response also tells you what kind of company you’d be working for. The company you work for is as important as getting employed. If only we lived in a world where we could afford to be that carefree. Just Keep in mind that being introverted is not a weakness. You just need more time to recharge when dealing with people and that’s okay.
Not getting the job isn’t the end of the world. Unless you’re incredibly broke and really do need that job then it could possibly be the end for you. But literally, though, the world isn’t going to end. The sun is going to come up tomorrow and set like it always does. At least for another few centuries till it blows up and kills all of us but don’t dwell on that. Go through the motions, pick yourself up and move forward with purpose. At some point, somebody IS going to hire you and you’re going to look back on your job seeking days with a sense of relief and dread because you definitely do not want to do it again.
These aren’t necessarily things only introverts deal with. Even extroverts get nervous about interviews. The difference is they have more energy and can be more engaging and participate in the interaction.
What are your experiences looking for work? Do you find it difficult to find work as an introvert? Let me know in the comments below!
Edited by Viveca Shearin