A couple of months ago I had an interview. I hate interviews. I don’t know anyone who likes them. Who willingly likes to be judged based on your look, your resume, your work experience, and your ability to lie in front of them? NOBODY! If you enjoy this ridicule, I’m convinced you are a sociopath or on a reality tv show. *side eye* Unfortunately, interviewing is necessary if you need/want a job or a better opportunity. Personally, I wish that someone would just walk up to me and say “Hey, you are awesome. Here’s a made-up newly created job for you.” But I don’t have enough money or influence for that yet.
I am extremely particular in the type of position that I’m applying and interviewing for. I have a “laundry list” of wants and needs that I don’t think anybody will be able to fulfill for me. Like…I don’t need to be micromanaged. I’m not trying to work hard, only smart. I am not trying to be anyone’s manager or secretary. I don’t want to clock in. I need to make a 6-figure salary. I need my own office with a window…alone time is a must. And, I only want to work half days on Friday. Oh yeah, and I work better alone so minimal teamwork. Those are just a few requests in my new job. It looks like I should be a stay-at-home mother… with no kids at home and no housework to do.
The job hunt is so complicated. Sometimes, I wonder if I really need a new job…but my bank account and my lifestyle are like, yes girl.
Interviewing as an introvert is equally as complicated. Below are some strategies that have helped me along the way.
- Befriend caffeine. Because it’s often too early for liquor, I settled for super caffeine…i.e. espresso. I love a great caramel frappe with espresso. Espresso gives me superpowers. It slows my erratic brain down and helps me to focus. In the moments that I have an espresso high, my anxiety and worry are lower because my brain and thoughts are more streamlined. My new friend gives me more confidence because I’m not overthinking. She breaks me out of my shell so that I can talk more. Espresso, like most liquor, gives me liquid courage.
- Call my alter ego. Beyonce has Sasha Fierce, I have Robyn Breland. You may ask, how can your real name be your alter ego? Well, a lot of people call me Rob or Bre and my married last name. However, only childhood and collegiate friends call me by my full maiden name. Back in my youth, I was ambitious and headstrong. I had vision and drive. I was bold, more extroverted, and a positively naive woman that wanted to take her over the world. When I interview, I have to tap into the woman who confidently thought she’d be making 6 figures by 30. That young dreamer doesn’t surface much because life and reality holds her back. But, when she shows up, she is powerful.
- Play the game. I’m not sure if I have mentioned this before, *Sarcasm* but I hate small talk. I sometimes seem standoffish… Purposely. I know that I have a resting bitch face…also purposely. I put all of that aside because I know it’s about playing the game. In real life, if we were in a hallway, I’ll smile and not speak to you again until I have to. But, in an interview setting, you never know who may be the one making the decision on your future, so I greet and small talk with everyone. *Cues irrelevant convo about the weather* I don’t think that this is being fake. It is understanding that friendly, more extroverted people make others comfortable. Quiet, more introverted people make others leery. Although I’m naturally quiet, I have to step out of my comfort and give them (the interviewer) what they want.
Until some awesome person hands me a job with all of the aforementioned requirements, I guess I will keep coping and caffeinating, and faking it ’til I make it.