Writing an exam and facing an interview is not the same thing, especially when managing the stress and anxiety that follows the exam. You might be intelligent and hardworking enough to cope with the civil service exam. However, to crack the IAS interview, you need to gain some practical and theoretical knowledge.
Most often, it has been noticed that candidates, however knowledgeable they are, pass out or get anxiety attacks right before the IAS interview or during the IAS interview preparation. If you sweat profusely during an IAS mock interview or feel extremely nervous while answering the questions, or pass out, know that you need to follow some strategies to deal with the pressure and tension built up in you.
Before we get into the tips of managing stress, it is essential to determine why this nervousness is built up in IAS candidates.
Why do UPSC aspirants become anxious before UPSC interviews?
First and foremost, when you are in a challenging situation where your skills are tested, you are sure to feel tense. This is a natural reaction to the high-stake situation. Similarly, the UPSC interview or the personality round is a win-or-lose situation that all civil aspirants must pass through to get into a secured civil service they had been eyeing for so long.
You have been dreaming of achieving civil service for so long. So, naturally, you believe that one wrong step, a somewhat wrong answer from your side, will destroy your life. Several candidates take three-four years to make it to the UPSC interview round. As a result, they believe that the UPSC interview round is their final step of proving their worth. The UPSC candidates tend to get nervous from these tense thought processes.
Another most significant reason for getting nervous is the presence of the board members. The candidates think that the board members will be critical about their appearance. Also, they believe that the questions will be asked to them in such a twisted manner that they will fail to grasp them. As a result, you become nervous and tend to answer wrongly. Even if you know that correct answer, you fail to reply well.
Tips for managing stress before UPSC interview
Now that you can relate to the causes that lead to the stress and anxiety you face right before the IAS interview, here are some tips to help you deal with this stress.
- Avoiding electronic media
Before the IAS interview, it is better that you avoid distractions as much as possible. One of the most significant sources of distractions is electronic media. It can be television or social media, or your phones. Do not log in to your social media accounts while waiting for your call. Instead, use this time to collect yourself, calm down, and stay poised.
- Breathing exercise
Stress and anxiety are among the most potent problems that many IAS candidates face. If you have to cope with the stress and carry on with your preparation, you have to do some breathing exercises early in the morning. If you are not okay with breathing exercises, meditation will also work. The breathing exercises or meditation will lower your heart rate.
- Portraying the right image
As an IAS aspirant, do not consider the panelists to be fools. On the contrary, they are skilled and capable enough to understand the personalities of the IAS candidates. Hence, if you try to present yourself as someone different, you will fall into trouble. Such kind of deceit will not be accepted.
Reaching the interview venue at the right time is something you need to keep in mind. It is better to reach the venue 30 minutes before than 30 minutes late. Therefore, start from your home early. Calculate the time wasted on the road due to traffic and start from your home accordingly.
- Voice clarity
When you are nervous, it affects your voice too. You have to appear confident enough to impress the board members in the UPSC interview round. A shaky voice is not a mark of confidence and strength.
Therefore, you must practice strategies to manage stress while preparing for the UPSC exam. If you have to crack the civil service exam, you have to be fearful enough to face the hardships that come your way.