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How To Handle New Job Jitters

How To Handle New Job Jitters

By Cheryl Stein
Monster Contributing Writer

Starting a new job can be absolutely terrifying. We wonder if we will succeed, if people will like us, and if we were properly trained. We wonder if we will get fired, if we will make friends, if we will have an impact and if we will make a difference. The strangest thing about all this worry is that we keep it inside. We don’t tell anyone that we doubt ourselves.

The reason why we do this is that we think that we are the only ones in the history of the world who have ever felt the way that we are feeling. We invest in all kinds of strategies to convince others that we are nothing but confidant. We pretend to know things that we don’t, we pretend to have done things that we haven’t ever done and we try with all our might to speak with absolute certainty and conviction.

I am here to tell you that you are not alone.

Almost everyone who cares about doing a good job has had these same feelings that you are feeling. What few of us realize is that everyone who has ever worked anywhere has started work on their first day. That means that the day before their first day of work, they were just as nervous as you and were just as eager to do a good job.

Did you ever stop to think that even CEO’s of major companies get nervous when they start a new job?

And I bet you that you can probably find millions of people who have gone to work with the worry that someone was going to catch them doing a job that should have gone to someone else. The way that you are feeling is totally normal.

Being nervous about how well you will do is actually a healthy thing. Our nervousness gives us the energy to do our best and to learn as much as we can to do our jobs well. Think about it, if you didn’t care so much, how hard would you try to impress people by learning and doing quickly?

Here are some tips to deal with being nervous:

  • Try and remember other times in your life when you have started something new. Past success can be a great way to remind yourself of what you are capable of.
  • Give yourself a pep talk. Talking to yourself about how normal your feelings are is a great way prepare for success.
  • Look around you and picture everyone in the organization on their first day. If you remind yourself that everyone has been in your shoes then you won’t feel quite so badly.
  • Tell yourself that nervous energy is good energy. Using the feeling of being nervous to propel yourself forward is a great way to deal with these difficult feelings.

It is okay to take some time to learn a new job. Give yourself a break if you don’t know everything right away. All jobs have a learning curve and take time to master.

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