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Old 09-24-2013, 05:33 PM   #1  
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Default Eeep! Stressing out!

So a few weeks back I applied for a job within a company that I really want to work for. It's a company I can retire with, and at 29 years old, I am looking to settle into a job that I can work with long-term. The job itself is not my favorite, it's call center work, but getting my foot in the door with the company should hopefully open up other opportunities so I may not always be a phone rep.

Yesterday I had a testing session with them, where they basically see if you meet their standard needs (there was a data entry test, math, analyzing, proofreading, and a call scenario test, etc.). I got the email today that I successfully passed all those tests, and they would like to schedule me for an interview.

Insert anxiety here!

I wore my nicest outfit I had yesterday, which was a pair of black dress slacks, a deep red cowl neck sweater (it didn't dip low, and I kept accessories to just a tasteful necklace), and a pair of ankle boots with a small heel. Out of the three people that tested, I was definitely the best dressed (one girl showed up in black and white polka-dotted leggings and a flimsy button down shirt over a dirty camisole....Not a good first impression, IMO).

My problem is that I don't know if what I have to wear is appropriate for this interview!! The job is customer service over the phone, and from what I could see from the people walking in and out of the building, the wardrobe of most people tended towards the very casual (jeans and a hoodie sweatshirt) to business casual.

I don't own a suit, and whenever I try them on I feel I look uncomfortable (and that's because I am). My arms are disproportionately bigger than the rest of me, so where I may wear a size 14 in pants, I'd need to go to the 18 or even 20 for the jacket so my arms will fit, and then the rest of it is too big! I also am not a fan of dresses, and look equally uncomfortable in those.

I know there was a thread on here about interviewing, and there were some people who said that they frequently interviewed people, is there a general guideline I should follow? I always thought that a business-casual type outfit was okay as long as you were clean, conservative, and there is nothing too loud or flashy with it (like black slacks, nice top, light make-up, etc). But my soon-to-be sister-in-law, who worksi n the building (albeit a different department where she would be required to wear more business-like attire), says that I should go and get a suit for the interview.

I just don't want to spend money on something that I won't be comfortable in I also don't want to go to an interview and be uncomfortable in how I look, either! That will just tear through any confidence I have mustered up, and the last thing I want is to seem flustered or nervous (even though I'm sure they already know I'm nervous as all heck lol!).

Another issue I have right now is my diet. My anxiety is so high, I'm either finding myself just grabbing something to eat from the fridge without weighing/measuring, or just not eating at all. When I got the notification about the testing, I was good on my diet until Saturday, where I really didn't eat much. same with Sunday. I ended up ordering Chinese food on Sunday, and I could only eat a small bit. I wasn't so nervous about the testing because I knew I could handle most of it, and the nerves only kicked in a couple days before.

With the interview, I don't even have a scheduled day yet and my anxiety is through the roof. I know it will be next week sometime, and I don't like the idea of feeling like this for an entire week! I don't sleep well, my eating patterns are all thrown off, I don't want to do anything else...I literally will just sit on the couch and stress about it because I can't seem to get my mind off of it! I tried exercising, cooking, cleaning, gaming, reading...nothing seemed to help get my mind off it.

I know stress can cause either overeating or undereating, and I feel like I experience both of those. Most of the time my stomach is in knots and I don't want to eat anything, then all at once I'll be starving and I'll eat something I probably shouldn't (a pint of Ben & Jerrys, pancakes fried in butter flavored crisco cause it gives it those tasty crispy edges, a huge bowl of chicken and dumplings, etc). I suppose I could take a page from Intuitive Eating and just be mindful of what I'm doing, and estimating my caloric intake and just monitor my fluctuations as I've always done, but I'm just worried with it being so much time if it will be harder to get back on track with counting.

UGH!!! So much to think about I thought that if I'd get an interview I'd be happy, but instead all I have is this gut-twisting anxiety that is eating me up! A part of me wishes I could get the interview tomorrow, then I remember about my outfits and I'm like "nope, definitely next week" lol! It's such a conundrum, wanting time to move faster, then slower haha!!
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Old 09-24-2013, 05:44 PM   #2  
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What you have already sounds like its very professional and appropriate. They always say dress for the job you want - I dressed in black slacks and a half-blazer with a cute camisole for the job I currently have at an Advertising Agency, and most of the time everyone here wears jeans unless we're meeting with clients. It never hurts to be overdressed, but you need to be comfortable in your own skin or that'll come across in an interview.
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Old 09-24-2013, 05:47 PM   #3  
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i think you dressed just fine for the testing and could probably wear something similar to the interview...i know what it's like to worry yourself silly over something because believe me, i have!!....what i found worked for me personally was to do everything that i COULD, and then just let it be...decide on an interview outfit, practice some interview answers, or whatever you think would help for an interview, and then the rest is out of your hands, so let it out of your mind it's taken me YEARS to practice what i preach LOL but for me personally, it does can only give your all, and the rest is up to - insert whoever - (the people hiring you, Higher Spirit, God, the company, whoever)

i also find that when i'm worried or stressed is when i do the best house cleaning
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Old 09-26-2013, 03:16 PM   #4  
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That's great that you got called back, good for you! Way to go!

It sounds like you dressed very nicely, that is important and it sounds like you nailed it! If you need another outfit, some stores like Ross, TJ Maxx or Marshall's may have nice clothes to fit a budget. I like a lot of the discount stores, they can have great buys. I think a pant suit or if you don't want to get a jacket, maybe a button down, collared blouse or pretty, conservative blouse is good.

When I was studying for my Associate's, we were required to take a course preparing us for jobs, even with a mock interview. I wore a simple suit and my professor told the class that I nailed the mock interview! I think I did because I dressed well, was polite and respectful and took a few deep breaths to try to relax. I was myself, and I felt good! I was nervous at times but I tried to do the best that I could and it worked.

My advice is just to be yourself, and keep shining!

You will do great!!
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Old 09-26-2013, 03:43 PM   #5  
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You'll make a bad impression if you're uncomfortable in your clothes, so unless you have the time and the money to tailor a suit to your needs, skip it. I believe that what you've described sounds fine. It's better to be confident and well dressed than let the clothes wear you.
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Old 09-26-2013, 04:00 PM   #6  
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I interview people all the time and I think black slacks and a nice top is fine. Dressing in a suit for a call center position seems like you might be overdressed.
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Old 09-26-2013, 04:10 PM   #7  
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I'm with Underwater – I've interviewed and hired many people over the years, and what you described wearing for your initial test sounds great. Overdressing can be just as awkward as underdressing, in many ways.

Best of luck - I hope it works out the way you want to.
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Old 09-26-2013, 05:02 PM   #8  
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Good luck!
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Old 09-26-2013, 05:29 PM   #9  
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Thanks everyone!!!

After getting over the initial jitters of "OMG I just got an interview...CRAP what am I going to wear?!", I calmed down and decided that I will use the same pants that I wore for the testing (black, wider-legged dress pants), and take my 20% off coupon for Kohl's and go find a nice top to wear, and maybe a nice piece of jewelry to go with it. You are all correct, it's definitely better to be comfortable and confident!

Now if only the HR person would answer my callbacks We keep playing phone tag...I keep missing her calls (I swear she calls only when I don't have my phone like when I'm taking the dogs outside, or in the bathroom, etc), and I've called her back numerous times (leaving only one voicemail each day I tried), and she's never answered her phone.

Thanks for all the support, I really appreciate it!
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Old 09-26-2013, 10:04 PM   #10  
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It's great that the HR person is calling you, I hear you on missing calls and playing phone tag, it can be so frustrating. Did she give you a business card with an email address on it by any chance or can you ask her for an email address? I personally find that can be a good way to contact people who are hard to reach.

I wish you all the best with this, it sounds like you are doing great with it!

Take care,

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Old 10-15-2013, 05:55 PM   #11  
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I just wanted to give an update on this

The interiew had gone really well!! At the end, the one lady who interviewed me said the first thing she wrote down was "great smile", so I was really happy about that! While the interview was behavioral, I had a lot of previous work history in the same field to draw upon for answers, so I felt really comfortable. Definitely felt like a wonderful place to work where people get along great and act almost like a family.

After two weeks of waiting, I finally got the call this morning that they are going to offer me the position, and I just have to wait until HR contacts me again to discuss the details On top of that, I just learned that my soon-to-be sister-in-law and her husband had an offer accepted on a house, so the house they are currently renting will become available in January-ish, and they are going to talk to the landlord to see if we can just jump right in when he's ready to rent it out! Yay no more 700sq ft apartment, hello 4-bedroom house with hardwood floors and fenced backyard!!!!!!

I'm not a religious person, but I have to say that right now I feel truly blessed. It seriously feels like this weight has been lifted off my shoulders, a weight I didn't even realize was there. Everything seems to be falling into place, I almost want to pinch myself to make sure I'm not dreaming lol!!
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Old 10-15-2013, 09:52 PM   #12  
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congrats!!! on everything you sound like a sweet person and you deserve being blessed with all good things happening now
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Old 10-15-2013, 10:07 PM   #13  
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Congratulations! It sounds like good things are in your future! I am very happy for you!
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Old 10-16-2013, 08:48 AM   #14  
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Congratualtions! It's wonderful when everything seems to magically fall into place!
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Old 10-16-2013, 10:54 AM   #15  
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I just read your follow up......congratulations.......

I was going to say, I would check Goodwill/ second hand for a suit jacket separate that fits and would go with what you already own. Does not have to be matchy matchy. Get a neutral color that you can wear with other things.

You will be great and no worries. Prepare well and practise confidence. Practise speaking out loud and have a good inner dialog.

Good luck.

Last edited by dstalksalot; 10-16-2013 at 11:18 AM.
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