Three things that I did during my interview that I believe were very helpful and the key to being a good interviewer was first and most importantly listening attentively. Listening attentively is both helpful and polite. Being an active listener helped me to make a better evaluation of my partner’s story. Good listening skills allowed me to connect with my partner and let her know that I was engaged and cared what she had to say.
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Secondly, I had a warming attitude. I wanted my partner to feel comfortable to really express herself without holding back. To do this, I had to set a comfortable atmosphere. Being warming and welcoming was helpful because this is what helped my partner to not be too nervous and openly talk to me. Having a warm friendly tone of voice is welcoming and this lets the person you are interviewing know that he/she is in a safe space to talk with you free off anxiety and judgment.
Lastly, I demonstrated good body language. If you’re engaged in conversation not only do you speak verbally but your body talks as well. Good body language while interviewing my partner was important to me and was helpful because once again it showed I was listening, that I cared what she had to say. Sitting up straight, being mindful of facial expressions, arms uncrossed and not having my phone in hand were ways I displayed good body language. This was both helpful and important because had I had my phone in my hands texting or checking my phone it would convey me as being uninterested or disengaged. Being mindful of my facial expressions and knowing when to smile or just to nod also helped during my interview because I did not want my partner to think I’m judging them in any way. Sometimes when we are unaware of our facial expressions and body language we can offend people unintentionally. Another way I showed good body language was my eye contact. Good eye contact was another way of me showing my partner I was listening attentively. Looking down or not meeting my partners gaze could have once again given off a vibe that I was bored or not paying attention.
Having good conversational skills, listening more than I talked, and asking follow-up questions for more detailed answers/ evaluation were some of the few skills and strengths I brought to the interview as well as the stated above.
All the feedback that I received from my partner was positive. After the interview she let me know what she thought was good about how I conducted myself. My partner had said that she liked that I wasn’t judgmental and felt free to express herself regardless of her upbringing. She told me that I articulated myself well while asking questions. My partner also noted me being a good listener by my body language and follow-up questions and responses.
When it was my turn to be interviewed I was anxious but also eager. I feel like the anxiety came from a place of wanting to articulate my reasoning well. Despite the slight feelings of anxiety I was very eager to share why I am so passionate about becoming a CYC. While hearing myself talk in such great depth about my reasoning for wanting to be a CYC reassured me that I was on the right career path.
Through my reasons, I learned that a lot of my motivation for wanting to be a CYC comes from personal experience with CYC’s. Having encounters with many child and youth care workers as an adolescence is how I knew from the age of 15 that I wanted to work in the field. Dealing with mental health issues at such a young age is what made me not want any child to feel alone or to feel unsupported the way I did at times before I received help from child and youth care workers. Without the positive role that the child and youth care workers played in my life, I wouldn’t be where I am today. Looking back on how determined they were to help me to get better, and how they never gave up on me is more than touching to me. I feel as though it’s my duty and my purpose on this earth to share that uplifting feeling I felt as a child with other children and youth. That feeling of support and that there is always hope for a better tomorrow.
Another thing I’ve learned through my reasons for wanting to be a CYC is the importance of really being committed to the relations we build with children and youth. During my interview, I stated personal attributes and strengths that will contribute to me being an excellent CYC. One of those attributes/ strengths were that I am committed to tasks I take on. Anyone can finish school and become a CYC to work in the field, however not all workers in the field are committed to the role they play. When dealing with children and youth you have to be committed to really stick through the ups and the downs of working with different cases. As a CYC you may have a person who is defiant or disengaging and many of those people get given up on because they are “difficult” or unwilling to receive help. The CYC may internally give up and not really commit themselves to build that relationship with the child. In my eyes when I see a child being defiant or giving a hard time, I see a person who is crying out for help or to be loved. I see a person who needs a positively influential CYC to commit to helping them have the best possible growth and development. Commitment to the role of being a CYC is so important because a lot of these children have been given up on by people in their life and the last thing we’d want to do is contribute to that. We have to give them our full devotion. I believe this is one of the deep needs that a child needs to feel while in your care. That you’re on their team and committed to their needs as well as best interest.
Lastly, I’ve learned from my interview responses is that being a CYC isn’t just about loving kids and wanting to work with them. Being a CYC is a part of who you are it isn’t just a job. While I was explaining to my partner why I had a great desire to be a CYC, I expressed why I felt like it was in my nature to fulfill the role of being an effective CYC. Being a CYC is my sole purpose in life because of the traits I possess, and the self-fulfillment I feel within myself knowing I’m making a positive change in a child’s life. When I was younger and to this very day I have always been a sensitive and empathetic person. Being an empathetic person is someone who has the ability to be highly attuned to not only their emotions but the emotions of others. People who are empathetic are affected by other people’s energies and moods. Having this trait can sometimes be extremely draining to be able to empathize so much with people to the point where it feels like I am in that person’s shoes. Some people may think that this makes me overly sensitive, or that I am taking on the problems of others. I believe that being an empathetic person gives me the ability to really connect with people especially children. I embrace this trait and feel as though it’s a gift to be able to care so deeply for others some of which I don’t know on a personal level. This is the core trait within myself that wants to help children and youth. My empathy will allow them to genuinely feel the connection that I really care about them, and know how they feel. Creating these healthy therapeutic relations with children, helping those who can’t help themselves, and who have no voice has never felt like a job to me it’s always been a deeply rooted purpose.
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