Breaking Bad Body Language

Management Monday: Body Language Management

TV Show Breaking Bad

Breaking Bad is one of the hottest shows on television right now. In fact, Ozymandias (the most recent episode) lit up social media conversations and hit Google’s top trends. Viewers can’t get enough of the desolation and desperation. The show is a shining example of creating empathy through body language. In ‘Breaking Bad’ Recap, ‘Confessions’: Going To Extremes, Maureen Ryan describes a scene “we knew how tense everyone at the table was, thanks to their stiff body language and grim expressions, and the perkiness of Trent the waiter highlighted how non-festive everyone was feeling.” But, capturing reaction through body language isn’t just an art for actors. It is equally important for business professionals.

Poor productivity, unmotivated employees — even lawsuits — can result from communication breakdowns at the office. A strong communicator might jump-start career advancement, while a poor communicator might lose a job. In When it comes to career advancement, body language counts, Holly Ellyatt of CNBC explains that “body language and nonverbal communication can have a big impact on your professional life and can ultimately make or break a deal.” From giving a client a poor first impression to losing your team’s attention at a meeting, non-verbal communication influences success every day on the job.

So how do the masters of body language like Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul of Breaking Bad pull it off? Simple, they know the tricks. Some basic rules outline how to generate positive or negative emotions within the process of communication, and these can be utilized to enforce intentions.

Body Language Mistakes to Avoid

1.      Bad posture sapping confidence

2.      Lack of hand gestures for engagement

3.      Gesturing from the elbow instead of shoulder

4.      Weak or overly forceful handshake

5.      Touching of face which conveys deceit

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6.      Overly low or high voice tonality and pitch

7.      Unconfident or overconfident clothing choices

8.      Rolling of eyes

9.      Not facing people whom you are speaking to

10.  Standing to the left of an acquaintance

11.  Touching of lips which conveys disagreement

12.  Intensely clutching pen or other office items, including ones own body

13.  Crossing arms over chest conveying vulnerability or defensiveness

14.  Not maintaining eye contact

15.  Forgetting to smile for positive synergy

Correcting these mistakes can be done through behavioral training, but the most important thing to remember is that it all goes back to attitude. Your body conveys your feelings, like it or not. Developing confidence and positive thinking skills is the most useful key to avoiding defensive body language and mishaps. Breaking bad body language is a choice, make it what you want it to be.


This Blog has been featured by the West Orange Chamber of Commerce. Sources such as HLN have also been home to publications by Dr. Farnaz Namin-Hedayati and she has been cited by the Orlando Business Journal.