Monday, October 2, 2023

Body Language Analysis №4720: Alina Habba in the Courtroom - Nonverbal and Emotional Intelligence


This is Alina Habba in the courtroom today. Although we cannot see him here, her client Donald Trump, is seated immediately to her right. Beyond these basic facts, we don’t know who is speaking or what is being said in this moment.

However, we can discern Alina Habba’s thought-emotions being displayed here.

Note the extreme backward-tilting of Habba’s head-neck. Moreover, she’s tilted to her left-side — further distancing herself from the person at whom she’s looking.

The camera angle here makes it less obvious, yet we can still clearly see her nose is elevated (contracted upward).

In contrast, the same camera angle magnifies the flaring of Habba’s already quite-flared nostrils. The tissue above her upper lip and below her nose is tightened.

SUMMARY: Alina Habba’s body language, captured this morning in this courtroom moment, indicates her thought-emotions of strong:

• Arrogance
• Condescension
• Disgust

While displaying these emotions may temporarily give a person feelings of superiority and an evanescent false sense of ‘winning’ — with the exception of Donald Trump, there’s no one in this courtroom with whom this expression will build rapport.

On the contrary, it will further alienate the judge. In this moment, Habba is working against her client. This display is also self-destructive — not only by increasing Trump’s punishment, but also by diminishing her mental focus and moving her mind further from her emotional baseline.

All individuals, organizations, and businesses who want to (need to) nuance their understanding of Emotional Intelligence and dramatically improve their Body Language skills — please email me at:


This post and others accompanying it, serve as a reference source for the art and science of Body Language/Nonverbal Communication. The views and opinions expressed on this website are those of the author. In an effort to be both practical and academic, many examples from/of varied cultures, politicians, professional athletes, legal cases, public figures, etc., are cited in order to teach and illustrate both the interpretation of others’ body language as well as the projection of one’s own nonverbal skills in many different contexts.