Breaking Bad: Walter White Psychology Free Writing Sample

Breaking Bad depicts a man who is projected to die soon due to a terminal illness. This illness causes Walter to live life on the edge and try to set his family up financially for life after him. In the popular television series, Walter who starts as a chemistry high school teacher and is well known for he is well-mannered exhibits this kind of condition as he tries his best to maintain and sustain his family. Every step that one takes in life, results in rewards and punishments. According to nature, individuals are forced to live according to the consequences of the behaviors and actions they chose. In this case, they are forced to learn from the consequences. This concept was termed an operational conditioning disorder. In this paper, I will explore the symptoms, causes, lifestyle impacts, and treatments of operant conditioning through the main character Walter White, in the show Breaking Bad.

Due to his desire for power and stability in financials, Walter starts cooking and selling methamphetamine. The thrill drives him more which in turn makes him want to take more control and addicted to gaining more power. He aims to get more money and he starts getting involved in activities that are dangerous and harmful. He starts to commit murder and uses manipulation strategies to gain more. This pushes him into becoming a drug dealer and he starts distributing drugs in society, thus illustrating Walter’s operant conditioning disorder. Although receiving much money and control over society was positive according to Walter, there were also negative results that accompanied the situation. His desires overpower his morals and ethics as he is involved in murder, and also he gets addicted to methamphetamine. To maintain the kind of power he holds, Walter is involved in heinous activities which he is ready to terminate and destroy whatever comes in between his desires. His behavior later turns out to be violent and with time it increases to an extent where everybody around him is afraid to cross his paths. He also suffers from cancer which in most cases, is known to be a chronic condition and most of the time leads to death. The trajectory Walter chose, was dangerous and later led to his destruction. He has to suffer for the path he chose to lead. He was too much addicted to the rewards he received from the activities forgetting what mattered most in his life.

Since Walter appears to be addicted to his crime life, there is a clear illustration that he suffers from operant conditioning disorder as indicated by the film Breaking Bad. According to psychologists, individuals suffering from operant conditioning disorder, have difficulties in controlling themselves and they only care about what they receive forgetting the rule of nature. They tend to neglect the order of things and they might later involve in activities that are dangerous and can bring harm. They crave activities that can make them get and attain their desires. For instance, as illustrated in Breaking Bad, Walter’s desire to rise high in societal status pushes him in involving in activities that are more dangerous and bring him harm. For instance, throughout the series, Walter is obsessed and addicted to his criminal activities and he even pushes his family away. He prioritizes his drug dealing business an indication that he cannot control his emotions and behaviors in relationship with his surroundings. He fails to resist the temptation to do all evils to attain his desires. He neglects his family to get hold of a high position and control over everything. According to researchers, individuals who exhibit difficulties in controlling their emotions, are at one time in their lives suffering from addictions. Walter is addicted to methamphetamine, thus engaging in all dangerous activities to fill the emptiness that comes along with addiction.

Breaking Bad is an excellent example of an illustration of one suffering from operant conditioning disorder. Due to the fact that Walter developed cancer and was looking for a way that he can sustain and maintain his family, he started using and producing methamphetamine which later resulted in him being a drug lord in the society. At first, Walter was afraid of his actions but due to the rewards and benefits he collected from his activities, he was encouraged to continue. Despite being a high school chemistry teacher who was respected and knew that dealing with drugs was dangerous, he was enticed to the activities without giving it a thought. To understand his behaviors, psychologists advise him to use psychological concepts and understand why he chose to follow the trajectory. Being that he was in a very critical situation that needed family support and their presence. One of the most used concepts by psychologists and can be applied in the film is Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Walter’s decision to use and produce methamphetamine was based on his need to be stable and take care, maintain, and sustain his family. Walter believed that it was only through financial success that he would gain that all. Although family provision was his main aim when he started the activities, it is also evident that the aim changed in between and the desire to gain control and more power gave him the thrill to continue with the activities. He was even ready to get rid of whatever came across to hinder the success.

Secondly, cognitive dissonance theory is another concept that can be applied and used in the film. As a respected former teacher and family man, Walter uses the situation to convince himself that he is only involved in the activities due to them. On the central, being that he is educated, he is aware of all the ethics and morals. However, he chooses to oppose them and move according to his conviction. He believes that whatever action he is taking, he is doing it for the future of his family which contradicts the ethics and morals of being a father and a teacher. Despite all the values and attributes that he taught his students, the conviction drives him into getting in deeply into the activities forgetting the ethics and ethos of his occupation. Initially, everybody in society would term Walter as a respectable family man who cared for and maintained his family. However, the situation later changes as the only respect he received only came because he was powerful and dangerous. This is against the rule of nature as respect is only supposed to be granted to those who deserved it.

In conclusion, operant conditioning disorder is psychological and most individuals find themselves suffering from it. In most cases, they are forced to make decisions based on the benefits and consequences of their activities. Breaking Bad a popular television series is a good example that can be used to exhibit the condition and how the activities the character is involved in shaping his path. Walter’s increasing desire to continue with the criminal activities is triggered and encouraged by the financial success and power he receives from them. However, despite that there are positive outcomes that are recorded from his behavior and activities, he is negatively affected as he loses his family and is open to emotional distress as there is nobody to cater to him and physical harm. Nevertheless, this does not stop him from heinous activities as he only concentrates on what he gains. In addition, operant conditioning disorder leads to behaviors that are not easily broken. Instead, individuals suffering from this condition always find themselves wanting more thus getting involved in more dangerous activities. Therefore, it is the responsibility of each individual to take a look and learn to control their emotions. They should not lose track of their morals and neglect ethics just because they focus only on rewards for the paths they chose ring them.


Gilligan, V. (Director). (2008). Breaking Bad (Motion Picture). AMC.

Perrotta, G. (2019). Tic disorder: definition, clinical contexts, differential diagnosis, neural correlates and therapeutic approaches. J Neurosci Rehab2019, 1-6.

Coming Of Age In “Araby” And “A&P”: The Role Of Imagery In The Transition From Innocence To Experience. Sample Assignment

The short stories “Araby” by James Joyce and “A&P” by John Updike extensively examine maturing and adulthood. The psychological and emotional changes that the characters experience during this transformation are illustrated by both authors using images. In “Araby,” Joyce contrasts light and darkness to express the narrator’s disillusionment with the world. In contrast, Updike employs the difference between the girls’ attractiveness and the impersonal character of the store to represent Sammy’s sexual awakening in “A&P” (Dalisay & Jose 5). The use of religious imagery by both authors emphasizes the shared experience of maturing and coming to terms with adult reality. The authors expertly depict the transition from youth to experience to highlight the difficulties associated with developing and coping with the harsh realities of the outside world.

In “Araby” and “A&P,” James Joyce and John Updike use vivid imagery to show the protagonists’ transition from youth to experience. The sensory nuances reveal the characters’ feelings and show how their viewpoints change. In “Araby,” the young man’s crush on Mangan’s sister is portrayed through his desolate surroundings and romanticized perception of the bazaar, which ultimately results in disappointment (Dalisay & Jose 94-101). In “A&P,” Sammy’s sexual awakening is highlighted by the girls’ natural attractiveness in contrast to the impersonal store setting, which finally causes him to become aware of the difficulties he will confront as an adult.

Imagery is utilized by authors in “Araby” by James Joyce and “A&P” by John Updike to show how youth protagonists change from innocence to experience. Joyce contrasts dark and light when describing the narrator’s despair over the state of the world in “Araby”. On the other hand, Updike combines the women’s sensuality and the business’s impersonality nature to represent Sammy’s developing consciousness in “A&P.” In both stories, the authors emphasize the passage from youth to experience by utilizing imagery and animal imagery (Porter 123). Both authors skillfully use psychological and emotional changes to describe the changes young protagonists go through during transition. Both tales look at different challenges of growing from childhood to adulthood—additionally, the moving reflection of the social norms and expectations that shape the young protagonist’s lives.

The author uses imagery to allow a detailed description of the psychological and emotional changes that young characters go through in these novels. The reader’s comprehension of the transition from innocence to experience is aided by the juxtaposition between dark and light, animal imagery, and religious symbols like the girls and bazaar in “A&P” and “Araby,” respectively (Porter 131). We can learn more about how the authors portray the challenges of growing up and dealing with adult realities by looking at the imagery’s function in these stories.

In James Joyce’s “Araby,” imagery involving light and darkness represents the narrator’s transition from youth to experience. The story is set in a foreboding neighbourhood to highlight how mundane the narrator’s life is. His house is characterized as “musty from having been long enclosed,” implying a sense of stagnation and seclusion (Joyce 151). The story’s only light source is the bazaar, which the narrator intends to attend to buy a present for his crush. The bazaar is a metaphor for the promise of something fresh and exciting, different from the narrator’s everyday life. Nevertheless, when he does arrive at the bazaar, (Joyce 155) notes that it is “dark” and “deserted,” illustrating the narrator’s disillusionment with the world around him. The narrator’s illusions are dispelled, and he is thrust into the adult world by the darkness of the bazaar, which serves as a metaphor for the gloom of reality.

Similar imagery highlights the contrast between brightness and darkness in John Updike’s “A&P,” emphasizing Sammy’s transformation from youth to experience. The fluorescent lighting in the store where Sammy works draws attention to how antiseptic his workplace is. The girls, on the other hand, are “radiant” and “plastered with makeup” when they enter (Updike 3). The light coming from the females represents a fresh experience outside of the sterile confines of the establishment. The contrast between the girls’ light and the store’s darkness highlights Sammy’s increasing understanding of the world outside his small village. Sammy is ready to experience a different life that the girls represent.

The contrast between innocence and experience is represented through the usage of light and darkness in both of the stories. While the light symbolizes the hope of something fresh and exciting, the night represents the routine and confinement of the characters’ lives before their journey (Dalisay & Jose 97). The protagonists’ illusions are dispelled by the darkness of reality when they arrive at their destination and discover that the world is not what they had anticipated. Joyce and Updike emphasize the universal experience of growing from childhood into adulthood and the challenge of balancing one’s dreams with the harsh reality of the outside world through light and darkness imagery. In both tales, the passage from innocence to experience is significantly aided by the employment of religious imagery. According to the narrator of “Araby,” the market is a “devotional” setting, and the subject of his passion is a “chalice” (Joyce 152). These religious allusions imply that the narrator’s obsession with the girl is more than just a fleeting whim; it represents a spiritual awakening.

In “A&P,” Sammy’s use of religious iconography highlights his transformation from youth to experience. He frames himself as a guardian and rescuer by seeing himself as a “shepherd,” playing a messianic role in defending the girls from the critical gaze of the other shoppers. When Sammy starts to recognize himself as a character in a larger story that extends beyond the everyday world of the store, it suggests a spiritual awakening on his part. As Sammy becomes aware of the harsh judgments and prejudices of the world around him and must decide how to deal with this new reality, it also emphasizes his disillusionment with society. Ultimately, religious imagery in “A&P” highlights the emotional and psychological difficulties associated with maturing and facing adult realities.

In “A&P,” Sammy’s perception of the females also changes over time from “chicks” to “honey bunnies” to “queens,” reflecting an increasing awareness and appreciation of their uniqueness and humanity (Updike 3–4). Sammy’s journey from ignorance to understanding, as he learns to look beyond his desires and appreciate the intricacy of the world around him, is mirrored by this movement from animal to human imagery. The use of animal imagery in both stories highlights the intuitive, primitive nature of desire and the protagonist’s ultimate realization of the complexity of adult life. This metaphor also powerfully describes the young people’s transition from childhood to adulthood.

The characteristics of “A&P” and “Araby” are emphasized through animal imagery as they change from impressionable to knowing. In “Araby”, the author talks of how his heart is “fluttering” like a bird, conjuring an innate, uncontrollable need that he is only beginning to understand. His condition is high lightened by references to “wild imaginings,” and “white horses”, which imply that his urges are unrestrained and primal (Joyce 151–152). However, as the story progresses, the narrator’s beliefs are questioned, and he has a more seasoned and realistic perspective on the world. This shift can be seen in the use of religious imagery, such as the “fallen fruit” and “darkness” he finds, as well as a decrease in the use of animal imagery (Joyce 152-153).

Updike in “A&P”, the same way he expresses Sammy’s evolving sexuality through animal imagery. In the same way that Updike does in “A&P,” he says Sammy’s developing sexuality through animal imagery. He initially refers to the girls as “chicks,” making them into nothing more than mere sexual objects (Marvell et al. 77). Nevertheless, as his attraction to them grows, he elevates them to the status of “honey bunnies” and “queens,” showing that he is beginning to see them as distinct people (Updike 3–4). Sammy’s increasing maturity and understanding of the complexity of interpersonal relationships are demonstrated by this movement from animal to human imagery. In both pieces, imagery shows the progression from innocence to experience (Dalisay & Jose 155). Joyce and Updike skillfully portray the protagonists’ developing understanding of their environment’s complexity through light and darkness, religious symbolism, and animal imagery. They also emphasize the difficulties and sadness that result from that realization, as the characters understand that things are more complicated than they had previously thought.

James Joyce’s “Araby” and John Updike’s “A&P” are both stories that depict the journey of young boys from innocence to experience. In both levels, imagery is crucial in conveying this transition (Porter 77). The imagery of light and darkness is used in both stories to symbolize the narrator’s growing disillusionment with the world around them. The usage of religious symbolism in “Araby” further emphasizes the narrator’s search for meaning and purpose. Using animal imagery describes the increasing awareness of the protagonist’s appetites and sexuality.

Both stories’ imagery demonstrates a more in-depth exploration of themes concerning disillusionment and coming-of-age. In addition, both tales make observations about how young people experience difficulties transitioning from childhood to adulthood. Updike and Joyce encourage readers to reflect on adolescents’ phycological and complex emotional growth through imagery (Dalisay & Jose 77). In “Araby,” the harsh facts of the world around the narrator demolish his romantic, idealistic worldview. In “A&P,” Sammy’s defiance of social conventions finally leads to his despair. Both tales serve as compelling illustrations of how young people struggle to deal with the complexity of adult life and the crucial role that imagery plays in communicating these experiences. Generally speaking, imagery is essential in sharing the concepts of “Araby” and “A&P” and providing insights into the human experience.

In conclusion, James Joyce’s “Araby” and John Updike’s “A&P” effectively convey the idea of the transition from innocence to experience through vivid imagery. To illustrate the protagonists’ emotional and psychological changes, both novels’ authors use religious imagery, animal imagery, and contrasts between light and darkness. The reader’s grasp of the character’s journey from their ordinary lives to something novel and odd is aided by the picture (Dalisay & Jose 88). These tales provide an insightful analysis of growing pains, emphasizing the challenges of transitioning to adult reality and the social expectations that shape young people’s lives. It is simpler to see how the authors represent the universal human experience of growing up and coping with the complexities of adult life by examining the function of imagery in both novels.

Work Cited.

Dalisay, Jose Y. The Knowing is in the Writing: Notes on the Practice of Fiction. UP Press, 2006.

Levitt, Morton P., ed. Joyce and the Joyceans. Syracuse University Press, 2002.

McFarland, Ronald E. “Updike and the Critics: Reflections on” A&P”.” Studies in Short Fiction 20.2 (1983): 95.

Porter, M. Gilbert. “John Updike’s” A&P”: The Establishment and an Emersonian Cashier.” The English Journal 61.8 (1972): 1155-1158.

UPDIKE, JOHN. “métier, and his ability to use its compressed structure to generate intensity and to.” Critical Survey of Short Fiction: Sil-Wol 6 (1993): 2332.

Conflict In Relationships Sample Essay

Conflict refers to a difference of opinion or a collision between two or more people or organizations who have opposing beliefs, objectives, interests, or values. Friendships, familial bonds, romantic partnerships, and commercial partnerships are examples of real-world interactions. Divergent views, attitudes, expectations, and goals are common causes of conflict.

Conflict-related emotions and feelings are common in real-world relationships as well. During disagreements, people frequently feel powerful emotions including anger, frustration, hurt, and resentment. Finding a solution to the problem and communicating clearly can be challenging while one is experiencing these feelings.

Power dynamics and influence often cause real-world disagreements. People often use their power to get what they want, which can lead to a power conflict that makes things worse (Westad, 2019). When individuals or groups possess varying degrees of influence or power, they may take advantage of this to advance their agendas or further their aims, possibly at the expense of others. This may lead to conflicts and power struggles when those with more influence or clout may rule over or manipulate others with less influence or clout (Van Baalen, 2021). The disagreement may intensify and get worse if the weaker party pushes back or resists.

Relationships in the real world can be significantly impacted by disagreements. Conflicts that go unresolved can cause a breakdown in communication and trust, which over time can be detrimental to the partnership. Therefore, it’s critical to develop effective conflict management skills and discover a solution that benefits both parties.

Approaches used by individuals or organizations to resolve or lessen conflicts are known as conflict management tactics. Collaboration, compromise, avoidance, accommodation, rivalry, mediation, and arbitration are a few typical tactics. Using active listening techniques is one approach to handling problems in relationships successfully. To verify that you have understood the other person’s position accurately, active listening requires paying attention to what they are saying, seeking clarification, and paraphrasing. You can better grasp the other person’s viewpoint by actively listening, which can assist you in resolving the issue.

Using “I” statements rather than “you” statements while talking is another strategy for handling problems in real-world relationships. Making “I” statements entails expressing your feelings without pointing the finger or criticizing the other person. Saying “You never listen to me,” for instance, may be replaced with “I get frustrated when I don’t feel heard.” This strategy can assist in defusing the situation and motivate the other party to hear your side of the story.

In addition, it’s critical to recognize and communicate sentiments and emotions when there is disagreement in interpersonal relationships. Negative feelings and unresolved issues brought on by ignoring or stifling emotions might eventually destroy the relationship. But it’s also crucial to express emotions and feelings respectfully and constructively that doesn’t make things worse.

Recognizing how interdependence and goals affect conflicts in real-world relationships is also essential. Interdependence is how much a couple relies on each other to succeed. From fully reliant to completely independent. Conflict arises when individuals have different goals or when their goals conflict with each other (Young, 2020). To reach a compromise that lets both sides achieve their top priorities, each side must define and rank its goals. Only then can a solution satisfy both parties.

I will end by saying that disagreement is a typical and natural part of human interactions. Effective conflict management is necessary to keep relationships in the real world joyful and healthy. Understanding the nature of conflict, acknowledging and expressing emotions and feelings, understanding power and influence, using effective communication skills, and taking into account the impact of interdependence and goals are all necessary for effective conflict management in real-world relationships (Hodson, 2020). By learning and employing these skills, people can settle issues respectfully and beneficially which fosters a greater comprehension and appreciation of one another.


Hodson, D. (2020). Going beyond STS education: Building a curriculum for sociopolitical activism. Canadian Journal of Science, Mathematics and Technology Education20, 592-622.

Van Baalen, S. (2021). Local elites, civil resistance, and the responsiveness of rebel governance in Côte d’Ivoire. Journal of Peace Research58(5), 930-944.

Westad, O. A. (2019). The sources of Chinese conduct. Foreign Affairs98(5), 86-95.

Young, I. M. (2020). Together in Difference: Transforming the Logic of Group Political Conflict 1. In Undoing Place? (pp. 332-342). Routledge.