At work we write on computers, at home we type on laptops, at school we draft notes on tablets and while travelling we jot down memos on our mobile phones. Our agendas, journals, blogs, lists, comments, calendars, letters, messages and scribbles are all typed or tapped on some digital device.
Does this mean that the art of calligraphy, that is, handwriting, will eventually die out?
While typing on a computer is the same for everyone, handwriting is different and diverse, especially when it comes to cursive or joint writing. Some even maintain that a person’s handwriting can actually tell a lot about certain traits of their personality and character.
The study of handwriting in relation to psychological behaviour is called ‘graphology’ or ‘handwriting analysis.’
According to experts, handwriting is unconscious, which is why we may leave part of our identity as indicators in our writing. The practice of inferring someone’s traits, abilities or personality from their writing style has been the subject of study and fascination for years. It was first developed by the Chinese almost 3,000 years ago and even the Romans used it to try and identify the essence of the person producing the writing.
A person’s written script is created when the brain sends signals along the muscles to the writing implement currently available. As such, by examining a person’s handwriting, an expert graphologist would be able to identify certain features and provide an analysis.
Research carried out by the National Pen Company, USA, brought together a range of general graphology examples of the main and more important signifiers when it comes to the link between an individual’s handwriting to specific personal traits.
If you exert heavy pressure when writing, this shows depth of emotion. The harder you press, the more strongly you feel towards the subject you are writing about. This could also point out that the writer is someone who is good with commitment and reacts quickly to criticism. On the other hand, those who use light pressure when writing are sensitive and empathise strongly with others.
Size of Letters
If you have small handwriting, you have a good concentration span and possess the ability to focus on a particular goal. People with small handwriting are mostly technicians, scientists, accountants, writers and teachers. Creative or extravagant individuals usually have large handwriting.
If your writing slants forward (that is, to the right), this shows that you are an extrovert, open to new experiences, while if it slants backwards (to the left) you are an introvert who prefers to work behind the scenes. Vertical handwriting, where there is no slant, points towards people who control their emotions and are cautious with them.
Spacing between words
If you leave a wide space, this means that you enjoy your freedom and don’t like to be tied down, if, on the other hand, your words are written closely together, you most probably do not like to be alone.
Shape of letters
Rounded flowing letters usually point out creative and artistic traits in a person. Pointed letters suggest a more aggressive and intensive approach to life. Similarly, wide loops are usually adopted by relaxed and spontaneous-minded individuals, while narrow loops are used by those who have a more sceptical, forceful or strong character.
Graphology delves even more deeply when it comes to specific letters and it attributes particular traits to the way these are written. For example, those who scribble open ‘o’s’ are friendly and talkative persons, while those people whose ‘o’s’ are always closed are more private and introvert. Similarly, letters such as ‘t’s’, ‘i’s’ and ‘s’s’ are scrutinised by experts as well.
This is another important indicator of a person’s individuality. If the signature is clear and legible, the writer is normally confident, comfortable and straight forward. If, on the other hand, the signature is not legible, the person is most likely to be hard to read, difficult and reserved.
Graphology is most often considered a pseudoscience, that is, a practice which is not officially scientific, as it does not adhere to a valid and reliably tested method. It is, in fact, quite general and very vague. Nonetheless, since it is quite understandable that a person’s handwriting could hide subconscious tendencies, in certain fields it is still used as an indicator of a person’s personality and behaviour. It has been recognised as providing a possible clue for organisations to read an individual’s team-building processes, his/her personal traits in relation to others, as well as his/her decision-making strengths.
Have a closer look at your handwriting – what kind of a person do you think you are?