Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Sex, Lies, and Handwriting

I first found YOUR HANDWRITING CAN CHANGE YOUR LIFEicon by Vimala Rogers, which was incredibly illuminating for me.*

I just finished reading SEX, LIES, and HANDWRITINGicon by Michelle Dresbold.


Handwriting can be incredibly revealing, not just to me about me as I found in Vimala Rogers' book, but, as Dresbold says, about others.

She is a handwriting analyst, and has been engaged in profiling criminals by their handwriting. In SEX, LIES, and HANDWRITINGicon, she uses real people's handwriting, both famous and infamous, to illustrate her points. Some of the people she names in her book have committed horrendous crimes (Jeffrey Dahmer, Timothy McVeigh), others are presidents and celebrities (Richard Nixon, Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Michael Jackson).

She describes how phallic symbols can indicate sexual frustration or obsession, as well as how some symbols that show up in handwriting can indicate a propensity to violence. How small, tight writing can indicate someone who doesn't like to interact with people and, conversely, how large handwriting can indicate someone who likes social interaction. She talks about legibility vs illegibility, how sometimes people write illegibly because they don't want others to see who they really are in their interpersonal relationships.

She also seems to agree with Vimala Rogers in that changing one's handwriting can change one's behavior or outlook. When Dresbold was studying handwriting herself, one of her teachers pointed out that the way she made her "p" - what the teacher described as a "pugilistic p", indicated that she could be argumentative and confrontational. As Michelle paid attention to her interactions, she realized that her teacher was right. She indeed found herself in situations where there were arguments and not much resolution. She decided to change the way she wrote the letter "p", and found that, over time, her interactions with others improved.

The last chapter of SEX, LIES, and HANDWRITINGicon included letters she received and responded to as a columnist called The Handwriting Doctor. People wrote her to ask if she could give insight into themselves or loved ones through their handwriting. Could Dresbold tell if someone's sister was anorexic? (yes) Would the man a woman was with be a good life partner? (no)

Handwriting can be an indication of how one is in the world. Changing one's handwriting, according to Dresbold and Rogers, can change one's outlook and presence in the world. In the last chapter, Dresbold urges some of the people who wrote her to change their behaviors, which would then result in different handwriting. I found it interesting that Rogers and Dresbold both recommend changing one's handwriting to change one's life, and that Dresbold recommends changing one's life which would also change one's handwriting, a reflection of one's life.

I find it quite fascinating, and am taking yet another look at my own handwriting. How's yours?

*See this post - one of my favorites - to see how handwriting may have changed my life:

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