Look into my sole

June 14, 2012 

You can't judge a book by its cover, but it turns out that you can judge a person by their shoes.

Psychologists at University of Kansas found that the value, style, color and condition of a person's shoes can tell you a lot about the owner's personality and emotional state. In tests, observers were able to guess around 90 percent of a wearer's personality traits.

So what do your shoes say about you? From The Daily Mail:

Expensive shoes suggest high earners, flash and colourful pairs belong to extroverts.

Shoes that may not be new but are immaculate belong to conscientious types.

Other clues are less obvious. Practical and functional shoes belong to agreeable people, ankle boots are worn by aggressive personalities and calm personalities wear uncomfortable looking shoes.

When I'm stuck at an event for long periods of time, waiting on interviews (I'm a reporter, it happens a lot), I'll pass the time by people-watching. This includes looking at other people's shoes.

What I've noticed? Leaders and executives stick with something conservative in black or brown. People that are on their feet a lot -- police officers, teachers -- go for comfort. Women in creative professions tend to have the prettiest, most interesting shoes, even if they aren't the most expensive-looking.

Whether or not you think the study has any merit, I think you can use some of its findings to your advantage. Want to move up on the career ladder? Don't wear scuffed up sneakers to the next meeting with your boss.

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