What Your Sitting Position Says About Your Personality

Humans spend the majority of their days sitting. Many people may not realize that the way they’re sitting gives a glimpse into their personality. The way you cross your legs or put your hands in your lap while sitting can say a lot about a person. Keep reading to see what your sitting position truly means.

Why Some People Spread Out While Sitting

a man sitting on a wall with legs spread out
Alex Ware/Unsplash
Alex Ware/Unsplash

It can sometimes be annoying sitting next to someone who spreads their legs out wide while sitting. When this position is analyzed, it usually comes off as chaotic.

These people tend to have trouble sitting still or concentrating on one thing at a time. They will likely speak before thinking about what they’re going to say, are easily bored, and love fast-paced environments.

Where You Choose To Sit Can Be A Clue To Your Personality

a girl sitting on a bench
Roland Hechanova/Unsplash
Roland Hechanova/Unsplash

If you’re given an empty bench, couch, or other seating area, it makes a difference where you sit. People who sit in the middle of these seats tend to be more confident.

Introverted or shy people may choose the side because they don’t want to be surrounded by others. The outgoing people who sit in the middle show that they are bold and can make friends easily.

Crossing Your Ankles Can Make You Seem Like Royalty

anne hathaway crossing her ankles in the princess diaries
Walt Disney Pictures/MovieStillsDB
Walt Disney Pictures/MovieStillsDB

One way to look a little more sophisticated while sitting is to cross your ankles. Someone who sits this way comes off as refined, elegant, and down-to-earth.

Since this position is a little more relaxed, it causes both yourself and those around you to feel comfortable. Some may notice that members of the royal family usually sit this way.

Show Some Flexibility By Sitting Cross-Legged

a man sitting cross-legged next to a chair
Jose Aljovin/Unsplash
Jose Aljovin/Unsplash

There’s a reason why people who practice yoga or meditation choose to sit in the cross-legged sitting position when they’re not practicing. Those who choose this style tend to be more open and carefree.

When people sit cross-legged with their knees out to each side, it can be interpreted as being open-minded and wanting to hear new ideas. Not only is this position physically flexible, but it’s emotionally flexible as well.

People Who Recline Are Very Observant

a man reclining in his seat
Ronnie George/Unsplash
Ronnie George/Unsplash

The world can be filled with a lot of external stimuli that can make it overwhelming. If you see someone sitting in a reclined position, it could mean they’re just trying to take it all in.

Recliners tend to be more analytical and would prefer to observe a situation, instead of acting out. These people are also very considerate and would likely be called empaths.

Why You May Clasp Your Hands In Your Lap

girl sitting with her hands clasped in her lap
Tim Mossholder/Unsplash
Tim Mossholder/Unsplash

Someone who tightly clasps their hands in their lap may come off as anxious, but there’s a lot more behind this sitting position.

It actually signals that someone is very passionate and emotional. People are naturally drawn to these types of individuals because of their high energy and zest for life. They’re also naturally trustworthy, warm, sweet, and funny.

Do You Clutch The Armrests? Here’s Why

a man sitting in a chair in the water
Yogendra Singh/Unsplash
Yogendra Singh/Unsplash

Armrests are there for support, which is why people who clutch them want both physical and emotional support. People who prefer to use the armrests are likely sensitive and want to keep an eye on their surroundings.

They may need some extra comfort and security in their life and the armrests are a symbol of that. Clutching armrests could also mean they are stable, grounded, and reliable.

People Who Sit Like This May Be Considered Type A

a man sitting with his legs crossed
Luis Aleman/Unsplash
Luis Aleman/Unsplash

If you’ve ever seen someone sitting with their legs crossed with non-stop shaking or bouncing, it could give off the vibe that they have a Type A personality.

This position can be interpreted as being organized, prompt, and reliable. These people tend to stay calm under pressure, always pay attention to detail, and are great at understanding others.

The Reason You Rest Your Hands In Your Lap

a girl resting her hands in her lap
Shinfe Studio/Unsplash
Shinfe Studio/Unsplash

Those who sit with their hands resting (not clasped together) in their lap most likely keep to themselves and love to put others first.

They rarely get upset and are able to stay in control of their emotions. Keeping your hands still in your lap could mean you’re humble, unassuming, compassionate, gentle, and easy to be around.

You Might Be Defensive If You Cross Your Arms

a girl crossing her arms
Priscilla Du Preez/Unsplash
Priscilla Du Preez/Unsplash

Someone who usually crosses their arms while they sit may seem unapproachable, but that’s not completely the case. These people are most likely strong, a little defensive, and confident.

They may also feel they need some protection or security and are essentially shielding their body from the rest of the world. Some other personality traits attributed to this sitting position include being thoughtful, serious, and analytical.

Caregivers Are Usually Kneeling

a woman kneeling on the ground
Priscilla Whendy/Unsplash
Priscilla Whendy/Unsplash

It’s not exactly easy to sit in a kneeling position and it usually goes with the qualities of being assertive and helpful.

Caregivers such as parents and grandparents perform the kneeling position frequently, so they can get eye level with their little ones. Also, people who regularly kneel are usually natural-born leaders, witty, and great problem solvers.

This Sitting Position Is Common In Creative People

a girl sitting on a chair at the beach
Chris Yang/Unsplash
Chris Yang/Unsplash

Someone who sits with their knees together and their feet facing towards each other are usually creative and charismatic. They would be considered a Type B personality that loves spontaneity.

While these people can usually find themselves in trouble, they’re quick thinkers who know how to get out of it. This sitting position represents popularity, adventure, and friendliness.

People Who Cross Their Legs Live In Their Heads

a woman crossing her legs
Jonathan Sanchez/Unsplash
Jonathan Sanchez/Unsplash

If you find yourself crossing your legs and not moving them, it’s likely that you have a big imagination. You’re someone who often gets lost in your daydreams and is great at storytelling.

Some common traits with this sitting position include empathy, good at making eye contact, and great listening skills. Also, you know yourself very well.

Be A Little Flirty In The Sidesaddle Position

a girl sitting sidesaddle
Ussama Azam/Unsplash
Ussama Azam/Unsplash

Someone who sits with their knees to the side is in the sidesaddle position. This can be interpreted as being delicate, caring, or sweet.

The sidesaddle is also a bit flirtatious and can send signals to another person that you’re interested in them. Sitting with your knees and chest pointed out towards your partner signals this interest even further.

The Truth About Folding Your Hands In Your Lap

a girl folding her hands in her lap
Hao Pan/Unsplash
Hao Pan/Unsplash

One of the easiest ways to decode someone’s personality is to check if they fold their hands in their lap while they sit. We already discussed clasped hands, but someone who folds their hands together in their lap regularly tends to be calm, kind, and peaceful.

These people are pretty introverted and love their alone time, but are also very passionate about the world and those who live on it. They may not say much, but when they speak be sure to listen.

The Benefits Of Sitting With Straight Legs

a girl sitting outside
Abbat/Unsplash
Abbat/Unsplash

Smart, rational, punctual, neat, and orderly are all ways to describe someone who sits with their legs straight and feet flat on the floor.

While these people tend to be more reserved, they love to talk openly and honestly about themselves when given the chance. They’re also the best person to go to in a crisis because they know how to remain calm.

How To Tell If You Have Good Posture

a man sitting with his back straight
Yoga Journal/Pinterest
Yoga Journal/Pinterest

Most people are usually told to have good posture when they sit, which typically includes a straight, erect back. Someone who has good posture tends to be more confident, strong, reliable, caring, and trustworthy.

While these people are some of the most responsible, they also love to have a good time and enjoy the little things in life.

This Sitting Position Represents A Goal-Oriented Person

five different sitting positions in an illustration
Darla Compton/Pinterest
Darla Compton/Pinterest

One of the more refined ways of sitting is keeping your legs together and tilted to the side. Those who prefer this position are usually very goal-oriented and want to focus on their careers.

You might call them a perfectionist in categories such as appearance, relationships, and health, which can cause them to miss some of life’s most precious moments.

Always Take Breaks From Sitting

a woman walking in an office
Daria Pimkina/Unsplash
Daria Pimkina/Unsplash

It’s important that people who spend most of their day sitting take breaks throughout the day. Sitting for long periods of time can reduce blood flow and cause muscle fatigue.

Take a break by getting up and moving around to get your blood flowing. Shorter breaks such as a one to two-minute break every 30 minutes are better than longer breaks a couple of times per day.

Give Your Back Enough Support

studio-republic-fotKKqWNMQ4-unsplash
Unsplash/Studio Republic
Unsplash/Studio Republic

One of the best ways to make sure your back gets enough support while you are sitting is to use an ergonomic chair. These are designed to reduce stress and friction on your bones and muscles as you sit.

If you don’t have enough money for one of these fancy chairs, rolling up a towel or getting a small pillow and placing it on your lower back will work just fine.

Think About Investing In A Headset

a man talking into a headset
Fausto Sandoval/Unsplash
Fausto Sandoval/Unsplash

If you find yourself straining to look at your phone, it may be worth it to get a headset.

When people bend their necks to do this, it can cause stiff muscles, pain, and ligament damage that can gradually get worse over time. If a headset isn’t in your budget, try opting for hands-free options such as using speakerphone.

Look At Your Chair’s Settings

a man sitting in an office chair
Jonathan Borba/Unsplash
Jonathan Borba/Unsplash

One of the reasons why you may be feeling pain after sitting for a long time could be that your chair’s settings are messed up.

Your arms and legs should be parallel with the ground and your knees should be even with your hips. Also, your feet should be resting on the floor or under a stool and your arms should curve into an L-shape.

Try Not To Reach Too Far To Get Something

a woman typing on a laptop
Avel Chuklanov/Unsplash
Avel Chuklanov/Unsplash

It’s important that everything you frequently use while sitting, such as a phone, keyboard, mouse, and water bottle, are within arms reach.

According to Healthline, when people stretch too much while sitting, they can strain their muscles. If someone is doing this multiple times every day, it can lead to severe joint pain.

The Right Way To Sit

a couple of men sitting in an office
Tim van der Kuip/Unsplash
Tim van der Kuip/Unsplash

While there are dozens of different sitting positions, there is one that is recommended by experts. Healthline states that people should sit with their feet firmly on the floor with their body weight evenly distributed at the hips.

Also, your knees should be bent at a right angle and people should avoid wearing heels. Never sit with your legs crossed because it can reduce blood flow and cause muscle strain.

Office Workers Should Know This

a person working at a desk
XPS/Unsplash
XPS/Unsplash

It can be easy to neglect how to properly use your mouse while working on the computer. Your mouse is supposed to be on the same surface as your keyboard with easy reach.

Remember to keep your wrist straight while using the mouse with your upper arms at your sides and your hands below your elbows.

This Will Make Typing Easier

a woman typing on a laptop
Christin Hume/Unsplash
Christin Hume/Unsplash

According to Healthline, your keyboard should be directly in front of your monitor. There should be about four to six inches from the bottom of your keyboard to the edge of your desk, so you aren’t straining your wrists.

Some keyboards come in different heights, so if you feel your wrists getting tired, try a padded wrist rest.

Your Screens Should Be At Eye Level

people working on computers in an office
Arlington Research/Unsplash
Arlington Research/Unsplash

In order to prevent any kind of strain in your neck and eyes, it’s important to keep your phone, tablet, and computer screens at eye level.

These should be about an arm’s length away with no more than two inches above or below your eye level. If your monitor isn’t tall enough, you can try stacking it on top of books or a box.

These Sleepers May Be Yearning For Something

yearning-log-74885
Damir Spanic/Unsplash
Damir Spanic/Unsplash

Dr. Idzikowski describes the yearning log sleeping position as someone who sleeps on their side, but stretches their arms out in front of them. Someone who chooses to sleep this way may be a little more open and trusting than most.

While this person probably isn’t too gullible in their life, they may be very indecisive. Luckily, once they make up their mind, they usually stick to their opinion. Also, side sleeping is great for digestion and can reduce snoring.

Sleeping On The Left Side Of The Bed Helps With Heartburn

left-31652
Toa Heftiba/Unsplash
Toa Heftiba/Unsplash

A survey from Sealy found that left-side sleeping is preferred by people in marketing and advertising, people between the ages of 45 and 54, and people with college degrees.

If you experience any painful heartburn symptoms, sleeping on the left side of the bed may help. “The reason for this is because when you sleep on your right side, the lower esophageal sphincter relaxes, allowing stomach acid to leak out, which can result in irritation,” said SleepScore Labs Advisory Board Member Michael Breus, MD.

Tips For Side Sleepers

side-sleeping-62902
Bruce Mars/Unsplash
Bruce Mars/Unsplash

While there are many ways to sleep on your side, there are certain things to do while sleeping that can optimize your comfort and health. Chiropractic expert Dr. Robin has a few suggestions.

Those who sleep in the fetal position shouldn’t put their knees all the way up to their chest. It’s helpful to keep a small pillow between your knees to keep your spine aligned. Also, try hugging a pillow between your arms to keep them outstretched. This opens up your chest, lungs, and other airways.

The Benefits Of Sleeping On The Right Side Of The Bed

right-93181
Somnox Sleep/Unsplash
Somnox Sleep/Unsplash

While sleeping on the left side of the bed can help with heartburn, sleeping on the right side can actually be beneficial to your heart health. Nazma Parveen, MBBS, explained that sleeping on the right side of the bed doesn’t cause your heart to experience any gravitational pressure.

A survey from Sealy found that people who sleep on the right side of the bed tend to work in transport or manufacturing, are between the ages of 35 and 44, and drink a lot of caffeinated beverages per day.

Sleeping On Your Stomach Isn’t Ideal

stomach-40645
Vladislav Muslakov/Unsplash
Vladislav Muslakov/Unsplash

There are a lot of things that can go wrong for people who sleep on their stomachs. It can obstruct airways for people with sleep apnea and chronic snoring and puts stress on the lower back and neck.

Sleeping on your stomach can cause your spine to realign, which can give you chronic pain during the day. Dr. Idzikowski says someone who sleeps face down on their stomach tends to be gregarious, yet brash. They also don’t like to be criticized and avoid dangerous situations.

Younger People Tend To Sleep On Their Back

back-51613
Tania Mousinho/Unsplash
Tania Mousinho/Unsplash

A research study done by Sealy found that people who slept on their backs tended to be between the ages of 25 and 34 and worked in transport or logistics. Those who sleep on their backs will wake up more refreshed, but it can also cause them to snore more.

“When you’re lying on your back, your throat is more narrow, making snoring louder and more frequent,” said SleepScore’s Dr. Breus. Those who choose to sleep on their back should place a pillow behind their knees to support the spine and reduce back pain.

Sleeping In The Fetal Position Is Common

fetal-position-19122
Steven Mileham/Flickr
Steven Mileham/Flickr

In Britain, professor and sleep expert Chris Idzikowski surveyed nearly 1,000 volunteers to determine if there was any correlation between sleep positions and personality. His research allowed him to uncover some commonalities between subjects.

First, Idzikowski found that the fetal position is the most common sleep position, especially for women. Someone who sleeps in the fetal position may have a shy and sensitive personality. The position might also give someone a sense of safety, especially if they are lacking it in real life.

Sleepy Soldiers Are Shy And Reserved

sleepy-soldier-31497
Ciaoo/Facebook
Ciaoo/Facebook

Someone who sleeps in the sleepy soldier position will lay flat on their back with their arms straight down at their side, which looks like a soldier standing at attention.

The personality traits of someone who sleeps as a sleepy soldier tend to be quiet, reserved, focused, and independent. These are people who love structure, might take themselves too seriously, and have high expectations for themselves and those around them. According to Psycom, about 11 percent of Americans sleep this way.

Why The Shooting Star Is So Unique

shooting-star-65335
Kinga Cichewicz/Unsplash
Kinga Cichewicz/Unsplash

The shooting star or starfish sleeping position is one of the most unique choices. This is when someone sleeps on their back with their legs stretched out and their arms are stretched above their head.

Men are more commonly found in this position and the personality traits associated with it are selfless, giving, supportive, and a good listener. Shooting star people are very loyal and make their relationships and friendships a top priority in their lives.

The Skydiver Isn’t What It Seems

skydiver-16281
Kinga Cichewicz/Unsplash
Kinga Cichewicz/Unsplash

Someone who sleeps in the skydiver, prone, or freefaller position will lay on their stomach with their head to the side and have their arms wrapped around a pillow. According to the BSC, this position is the most common with Gen X and millennials.

Nectar Sleep explained that a skydiver sleeper will be open, playful, and fun on the outside, but may be anxious and controlling on the inside. Also, these people aren’t afraid to take risks.

The Most Common Sleeping Position For Couples

back-to-back-far-apart-93319
Divya Kamasutra/Facebook
Divya Kamasutra/Facebook

The most common sleeping position for couples is a bit misleading. While it might not seem romantic, most couples will sleep back-to-back and far apart. This position is called liberty lovers.

Corrine Sweet, a relationship psychologist, found that this position means a couple is connected and secure in their relationship. About 27 percent of couples sleep this way each night. Healthline said this is actually a good position for both partners because it can relieve pressure on internal organs.

Spooning Is A Classic

spooning-25853
Hope Maine/Pinterest
Hope Maine/Pinterest

Spooning is usually one of the most popular sleeping positions among couples. About 18 percent of those surveyed said they regularly spoon. While this is a romantic position, it also includes a power dynamic within the relationship.

One person will be the “big spoon” and give a sideways hug to the “little spoon” with both parties sleeping on their sides. The upsides to spooning are that it’s better for breathing and can relieve aches and pains.

Why Couples Do Back-To-Back Touching

back-to-back-sleeping-76046
Nectar
Nectar

Corrine Sweet, a relationship psychologist, conducted a survey among couples to find their most common sleeping positions and back-to-back touching came in second. This is when couples are facing away from each other, but their backs are touching.

“Both partners are relaxed and comfortable with one another – this is often common in new relationships,” said Sweet. Since this is a form of side sleeping, couples have reported feeling less joint pain in the morning.

This Position Is Two-In-One

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Unsplash/Becca Tapert
Unsplash/Becca Tapert

Psychologist Corrine Sweet found that about eight percent of couples sleep in the unraveling knot position. This is when the couples begin intertwined and after about 10 minutes, each person will sleep in the position of their choosing.

“It’s a compromise between intimacy and independence, allowing for the best of both worlds,” said Sweet. According to Healthline, couples who sleep in this position have likely been together for a long time and feel more secure in their relationship.

Couples Should Avoid This Position

couple-sleeping-57495
Damir Spanic/Unsplash
Damir Spanic/Unsplash

A partnership should be equal and even a sleeping position can reveal a struggling power dynamic. For example, one partner may be sprawled across the bed and the other is tucked into a corner with little room.

“One partner dominates the space, while the other takes a secondary role,” said relationship psychologist Corrine Sweet. Even though it might not seem like much, this is a huge sign of power disparity between a couple and should be addressed early on.

The Cradle Position Is Filled With Passion

cradle-71367
Thought Catalog/Unsplash
Thought Catalog/Unsplash

When someone refers to a couple who’s in the “honeymoon phase,” it wouldn’t be uncommon to see them sleeping in the cradle or nuzzle position. This occurs when one person lays flat on their back and the other will rest their head on their partner’s chest.

It’s also common for the couple to be wrapping their arms and legs around each other while sleeping. This position is most popular with both new and rekindled relationships, but only four percent of couples actually sleep like this every night.

Some People Change Up Their Sleeping Position

freestyle-40694
Diply/Pinterest
Diply/Pinterest

While some people are true back, side, or stomach sleepers, others will often change up their sleeping position depending on their comfort level. A survey from Sealy explained that these “freestyle” sleepers commonly work in utilities and are between the ages of 35 and 44.

Almost everyone will change up their sleeping position throughout their lives, so it’s completely normal. People will move about 50 to 80 times throughout the night in order to wake up refreshed, move their muscles, and give their body nutrients and hormones.

Easy-Going People Will Sleep Like This

log-position-90251
Men’s Health/Pinterest
Men’s Health/Pinterest

Professor and sleep expert Chris Idzikowski found that people who were more social, outgoing, and trusting of strangers tended to be side sleepers. These kinds of sleepers keep their arms down at their sides as well.

Dr. Idzikowski also mentioned that side sleepers tend to be a bit more gullible. People who sleep in this log position tend to not experience numbness, but the BBC discovered that only about six percent of the world’s population prefer this method.

The Tangle Position Can Be Overwhelming

tangle-85298
Toa Heftiba/Unsplash
Toa Heftiba/Unsplash

One of the most intense couples’ positions is the tangle. While this is quite rare, it is usually seen at the beginning of new relationships. It would look like two people hugging each other very tight while laying on their sides.

Also, legs are usually intertwined. This position has a lot of meaning behind it. The tangle usually translates to a couple who is very codependent and feels the need to both physically and mentally stay attached to their partner.