Does Your Sleeping Position Reveal Your Personality?

Research in the United Kingdom (and in other countries for comparison and verification) has been able to correlate sleeping positions with one’s overall personality traits. How accurate? Well, you can judge for yourself by reading about some of the findings and seeing if they describe you or yours.

Let’s start with dogs. Dog trainers say that a dog that sleeps on its back with its legs up, when it’s sleeping with you, its owner, is displaying trust and a feeling of being loved. However, I’ve never experienced that with any pooch I’ve owned, and I spoil the heck out of them and dote all over them. Anyway…

How about people? A study analyzing six common sleeping positions, including the fetal position and the “log” (lying on your side with both arms parallel to your torso and legs), found that each position is actually linked to a particular personality type.

Take the fetal position: Sleeping in this way reportedly indicates that you’re tough on the outside but soft on the inside. And actually, this is the most common sleeping position, used by 41 percent of the people surveyed (but by women twice as much as men).

Now, if you sleep in the log position, you should head for Hollywood (talent questions aside). This position indicates that you’re easygoing, sociable and want to run with the A-list people (thus my Hollywood reference, but D.C. would work as well, or New York, and so on).

If you sleep on your back with both arms above you cradling the pillow (not a good position for snoring, though), you make a good friend and are a good listener. For the record, this position is called the “starfish” position.

However, your sleeping position (as with the “starfish” above) might actually have the opposite effect if it leads to snoring and/or to sleep deprivation.

According to sleep specialist Chris Idzikowski, PhD, a director of the Sleep Assessment and Advisory Service in London and the author of several books on sleep including Learn to Sleep Well, “If you sleep in a bad position, you’re more likely to be grumpy the next day.”

Wait, it gets worse (or better if you recognize the symptoms and seek help).

“With regard to personality, everybody knows that one of the first consequences of sleep deprivation is impaired sustained attention and irritability,” says Mark W. Mahowald, MD, director of the Minnesota Regional Sleep Disorders Center at Hennepin County Medical Center and professor of neurology at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. “Just about any degree of sleep deprivation will result in irritability and has far-reaching ramifications in the workplace, family, classroom, and behind the wheel.”

Yikes, but if you frequent this blog, you’ve heard this before. If you fall into the sleep-deprivation category, it might be time to ditch the caffeine and energy drinks and examine the base cause. Might also be time for a sleep evaluation to see if there’s a problem that can be treated. After all, you owe it to yourself to function at peak energy and grey-matter power, to say nothing of avoiding grumpiness. Seek out a sleep professional, such as those found at The Snoring Center, today.

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