If you want to get to know someone better, take a quick look at something they’ve written on paper by hand. Graphology, or the art of analyzing someone’s personality through their handwriting, dates back centuries. Read on if you’re curious to see if your character matches what a handwriting analyst would have to say about you.

1. MESSY HANDWRITING: YOU’RE GIFTED

If your script has been compared to chicken-scratch, take it as a compliment. Many influential artists and thinkers throughout history were known to have borderline-illegible handwriting. Research suggests that this may be a result of the writer’s brain producing thoughts faster than the hand can transcribe them.

2. SPACED OUT WORDS: YOU NEED ROOM TO BREATHE

It’s not hard to see the psychological significance of leaving wide buffers between your words. People with roomy handwriting may tend to prefer working in open spaces over confined rooms, according to one certified handwriting analyst. If your writing falls on the cramped side, that may indicate that you feel most comfortable when you’re around people.

3. FANCY I DOTS: YOU’RE CREATIVE

The most noticeable way to show a little personality through your handwriting is by replacing the boring dots over your i’s with something flashier. A handwriting analyst says that dotting your i’s with hearts, flowers, or even open circles indicates creativity. Using a regular dot, on the other hand, is a marker of loyalty, while dotting your i’s inconsistently or not at all could mean you lack attention to detail.

4. BIG LETTERS: YOU HAVE A BIG PERSONALITY

The size of your handwriting may be a projection of your personality. Big letters that spill outside the lines of a page could mean that you’re an outgoing, friendly person who likes to be around other people. It may also suggest that you’re craving attention. If your handwriting is smaller, a handwriting analyst might say that you’re introverted.

5. LOOPY LETTERS: YOU’RE EMOTIONAL

Those graceful loops you sneak into every letter of your writing don’t just look pretty—they may also reveal something about the type of person you are. According to a handwriting analyst, loopy, curly handwriting is a sign of someone who’s in touch with their emotions and sympathetic toward other people. It could also mean that you follow your intuition.

6. HEAVY PRESSURE: YOU’RE TENSE

Do you bear down on the page every time you jot down a note? It could be a sign that you’re tense and penning in some repressed anger. Slightly softer pen strokes indicate commitment, while writing that’s so light you can barely read the ink could mean you’re sensitive and lack energy.

7. ILLEGIBLE SIGNATURE: YOU’RE HARD TO READ

To you, the illegible signature you scribble on your credit card receipts just means that you’re in a hurry—but a handwriting analyst might take it to mean something bigger. Messy signatures are tied to private or inscrutable personalities, while a signature that’s much clearer and neater might come from someone who’s more confident and open.

Every time you put pen to paper, you help broadcast your personality to the world. It’s just one of the incredible things paper can help you do. Learn more at howlifeunfolds.com/productivity.

Sources: Smithsonian, Mental Floss, Buzzfeed, Pens.com, Real Simple, Business Insider, Bustle, Reader's Digest, Fast Company, University Times.