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These boots are meant for walking…

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Researchers at the University of Kansas found that people can judge a stranger's important personality traits just by looking at their shoes. Kipp does some sole- searching to find out if its true.

June 18, 2012 6:07 by



They say you must never judge a man before walking a mile in his shoes, but researchers at the University of Kansas say you may, by all means, judge his political affiliation, emotional stability, social status, skills and his ability to buy new shoes.

If that did not sound inane enough, there’s more. The study, published online in the August 2012 edition of the Journal of Research in Personality revealed that practical and functional shoes generally belong to agreeable people, ankle boots fit with more aggressive personalities and uncomfortable looking shoes were worn by calm personalities.

Now we know for a fact that a woman who occasionally wears high-heeled, uncomfortable shoes can be described as fashionable or glamorous but calm? We wouldn’t jump to that conclusion too soon, given that that those merciless shoe bites and ankle strain make for frequent, painful and less-than-calm situations. Also, it doesn’t take a Sherlock Holmes to deduce that practical shoes are worn by, well, practical people who may not necessarily be considered pleasant or agreeable. Ankle boots were the bane of 90s’ fashion, so we’d rather gift the unfortunate fashion victim, a copy of the latest issue of Vogue than investigate her aggression problem.
The study also declares that people with “attachment anxiety” or people that were most worried about their relationships generally had brand new and well-kept shoes, suggesting that this may be because they worry so much about their appearance and what others may think of them. Moreover, the study says volunteers who had ‘boring shoes’ described themselves as aloof and repressive in their emotions and do not care what others think of them so they do not stand out in their general appearance.

We’d love to ask the researchers what exactly they considered ‘boring shoes’. Apart from being extremely superficial and one-dimensional, the study dangerously borders on idiocy. We did end up taking a long hard look at our own shoes and realized that if we had to believe the research, we’d be labeled a bunch of emotionally scarred, sad and anxious people, given to a fate of perpetual loneliness. Ouch!



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