— -- Your desk is actually a window into your personality, according to Sam Gosling, a personality researcher at the University of Texas/Austin.
"The first thing to understand is that every single element, every item, got here somehow," Gosling said. "What is missing tells you just as much."
Gosling said identity claims, behavior residue, and thought and feeling regulators could be used to dissect a person's personality:
A self-directed identity claim is a deliberate statement by a person to express his/her personality. For example, Gosling said, an American flag mouse pad expresses a person's patriotism.
Some actions leave a trace in the environment. Gosling says if your desk is neat or cluttered, it may say: "I'm trying to have some organization," or "I feel too busy to put things back in order."
Thought and Feeling Regulators
Thought and feeling regulators help people feel a certain way. For example, a person may play music to help them focus or put a living plant on his/her desk to surround themselves with nice things.