Just like a fancily plated dish can speak volumes about a restaurant, the way you arrange a family-style meal on your plate can say a lot about you, according to Juliet Boghossian, a behavioral food scientist and Food-ology founder who has been examining the connection between eating habits and personality for upward of 20 years. Boghossian believes people aren't what they eat, but how they eat it. Here's what she sees in you when she sees your plate:
1. You give equal space to each food. You're a pre-planner who doesn't take on more than you can handle or want. You are disciplined, and you don't veer away from your goals. You are most likely to declare your major from the get-go of your college experience. You understand what works for you and your capacity. You're likely to see a project through.
2. You messily slop on scoops of different foods with borders overlapping and sauces running into one another. You're a free-spirited multitasker who takes on everything that comes your way, eager to try and experience everything—even if time doesn't permit. In college, you were so busy exploring all your options that you couldn't possibly declare a major right away. You are down-to-earth, easygoing, and you prioritize your life based on deadlines.
3. You pile food into your salad or soup bowl instead of placing it on your dinner plate. You're the tireless creative seeking to be unique. You offer pleasing memorable experiences for those closest to you. Always thinking outside the box, you revel in presenting things in a different, beautiful, and comforting way. You are most likely to be in a creative field with a home or work space that has personalized touches—it makes any space you inhabit feel particularly inviting. You set your priorities based on how you feel and how you make others feel.
4. You eat off your partner's plate. You often exhibit a very entitled personality. You maintain very close relationships with people you value and have a real difficulty minding boundaries, which could lead to privacy issues. In relationships, your openness supports a very connected, loving partnership—lots of cuddling, sharing, and intimate dinners for two. In fashion, you will, without hesitation, borrow the perfect shoes from a friend to complete your ensemble.
5. You only put one kind of food on your plate at a time. You are disciplined, methodical, and task-oriented. You are well-balanced and steady in all that you take on, seldom stretching yourself too thin. In relationships, you appreciate each phase or experience, from courtship to moving in together, you are fully vested with your partner, affording him or her your undivided attention. With your personal style, you are most apt to wear timeless solids. This gives you more time to enjoy any experience that comes your way versus fretting over what you are wearing and if it is appropriate.
6. You stack foods on top of each other. (A dinner roll and turkey become a sandwich; a salad starter becomes the base for the rest of your meal.) Your friends know you as the multitasking, traditional conformist. You are responsible to a fault. Like Old Faithful, you can be counted on at any time, any day. You are also viewed as predictable by those closest to you, and also stubborn and lacking adventure. In relationships, you are the steady rock. But be careful not to turn into the caretaker with this nurturing personality. In fashion, you are most likely to purchase a complete ensemble outfit (matching shoes, belt, outfit, accessories) as you like things as they are intended.
7. You eat dessert and dinner off the same plate. You approach opportunity impulsively: When opportunity knocks, it's in your nature to take advantage of it as quickly as possible before anyone else can beat you to the punch. You're quick to commit—so quick that you often miss out on other opportunities. This makes you especially susceptible to the could-have-should-have syndrome—and buyer's remorse, which could lead to redundant spending to make up for impulsive actions gone wrong.
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.