People experiencing anxiety tend to walk to the left, new research finds.
It results from more activity in the right-hand-side of the brain.
The conclusions come from a study in which people were blindfolded and asked to walk in a straight line.
The more inhibited and anxious people tended to veer to the left.
In comparison, people who experience more positive emotions tended to veer off to the right.
The more inhibited and anxious they were, the more people accidentally wandered to the left.
The more positive and approach-oriented, the more they accidentally wandered to the right.
The differences are thought to be due to how approach and avoidance mechanisms are organised in the brain.
Broadly speaking the left-hand-side of the brain is linked to the motivation to approach situations and people.
Since the left-hand-side of the brain is connected to the right-hand-side of the body, people with an approach motivation walk to the right.
The reverse is seen in those with inhibitory or anxious motivational processing.
The study was published in the journal Cognition (Weick et al., 2016).
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Blindfolded image from Shutterstock