One of the first things you might notice about Berniece Bland’s upon meeting her is how much her last name doesn’t match her personality.
In fact, she is anything but bland, which is why she is this week’s interesting person in the community.
Before settling down in Cheadle about 30 years ago, Bland and her family moved around the country, as they following her husband through his career in the RCMP.
Today, Bland sits on the Wheatland County Council, and is in her second term. She said that she enjoys being on council because it has taught her a lot about her community and that she has a great appreciation for politics.
“It took two years to really learn how everything worked,” she said of being on council. “I’m in my fourth year now so I have things figured out, and I enjoy it.
“I have a tremendous area that I look after, and the people are really good.
“It’s an interesting job, because it wakes you up to what is going on in other people’s lives in your world that you wouldn’t have otherwise known about.”
Although she is busy with her position on council, Bland has a whole other career as a graphologist, meaning that she studies handwriting to analyze character and personality traits.
She did heavy training in graphology to earn her degree, doing all of the work through the mail through correspondence from a school in Chicago, the only way it was available 20 years ago.
Bland said that she read a book about graphology and thought it was interesting, so she decided to look into it further, and found it was something she was passionate about.
”There isn’t anything you can’t tell about a people through their handwriting,” she said. “From their health to their brain, everything is in there on the page.
“If you suddenly got a bad headache or bad news while you were writing, it would immediately show.”
Bland said that everything that goes into handwriting has to do with the subconscious mind, and that she looks at everything from the shape of the writing, to the way the first letters in a sentence are written, to whether or not someone dots their I’s and how they cross their T’s.
She said that she used to study handwriting for businesses or law firms, but has also done it for individuals who were seeking guidance. These days she mostly works with people through word of mouth rather than for business reasons.
In addition to graphology, Bland has also studied color psychology, where she studies colors and how they factor in to human behavior. She said that is also trained in massage therapy, and uses this skill to help palliative care patients.
Bland said that she continues to learn new things about people every day, whether it’s while she is sitting on the Wheatland County council or while she passes someone where bright colors on the street.
As far as why she is involved in so many things, she simply said, “I just love working with people.”