Proposed Canon
Signs are the visible indication that Signamancy is at work.
It would also explain the "decayed" look of characters dealing with moral or emotional conflict, such as Wanda during her service under Olive Branch, or the "clear Signs of personal decline" of Delphie Temple.
Jillian Zamussels, as she transitioned from Warlord to Ruler, lost muscle tone (sign of strength, as a warrior) and became rounder (softer physically and perhaps emotionally? In this case Don King is the pinnacle of a Ruler) and gained grace of posture (more regal - both more a Royal and more a Ruler).