Business of Men

11 ways to tell when someone Is lying to you

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We’d all like to believe that no one lies to us and that we’re, obviously, only told the truth. But the more realistic side of us knows that this is not always true. So how do you tell when someone is lying to you?

Ee sometimes have a little voice in our head that starts to ring the alarms to tell us that someone is lying and that we shouldn’t trust them. And, unfortunately, sometimes we do fall for the lies and believe the person we suspect of lying. This is either because they are good liars, we choose to believe them because we don’t want to know the truth or because we want to believe what they are telling us is true.

Fortunately, we can arm our realistic, alarm-sounding side to the several ways to pick up on someone’s lies — and even call them out on it.

1. Well…

A great way to tell if someone is lying to you, is to ask them a question about their lie, or that at least requires their honest opinion, and see if they start their answer off with ‘Well….’, instead of a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’.

This is because, using the word “well” before a response could be a sign that they are trying to think of an answer (lie) that you will believe, that will get them out any immediate trouble and will also move the conversation onto another topic. Which is something you should definitely be on the lookout for.

2. Why should I believe you?

When you suspect someone of lying, one of the first question you should be asking them is, ‘why should I believe you?’

While they may have an answer for all of your other questions, they probably won’t for this one because they may think you’ll believe them automatically.

Additionally, when caught in a lie, the person in question will do just about anything to get of the situation and make you believe them. And they will do this by insisting that they are telling you the truth and will say things like, ‘you can trust me’ or ‘I’d never lie to you’. But either way, if you are suspicious of something, you probably have a right to.

3. They stand very still

Another great way to tell if someone is lying to you, is to look at their body language. This can be done by asking them an unexpected question about their lie and seeing how they react. And if they react by standing still like a deer in headlights, then it is a good sign that they may be lying to you.

This is because, when caught off guard or asked unexpected questions, people tend to be surprised, mainly because they weren’t expecting you to question them or to get caught in a lie.

So, no matter what you think they are lying about, try to notice their body language because it can speak just as loudly as anything they say verbally.

4. They provide too much information

While it may seem like the more details you get about someone’s activities, the more likely you will believe them. But, it is more likely that, the reason they have provided so many details, is because they have anticipated any and all questions you might ask and are trying to cover up their lies.

This is because the more someone has to hide, or wants to hide something, the more thought they will put into what they will say if asked about their activities and are willing to go the extra mile to make sure they are.

But, while the devil may be in the detail, sometimes the best lies are the simplest and don’t really require that much detail.

So, no matter whom you suspect of lying or what they are lying about, some other things to look out for are when the details are ruining the lie and when the details actually check out.

5. They touch or cover their mouth

When people want to cover up the fact that they are lying or want to buy themselves more time to think of an answer, something they will do is either touch or cover their mouth to muffle their words to distract you from what they are saying.

This is because they know they are lying and are uncertain about what to say and want to delay their response. They may also look away so that you can’t see their face and the panic they’re feeling in thinking of something to say.

Either way, keep an eye on whether they touch or cover their mouth or avoid eye contact because these are also good ways to notice someone’s lying.

6. It becomes difficult for them to speak

When someone knows they have been caught in a lie and they can’t see a way out of it, they will become increasingly lost for words and even struggle to maintain a calm exterior.

This is because, when caught in a lie with no way out, your mind starts to race to think of an excuse in an attempt to save yourself from getting caught on your lies. Through this, it becomes increasingly harder for a liar to maintain a calm exterior because their web of lies starts to fall away and they don’t know how to get out of it.

From this, you should be able to tell if someone is lying because of how much they may be struggling to find something to say and make it seem plausible enough for you, or anyone else, to believe.

But with that being said, a person’s loss for words can also be a sign that they are either nervous or shy by nature, instead of being a liar — and that’s why they don’t know what to say.

And, perhaps the best way for you to be able to tell the difference between the two is to know the person. If you know they are shy or nervous by nature, then you can feel fairly confident about the fact that they aren’t lying to you. If you don’t feel that confidence, then they’re most likely lying to you.

7. They have an answer for everything

If someone you suspect of lying appears to have an answer for everything, it probably means they are lying.

This is because, they have gone to great lengths to cover up the fact that they are lying and have, in their minds, thought of every question you could possibly ask them about their activities.

Additionally, when asked about their daily or weekly activities, most people need to take a moment to think about what they did during the day or time in question, whereas, someone who gives an answer straight away, is probably trying to cover their tracks by knowing what they did right off the top of their head.

8. They fidget for no reason

Not knowing what to do with themselves by fidgeting for no apparent reason is a good sign that someone is lying.

It can also suggest that they are uncomfortable being asked about a certain topic and are busily racking their brain for an answer and a way out of a bad situation.

Additionally, you may also want to see if they fidget more if you apply a little more pressure to the situation and press them for an answer faster than they can think of one.

But, a good rule of thumb for this one might be that, if they can’t sit still, they aren’t good liars anyway and are the easiest ones to pick out.

9. They proclaim their honesty repeatedly

They may even use classic lines like ‘why would I lie to you?’, ‘I’ve never given you a reason to doubt me!’, ‘you know me!’, and so on. But if someone you suspect of lying gets defensive quite quickly about being called a liar, it is a good sign that they aren’t being honest with you and are trying to cover it up.

Besides, most people don’t use sentences like ‘you know me’ or ‘why would I lie to you?’ to prove their innocence.

10. Is their face giving it away?

Whether they know it or not, a liar’s facial expressions can be a dead give away to revealing their lies and can be just as expressive as their body language. And, while a liar may think that a nice little smile or look of confusion will help them get away with murder, in reality, it really doesn’t.

This is because, even the most subtle of facial expressions can be read as a defensive measure to hide the fact that they are lying and don’t want you to know.

So, if you do suspect someone of lying, try asking about their day and pay close attention to their facial expressions because their first reaction can reveal a lot of information that you may not get otherwise.

11. Are they behaving uncharacteristically?

This is because, being dishonest often weighs heavily on someone’s mind and they may find it hard to cope and maintain the secret or lie.

So, if someone you know is normally quite calm and in control of themselves, but has started to act a bit shifty or otherwise out of character, you may want to start wondering why and asking, ‘why are they acting like this?’, ‘what could they be keeping from me?’, ‘should I be worried?’, etc.

Through this, you should be able to at least, pick up on any unusual behavior or mannerisms they may be displaying.

***

Whether it’s a little white lie or a big fat, juicy one, we do get lied to. And whether we’re easily fooled or we choose to believe the lies, there are many ways to find out the truth. We just have to be on the lookout for them.

About Rowena Nagy

Rowena Nagy is a Journalist at The Business Woman Media. A graduate in Journalism, Media and Communications, she is passionate about in writing, travel journalism, video journalism and Public Relations.

7 Comments

  1. firaxan@gmail.com'

    Heh

    April 20, 2016 at 3:10 pm

    Thanks for perpetuating that people who have bad social skills are liars. This is simply upsetting. Most of these “signs” are not a sign of lying.
    I might not have a clear answer because I’m trying to remember all the related (true) connections and putting them into understandable language.
    I might not know what proof to give to support a true thing because of not having a concrete proof. I might provide too much info (that is true!) because I feel like I’m not being understood OR believed.
    I might very well have a difficult time talking NOT because I’m lying but because I’m trying to explain a situation that is uncommon for other people or can’t give an immediate reason for something (there are always many reasons and implications for me, so I don’t have one clear answer). I touch my mouth when I’m thinking – are you saying I’m also lying to the computer or to the work or article I’m doing or reading? Ridiculous. Also, I fidget because I’m a bad communicator.

  2. asauter22@gmail.com'

    Tony

    May 14, 2016 at 10:05 am

    Everyone thinks they have their way of detecting a liar but like lie detector machines they aren’t always right. I like the commercial when the wife asks the husband, do you think my sister is prettier than me while hooked up to the lie detector machine.

  3. snowite012267@gmail.com'

    Tommie

    June 14, 2016 at 4:48 pm

    Some of these contradict themselves. One says if they sit still they are a liar another says if they fidget they are a liar. I do know for a fact that when a person looks away it doesn’t always mean they are telling a lie. It can also mean they are trying to remember and are going through what happened in their head, trying to focus on more details. Also when touching your face that means a person is in deep thought thinking so it could be they are trying again to remember. Next time you are in a meeting look around and see who all is touching their face I am sure those are the ones most interested in what you are trying to tell them.

  4. myannabug4me@gmail.com'

    wendy

    June 21, 2016 at 7:16 pm

    wow all good points! ^^^^^

    • cantmando@yahoo.com'

      the cat man

      June 25, 2016 at 12:04 am

      NOT!

  5. annisonjennifer@gmail.com'

    Jennifer Annison

    July 20, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    Did you research this topic before writing it? Many of these “tips” are contradictory or have been debunked by science years ago. And nowhere do you seem to take into account that people have quirky mannerisms that mean nothing in regards to covering up a lie. People who are being questioned (by boss, cop, etc) are often nervous and feel put on the spot. Some of these tips are as bad as the one we all heard for years: if a person looks up to the right, they’re not telling them truth. I wonder how many people who nervously looked up to the right were singled out as lying, untrustworthy people. There is no magical way to detect a liar. This article is irresponsible.

  6. Meowalong@gmail.com'

    Meowing

    April 8, 2018 at 4:43 pm

    I think all of you that are saying that none of what was talked about is true.. You all are doing nothing but trying to cover your ass.. Truth is not confusing the truth adds up no matter which way you add it.. Lies are confusing don’t make sense An dam sure don’t add up period…

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