Knowing if someone is telling the truth is just as important as knowing that someone is lying. Truth markers are less frequently mentioned than gestures that signal deception. And most people focus on identifying the signs of a lie. But truth markers can provide valuable information about the other person’s sincerity.
How can you tell if someone is telling the truth? The following 10 behaviors indicate that a person is telling the truth and is being honest with you:
- Direct quotes. People who tell the truth literally reproduce the lines of those they are talking about.
- Emotions. When describing people or events, those who tell the truth supplement the story with their own thoughts and emotions.
- Unexpected events or circumstances. Fictional stories are less likely to include unexpected events or unusual circumstances that come up during the retelling of events.
- Corrections. When people who tell the truth are wrong, they immediately correct themselves.
- Time. Honest people often do not focus on the exact time and place of the events described.
- Lessons learned. Truth-telling people draw parallels with similar experiences in the past and mention lessons learned from past experiences in their account of current events.
- Longer descriptions. True stories are longer, more complex, and contain specific details.
- Storytelling in the first person, as well as the use of the simple past tense. The use of first-person pronouns in combination with verbs in the simple past tense suggests that the person was involved in the events he describes and is extracting information from his memory.
- Non-relevant details. People who tell the truth include details and facts in their stories that are not related to the events described.
- Shrug and open palms. Among the gestures that indicate the sincerity of the interlocutor is a shrug of the shoulders, in which the hands are open, palms up.
What Are the Signs That Someone Is Lying?
The following 9 signs will help you to understand that someone is lying to you:
- They provide little information. Although this contradicts the prevailing opinion that deceivers come up with long fantastic stories and confuse the interlocutor. Research conducted in a survey of college students found that most of those who tried to speak as little as possible lied to scientists shamelessly.
- A lot of excises. Dishonest people spontaneously and unnecessarily make excuses for what they say, even if the other person doesn’t ask for it. Such people are afraid in advance of being accused of lying and therefore try to act proactively.
- They repeat after the interlocutor. To give themselves time to think over the answer, liars thoughtfully repeat the question just asked. Sometimes they change it a little when they repeat it so that the answer fits better with the story they make up.
- They monitor the reaction of the interlocutor. They read your emotions, trying to figure out if you bought into their stories, noticing distrust, deceivers try to correct their mistakes, or come up with new facts on the fly.
- They slow down speech at the beginning. It is impossible to quickly invent a story, tell it, and track the reaction at the same time. But those who tell the truth do not care – they can afford a slow and calm story, while liars are often afraid to look suspicious. The deceiver can change the speed of speech in one sentence: when he sees that he is believed, he accelerates and begins to speak more actively and confidently.
- They don’t finish the thought. Liars prefer to use fragments of sentences rather than complete phrases. They often start answering and jump to another topic, leaving the previous one unfinished.
- They use red herrings. When asked unpleasant questions, deceivers purse their lips, curl their hair around their fingers, and unconsciously use hand gestures directed towards themselves. If a person is gesturing in the direction of himself to the interlocutor, he often speaks the truth. Moreover, men are less prone to active gestures than women.
- They deny without explanation. If an honest person is accused of lying, he will make excuses, citing new facts and details to confirm the truth of his words. The liar has nowhere to get new facts, so he denies his deception without any specifics.
- They do not look away. Looking away and thinking is a normal reaction to a difficult question that requires concentration or memory. But the deceivers are afraid that such a pause may not be regarded in their favor. Therefore, they answer immediately or look away for a very short time.
10 Signs Someone is Lying to You Video Guide
It’s hard to lie because it makes you think. Lies have to be created from scratch, and this is additional work for the brain. A person needs to rework the truth and come up with a story that:
- does not contradict the facts known to the interlocutor
- cannot be verified or disproved
Lies have to be created, remembered, and told with confidence — all of which takes time and concentration.
In this sense, signs of increased cognitive load, that is, careful deliberation, are much more indicative of cheaters than signs of stress. Therefore, do not pay attention to the tension, nervousness, and anxiety of a person. A liar is more likely to appear thoughtful, speak in an impersonal tone, and be distant.
Another important signal is blinking. When a person is nervous, they blink more often; with increasing cognitive load – less often. So, contrary to the expected, often blinking and fidgeting person is not going to deceive you.
Rather, you should be alerted by the stiffness of movements and lack of gesticulation, repetition of the same phrases, pauses before answering, and uneven speech tempo.
Former FBI Agent Explains How to Detect Lying & Deception | Tradecraft | WIRED
How Do You Catch a Liar in a Lie?
- Ask the other person to tell the whole story in reverse order, starting at the end and going back to the beginning step by step. Ask clarifying questions, trying to get the most complete and detailed picture of what happened. This technique was developed in collaboration with psychologist Ronald Fisher, a researcher at Florida International University. Fisher believes that this increase in cognitive load forces the person to balance on the edge of a lie, trying to stick to what was previously thought up and track your reaction to what was told.
- Ask open-ended questions, forcing the interlocutor to provide as much detail and additional information as possible: “Please tell us more about this situation …”, “Can you remember …”, “And what happened after …”. At the same time, first, ask a general question, and only then elaborate.
- Don’t interrupt and use pauses in the conversation to encourage the other person to speak first. A painful silence unnerves the deceivers and makes them suspect that they are not believed. In trying to fix this, they often say a lot.
- Ask sharply for something unexpected, and then return to the topic of the conversation, preferably with the question asked earlier. A bewildered liar can give himself away by voicing completely different answers to the same question.
5 Foolproof Ways to Spot a Liar Video Guide
What Words Do Liars Use?
- NeverIt is worth paying attention when a person says “never” if a simple “no” was enough. This is a sign that he is trying to hide something. For example, if you ask: “Have you been staring at that girl’s ass?” And he will answer: “Never!”
- This / thatLike the rest of the words on the list, it all depends on how the word is used. If a person puts “this / that” in front of a noun, like “that woman” or “that money,” this is a subconscious attempt to distance oneself from the object. This is a common manipulator trick.
- WouldAgain, if instead of a simple “no” you hear “I would never do something like this!” when it comes to past events, be careful. For example, “Are you still in touch with your ex?” “I would never do that!” At the very least, this means that the person assumes that he can do this in the future.
- By the way Liars use words like this to try to minimize attention to what they have to say next, but this is usually the most important thing to say to you. Pay particular attention to what is said after the word “by the way.” More often than not, this is completely “inappropriate”!
- ButLiars usually try to play down what they say with this word, so be careful when someone says something like, “I know this will sound strange, but …” or “I know you are thinking that I’m lying, but … “
- Why should I do this?This is the liars’ favorite defense so they can buy some time to figure out what to say next. These phrases also fit: “What kind of person are you if you think so of me”, “Do you call me a liar?”
- HonestlyIf you are told “honestly”, “honest word”, especially without your request, then as statistics and psychologists say, then after this word comes 100% lie. It is not for nothing that many now say that Honesty is when you are going to say one thing, but tell the truth!
- I swearThe same as with the word “honest”, if without your request a person inserts this word, then this oath does not mean anything to him and he most likely wants to deceive you. That is why many people use oaths since only they help to deceive a person several times in a row.
- Don’t think thatWith this phrase, a person unconsciously or consciously makes you “not think”, and then, turning off your brain, he can successfully hang al dente noodles over your ears.
- They use the pronouns “they, he, she or we” more often than “I”. The use of “I” signifies confidence and responsibility, which is why liars tend to use other pronouns. Studies have shown that the following points prevail in the correspondence patterns of such people:• Few sentences with “I”
• Few words “for example”, “but”, “except”
• Lots of negative emotions, such as hatred, despair, anger, or sadness
- They use the constructions “honestly”, “to be honest”, “to be honest”. Liars use these phrases to confirm that whatever is being said is true. Of course, this is a lie, but persuasive words can make you believe. In fact, these are defensive phrases with which liars manipulate and reinforce their claims.
- They give short answers, deny bad deeds, and make excuses. If you ask the liars questions, they immediately become defensive. They deny any wrongdoing and justify their words or actions, even if you have never accused them of doing so or questioned their motives. This is a proactive tactic. They give short answers and defend themselves because they feel guilty.
- They say “I always” or “I never”. These phrases are false in most cases. Think about what you absolutely always or absolutely never do or never do? We all deviate from this “program” from time to time. The liar, on the other hand, adds such phrases to his monologues to sound more categorical and more confident.
- They give too much detail. Any liar has a well-thought-out lie at the ready, with lots of details to make it plausible. The liar will diligently delve into nuances, trying to make his story as realistic as possible. If his story is too detailed and colorful, then it probably has nothing to do with the truth.