The psychology of deception and lying: laying it out

The psychology of lying: how to suspect that you want to cheat?

The study of deception as a phenomenon, psychology has long been engaged in. We can say that lying is a kind of popular social game, in which everyone without exception participates. Despite the negative coloring and apparent rejection by society, deception is an important and natural part of any individual’s life. If the tendency to wishful thinking can be observed even in animals, what about humans? Animals often disguise themselves and imitate certain states in order to survive or to provide themselves with the most comfortable conditions of existence. Mankind has been using pretense from the very beginning for similar motives.

Different methods are used: it is possible to mislead a person directly for personal gain, to cheat for a common cause, not to tell the whole truth, to falsify facts, to embellish the truth or to keep silent about it in order not to upset another person… No matter what people call such tricks, each of them in its essence is a deception and is used everywhere.

The psychology of lying: why do people deceive each other?

Deception can have different purposes, but they all revolve around interpersonal relationships. Psychology identifies several leading motives for deception:

  • Protecting one’s identity.

There are cases when a person is simply unable to show himself in a situation openly, and therefore goes to the deception. All in order to make a pleasant impression on others and quickly move up the social ladder.

  • Fear of being judged

For certain reasons, the individual is afraid of being judged by others, afraid to lose authority in familiar circles, or to show oneself in a bad light. Such a person values his place in society and the reputation that has been built up over the years. According to psychology, this fear is inherent in almost all people, to a greater or lesser extent.

  • Fear of not being understood

A person carefully considers his communication with others and often uses pretense and lies, because he does not dare to show his individuality, to show who he really is.

  • Protecting personal positions and interests of their loved ones

This may be a form of self-protective deception or a “lie for the greater good.

  • Stalking mercantile goals

Deception is used for material gain (obtaining monetary remuneration or other benefits).

Of course, it would be wrong to say that only bad people are capable of deception. Apply cunning tricks and deceive periodically all. Nevertheless, it will be useful for everyone to know the main signs by which you can recognize someone else’s insincerity and a firm focus on deception.

The personality of the deceiver: nonverbal signs of insincerity

The basic outward manifestations that accompany a false narrative or attempted cheating are known to almost everyone. These include:

  • Frequent nervous swallowing of saliva;
  • Rapid blinking;
  • abrupt constriction of the pupils;
  • Heavy, noisy breathing (sometimes with yawning);
  • sudden onset of pronounced blush or reddish blotches on the face;
  • Tremors in the hands, sweaty palms;
  • sweating on the forehead or over the upper lip;
  • crossing of arms or legs;
  • putting hands behind back or in pockets;
  • abrupt, implausible changes in facial expression.

The signs listed above are the most common. However, it is impossible to catch a skilled liar. Moreover, some skilled liars are able to successfully evade even the most sensitive detectors. Not surprisingly, such people do not just thoroughly practice every “legend”, but also diligently learn to control their gestures and physiological reactions. And yet even the most egregious deceivers often give themselves away.

For example, if you suspect that the interlocutor is trying to “trick” you, but is confident, it makes sense to ask him leading questions. It is important to be especially careful at times when he:

  • hears the question for the first time;
  • Analyzes it;
  • gives an answer.

A truth-teller unknowingly engages many facial muscles, so a sincere narrative is supported by lively facial expressions. A liar, on the other hand, will have a “waxed” facial expression: the face is frozen, a smile is present only on the lips, and the eyes do not express appropriate emotions. Besides, it is necessary to take into account that when answering the questions with truth, a person usually keeps straight, with his head up, whereas a false answer can be accompanied by shifting from foot to foot, repeatedly touching the face (scratching the nose, striving to remove a non-existent particle from the corner of the eye, etc.), often turning the head (“shaking” bangs, looking around, etc.), bending the body or fixing it in unnatural and obviously uncomfortable postures. Truthful speech is accompanied by relaxed gesticulation, which harmoniously complements the words. When the person himself does not believe in what he says, his gesticulation as if ceases to agree with the speech and looks nonsensical.

At the beginning of communication is not superfluous to know which hand interlocutor used to gesticulate and pick up objects. To find this out, it is enough to give him a couple of times unobtrusively a small thing, and then see which hand he uses more actively. The fact is that at moments of insincerity, any individual begins to unconsciously control his movements. In this case, the “active” side of the body comes to rest, while the “secondary” side acquires a pronounced mobility. In other words, a right-handed person will start to gesticulate vividly with his or her left hand, and a left-handed person with his or her right hand.

In order for communication to become trustworthy, an experienced deceiver will certainly try to “attune” himself to the potential victim of his lie. At first he will carefully observe the interlocutor, analyzing the behavior. Then he will periodically speak in his phrases, unobtrusively repeat his gestures, “casually” touch his hands, tracking the reactions. This factor is also worth taking into account.

Communication and lying: the speech of a deceiver

Psychology says: a man is more willing to believe a small lie than a big one, regardless of how well the deceiver has thought out his story. Trying to mislead the interlocutor, the thoughtful liar will gradually weave a little deception into the thread of the conversation, slightly distorting the facts, embellishing the reality. Because of this, it is extremely difficult to understand what and at what moments the deceiver is deceiving.

To minimize the risk of being deceived when communicating with a person who causes doubt, it is necessary to try to catch the basic speech line of this person as accurately as possible, and then follow the deviations in his or her manner of speaking. For example, if in a normal relaxed state the interlocutor is always slow with the next phrase, then with a false narrative he may start gibbering. It is worth noting that a false narrative almost always contains more pauses than a true one.

Psychology knows that even the most vicious liars subconsciously feel discomfort and guilt. Own lies make a person feel discomfort, and therefore at the moment of insincerity a person can become irritable, suspicious and withdrawn. The speech of the cunning person is too full of second and third person pronouns – “you”, “you”, “they”. Sometimes a liar reveals a tendency to interrogate the interlocutor too often and to use introductory phrases: “Frankly speaking…”, “In general, if we speak openly, then…”.

If the interlocutor gives an evasive, convoluted answer to a direct question (especially if it follows after a long pause) – it is a valid reason to be wary.

Additional recommendations

A liar can be “cracked” by an insufficiently thought-out “legend”. Suspecting deception, ask the interlocutor unobtrusively for details. The person who told an honest story will easily reconstruct the real situation in his thoughts, and remember every little detail that was missed. In addition, he has no difficulty retelling parts of his story in reverse or any other order without error. Liars often have inaccuracies in such circumstances, but liars usually do not want to admit them.

It is also worth noting that most often people lie when talking on the phone. If during a phone conversation you suspect that the person you are talking to misleads you, if possible, arrange a meeting with him and in the process of the conversation return to the topic of interest to you. Observe the person’s reaction and determine whether there are inaccuracies between what they said on the phone and what they say in face-to-face interactions.

Of course, deceptions come in many forms. Some are so inconsequential that it is pointless to focus on them. Be a careful observer, and the most important truth will not escape you!

To determine the extent of his shyness, you should agree to or refute the following statements.

The psychology of deception: how to recognize a lie

All of us lie almost every day. Someone lies more, someone – less. This phenomenon is absolutely normal. But it is worth understanding that there is a harmless lie, and there is deception on a serious scale.

For example, you are in a bad mood, and your friend asked how you are doing. You lied that you are fine, because you did not want to go into details – such a lie is unlikely to bring someone harm. If, for example, the person promised to do some service for you, but after your payment he disappeared – this is a serious deception, which equates to fraud.

Interesting information:
  • extroverts lie much more often than introverts;
  • socially active people lie much more often;
  • women lie more often about everyday things, and men lie about everything that concerns their personal life.

For obvious reasons in some life situations we want to recognize the lie: sometimes just out of curiosity, and sometimes – because it is critically necessary. After reading this article, you will learn some simple tricks that will help you find out if your interlocutor is lying to you. Interested? Then here we go!

The psychology of deception: how to recognize a lie

Imagine the picture: you are standing and talking to someone. How do you know if the person is lying? In fact, it is quite difficult, but there are certain signs of lying, by which it is not difficult to calculate the liar.

The main signs of lying:

  • The interlocutor pauses too often in the conversation, constantly changes his intonation and repeats himself;
  • His words and expressions are inconsistent: he says one thing, but his face says another;
  • His emotions change one after another;
  • The interlocutor looks too often in the eyes, or on the contrary, tries to avoid eye contact.

Let’s say at once that the psychology of deception is very complex and multifaceted. For example, your interlocutor may pause in conversation simply because he is nervous, not lying. Or, say, he does not look you in the eye, because he is shy, or he really likes you. So it is impossible to consider these signs of lying 100% accurate.

How to detect lying through the eyes of the interlocutor

The eyes – the mirror of the soul. Sages never cease to tell us that by them you can learn anything. “The eyes don’t lie,” but know that a skilled liar will be able to hide his lies, no matter how closely you look at him.

Fortunately, there are very few true scam artists, and if the average person will lie to you, look into his eyes-they will tell you a lot.

How to tell from the eyes that a person is lying:

  • studies have shown that a sincere person looks his interlocutor in the eyes during 70% of the conversation, while a liar tries to avoid eye contact and looks only 30% of the time; if we talk about experienced liars, they look into the eyes almost constantly, which is unnatural and should immediately alert you;
  • A liar is stressed, so you can see a glint and dilation of the pupils in his eyes;
  • women, when lying, look mostly upwards, and men – downwards.

The psychology of lying and deception: watching the gestures of a liar

How to recognize deception by gestures? First, analyze the posture of the interlocutor: if he has crossed arms or legs, this means that he seeks to close himself from you. If he is constantly fidgeting, it is possible that a person is uncomfortable talking with you on a particular topic.

Lying is often accompanied by ridiculous touching: if the interlocutor constantly touches his nose, ears, rubs his palms – with a high probability he is lying. Analyze how sincere people behave, and then in the future you will immediately notice if someone is lying to you.

You can detect deception only with a lie detector

How to detect deception with high accuracy? Sit the person behind a lie detector and test him on it – there are no other more effective methods. Let’s say more: experienced liars can bypass a lie detector like a spit, too complicated the psychology of lying and deception (similar was in the movie “Hannibal: The Ascent”). So there is no definite answer to the question “How do you know if you are being lied to?

Until one learns to read someone else’s mind, one cannot tell for certain whether the person he or she is talking to is lying.

So accept the fact that deception has been, is and will continue to be in existence at all times until man dies out! We hope that this article was useful to you, and the techniques described in it will help you in everyday communication.

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