Pinocchio couldn’t get away with lying. Lies can cause emotional pain when they are between people in relationships and financial losses to a person being conned. Most people don’t have lie detectors readily available to check the truthfulness of a person’s statements. So, how can we tell if a person is lying? What are the signs when someone is telling a lie?
There actually are common signs that indicate that a person is being less than truthful. Perhaps the most well known sign that a person is lying is a lack of eye contact. Television moms have often used this test to see if their children were lying by telling the child to repeat the statement while looking them in the eye. Many people can lie and look the person in the eye if they are aware of this test. However, if attention is not drawn to eye contact, many people will subconsciously avoid eye contact while lying.
Inconsistencies in their stories are obvious red flags. If a person changes the story, the listener must wonder why. In some cases, it may be a simple miscommunication or forgetfulness. But if there are conflicting statements in the story or if the retold story conflicts with the first version, there’s a good chance that the story contains lies. Extra details in the story that many people would not include and are not relevant can be a sign of lying.
A person may have unusual body movements or facial expressions. Fidgeting, toe tapping, large gestures, or other movements that are unusual for that person can be signs of a lie. Some facial expressions and movements that could indicate a lie are raising one or both eyebrows, tension in the face, or frequent blinking.
The person’s voice may have signs of lying. A person who is lying may have a nervous laugh or stammer. Throat clearing, changes in the sound of the person’s voice, and long pauses can be signs of a lie. Some people talk faster than normal when they are lying.
Telling if a person is lying by the person’s behavior is not totally accurate. A person may show some signs for other reasons. Even a lie detector isn’t one hundred percent accurate in detecting lies. However, if a person’s story just doesn’t make much sense or doesn’t seem realistic and the person is showing some of these signs, chances are that the person is lying.