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How to tell someone’s lying (and 8 other facts about lying you need to know)

How to tell someone’s lying (and 8 other facts about lying you need to know)

‘No honey, you don’t look fat in those pants.’ Unknowingly, we lie much more often than we want to. In this TED talk, writer Pamela Meyer tells us all about lying: why do we do it? And how?

Why do we lie?

According to Pamela Meyer, essentially, lying is about our desires. We all long for something sometimes: intelligence, wealth, the perfect figure, ani deal partner. When we lie,  we do so to bridge a gap. We connect our fantasies and desires about who we want to be, to who we really are.

4 signs that you’re being lied to

Formal language

Your partner is talking more formal than you would expect given the situation. A liar often uses language to create a distance between themselves and the subject of the lie. For instance, think about Bill Clinton: ‘I want you to listen to me. I’m going to say this again: I did not have sexual relations with that woman.’

Too many details

The lie is often wrapped in details, like a gift. The irrelevant details feel odd, and don’t contribute to the story.

Body language

Do the words of your conversation partner tell a completely different story than their body language? Chances are the person with the crouched posture who’s telling you the cool story, is lying.

Funny behaviour

According to scientific research, liars are easily exposed by taking a good look at their behaviour. People who are lying, often tend to distance themselves from the situation. They do by blinking a lot, putting an object between themselves and the conversation partner, or focusing their body towards the door. To sell the lie, we talk in a low voice.

And 8 other facts about lying we bet you don’t know yet

-According to research, you are told 10 to 200 lies a day (!)

-Strangers who meet for the first time, tell each other on average 3 lies in the first 10 -minutes

-People lie more often to strangers than to colleagues

-Extroverted people lie more than introverted people

-Men lie 8 times more often about themselves than they do about other people

-Women, on the other hand, lie more often to protect others

-Married couples lie at least once in every ten conversations

-And that’s not bad… because unmarried couples do so at least once in every three conversations

Photo: Vinicius Wiesehofer

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