Common Myths About Liars

Common Myths About Liars

What Will a Great Liar Avoid?

  • Details
  • Eye Contact
  • Movement
  • Validation

Answer: Movement

Though the answer is “movement,” you aren’t alone if you guessed “eye contact.” It’s a common myth that people avoid eye contact when they lie, but studies show eye contact doesn’t change if someone is lying. If they don’t make eye contact while telling the truth, they won’t do it when lying, and visa versa.

The reason that the best liars avoid movement when they are lying is because they know their fidgeting will give them away. Some will even sit on or clasp their hands together to avoid making this mistake.

Excessive details and a search for validation are some of the hallmarks of a liar. Both of these things are ways of getting you enveloped in their stories. They will offer far more details than required, or pause frequently and wait for you to validate what they are saying by responding with a “yes” or “okay.” In fact, one test is to not respond at all during these pauses. If they continue to wait for a response (most likely while staring you down in thinly veiled disbelief… ironic isn’t it?), there is a good chance they are lying.

It’s handy to know how to tell when someone is lying, but there are two key points you should keep in mind.

First of all, it isn’t always about the details of what they are doing; but about the change in behavior patterns. For example, if the person is normally calm, but they suddenly start fidgeting while talking, they may be lying.

Some people are so immersed in their own lies that their tells are almost impossible to spot. Why? Because they actually believe what they are saying, so their bodies respond in kind.