How to tell if someone is lying to you. 12 proven ways to spot a liar.

So you want to be able to detect if someone is lying to you. That is definitely possible and in this guide, I am going to show you exactly how.

The first thing to know is that there is not a universal way to know whether someone is being deceptive. The big misconception many people think is that there are certain things that a person does when they are lying like rubbing their nose or touching their face. That is totally wrong. There is not an absolute profile of an honest or dishonest person.

So how do we know if someone is being deceptive?

The only way to tell if someone is lying is by observing a change in their behavior during their response to some question.

It is all relative. Nothing is absolute.

Someone might rub their nose every time they speak or answer a question. You can't assert that they are lying because they rub their nose all the time. It is an automatic reflex for them. However, if they didn't rub their nose for only one question then that could be a sign that they are lying for that particular question. The "not rubbing the nose" becomes the sign.

It is very important to understand this concept as it is the key to uncovering deceptive people.

So here is what we want to do: we are looking for special signs that the person shows when they answer a particular question and don't show for other normal questions.

So what are those signs?

  • 1. Looking away or Avoiding Eye Contact

    If the person is constantly maintaining eye contact but suddenly looks away or avoids eye contact then that could be a sign of dishonesty. They are trying to recollect their thoughts without looking into you to formulate a fake response.

  • 2) Touching the face or hair

    Normally not an issue as stated earlier but if it happens in response to one specific question or when discussing critical details then take note of that.

  • 3) Fidgeting or finger Cracking

    Fidgeting is intense movement in the hands or feet like rubbing them together. Many honest people do that as they talk without knowing, so this should only raise alarms if done occasionally during a conversation.

  • 4) Swallow deeply

    In movies when a liar is depicted, they are shown as swallowing deeply. This depiction is accurate as liars salivate less, which causes their mouths to become dry and hence swallow more often.

  • 5) Increase in body activity

    Lairs want to run from the scene and disappear, but they can't. The excessive energy in their body from wanting to run is manifested in increased body activity especially moving sideways or adjusting their posture.

  • 6) Avoid giving details

    Most lies are simple and shallow. A lack of details could be a sign of lying. Liars will usually give short answers with very few details so that they don't get caught in their own lies. When you get a very short answer to a question that requires a lot of details, then something phishy could be going on.

  • 7) Excessive Use of Maybe, Kind of, Not Sure

    The use of words that indicate a lack of confidence like "maybe", "kind of", "frankly", and "honestly" could indicate an attempt of deception.

  • 8) Non-linguistic Verbal

    A sudden change in pace, volume, or pitch unexpectedly is something to stay alert to during a conversation. Coupled with other signs on the list it can indicate an attempt to cover a lie.

  • 9) Excessive effort to state a fact

    Trying to explain something beyond the required when it is not necessary. This means that their position is weak, so they expend additional effort to state facts in an overly complicated way.

  • 10) Aggression and Being extra defensive

    When someone tries too hard to convince you of something beyond the required, it is probably because they sense that you don't believe them, hence the ultra-defensive position.

  • 11) Evasavness: Avoids Answering the question

    You ask a question and they go on to talk forever without answering the question. This is a very strong sign of deceptive behavior. They are afraid of giving a straight answer and just stall and talk for hours.

  • 12) A long pause before the answer

    Especially if the question is simple and does not requires thinking.