Interviewing a potential employee? Dating a married man? Believe your neighbor is a criminal? The skill to spot a liar is necessary to have in these scenarios. You want to make sure those you know or are meeting for the first time aren’t trying to use you. It’s actually pretty easy to tell if someone is lying, if you know what to do or look for. Below, we describe ways of how to spot a liar in seconds.
1. Listen To How They Speak
You can tell if someone is lying to you by the way they speak. If someone is speaking faster than normal, clearing their throat often, and/or is talking louder, they are likely lying to you. However, these signs could just demonstrate the person is stressed.
2. Watch For Micro Facial Expressions
According to Dr. Paul Ekman, there are seven universal emotions everyone has. Within each emotion, there are micro facial expressions that exemplify these emotions.
- Contempt: Corner of the mouth is slightly raised and tight.
- Fear: Wide eyes, raised eyebrows, stretched lips.
- Disgust: Top lip is raised and nose is wrinkled.
- Sadness: Droopy eyelids, frowning, unfocused eyes.
- Surprised: Raised eyebrows, mouth open, wide eyes.
- Anger: Glaring eyes, pursed lips, narrowed eyes.
- Happiness: Full cheeks, upward smile.
Knowing these expressions can help you determine whether someone is lying to you.
3. How Do They Say, “No”?
The answer to most questions is “Yes” or “No”. You can tell by how they say “No” whether they lied about it. If they hesitate, say “Noooooo”, look in another direction, or close their eyes, they actually meant to answer “Yes”.
4. Read Their Body Language
Looking to see if someone has a Poker Face is part of reading someone’s body language. You’re looking for tell signs that they aren’t telling the truth. This includes touching their eyes or nose, biting or pursing their lips, adjusting their shirt, eyes looking down to the right, or playing with their hair.
5. Change The Subject
When having a conversation with someone, you can catch them off guard by changing the subject. By doing this, their train of thought strays making them more susceptible to accidentally telling the truth or getting caught in a lie.
6. Ask Surprise Questions
People who lie use the other’s predictable nature to their advantage. To throw a liar off guard, ask random or specific questions that require them to give a detailed answer. If they hesitate to answer or try to change the subject themselves, they’re lying.
Knowing how to spot a liar is a good skill to have. However, sometimes there are people who are just really good at lying that’ll be hard to catch. After talking to them, you may also want to run a person search to see if some of their story details check out.
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