How to Detect a Lie

Are you getting the whole truth and nothing but? The answer may be lying right in front of you.

You will need

  • A good ear
  • Good eyes
  • A healthy skepticism

Step 1 Watch their hands Watch the suspected liar’s hands. Body language studies show that people tend to touch their face and scratch their nose when they lie.

Step 2 Follow their eyes Follow their eyes. Liars tend to blink a lot and don’t maintain eye contact.

Step 3 Note their words Note their words. A liar will skip contractions–saying ‘I did not’ instead of ‘I didn’t’–and avoid pronouns, using someone’s full name instead of ‘he’ or ‘she.’

Step 4 Check their smile Check their smile. People who are telling the truth use many facial muscles, but liars smile with just their mouth.

Step 5 Note their posture Notice their posture. Liars tend to keep their body posture closed (by folding their arms, for example). They may also unconsciously put an object between you, like a cup of coffee.

Step 6 Pause before responding Pause momentarily before responding; if the silence makes them uncomfortable, they may be lying.

Step 7 Note the details Pay attention to details. If they provide more information than necessary, that’s a bad sign. People tend to be overly specific when they’re making something up.

Step 8 Change the subject Change the subject. If they seem relieved, that’s probably a red flag that they’ve been lying straight to your face!

Step 9 Teach your liar a lesson What you do from here is up to you. It may be smart to file your knowledge away for future use. However, if you’re noticing a trend, it might just be time to teach your liar a lesson.