Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Flushing Out The Liar

How can we tell who’s lying and who’s not?

Fidgety hands?

Stuttering speech?

Pants on fire?

Actually, it seems that the face will betray true emotion if we look for it. So, it isn't in the sweaty brow, the hesitant words or the shifty eyes. Instead, it's the liar's facial muscles that "crack” or "leak" through, displaying the real emotion. For more read here

Another technique to test for truthfulness is to ask a person to recall his or her story backwards - From end to beginning in sequential stages. Reverse order is harder to create than building a lie from the start. Telling the story from its end to its beginning will be easy for the truth teller.

Interesting stuff . . .and I ain't lying.


Big Brother said...

I'll try the backwards story next time a student is telling me about why his homework isn't done. ;o)

The Lone Beader said...

Thats easy - everyone is a liar!


This makes me feel a little better, cause with MS sometimes those words just don't flow easily and it seems that I 'could' be trying to craft something up.

But I like the backwards telling tactic. That would be so much easier for me in remembering stuff or telling about events.

In music that is a technique I use with my students in perfecting/learning a song. The theory is that it's always easier to know where you're going with the music than to get stuck on where you've been and moving into the unknown.

Deb said...

Hey BB,
Let me know if it works. I totally got my niece in a fib this way. Then again, she is five.

Dear Lone,
From time to time we all lie and tell fibs. True. But some are prone to lying and manipulating etc. more than others. These are good tools to keep handy.

Dear Lisa,
I am a terrible poker player and now I know why. My face leaks! Love the music technique. So interesting. And I know what you mean about slow flowing words. I get tongue tied and hesitate out of social anxiety a great deal of the time.

Jade said...

I've utilized the"tell me the event backwards" technique on quite a few individuals, including the children I worked with at my internship. It was and always has been pretty effective.

I wasn't aware of "facial leaking" though. Very interesting. Wonder if thats why people give off weird energies...because they're lying all the time and we instinctually pick up on it but are unable to label it? Something to think about.... lol ;-)

cb said...

That's really interesting and definitely worth a try! Although actually i might have problems telling a story backwards even when it's the truth as I have a memory like a sieve!

Teresa Lynne said...

I don't lie, but I am not a good liar either.

If I withold information, I either smile, laugh, or make no eye contact whatsoever.

Kahless said...

Great tips thanks. I really liked this. Next time I am doing a disciplinary at work I will remember the backwards one.

I am currently thinking about loyalty. I am not sure if someone is nice to my face but stabbing me behind my back. How do I tell that one I wonder?

Go with gut feel?

Health Psych said...

Interesting. Now you've got me wondering whether botox is an aid to lying? :)

Deb said...

I found the phrase interesting too.

I think the truth has a way of rooting itself into our minds even if our memory is shaky.

I'm a terrible liar too. For all of the same reasons!

Go with your gut, for sure. Look for consistency in character, behavior and history.

Health Psych,
Oh wow. You are totally onto something here. Botox would DEFINTELY negatively impact this research!!!

Emily and Kayla said...

I can't tell the truth backwards, let alone a lie. I might fail that test even if I wasn't lying.

Anonymous said...

No wonder they tell you to keep your lies really simple. It's hard to screw up the dog ate my homework, even backwards ;)

Mind, I'm lucky I can manage to tell even a true story forwards much of the time. Backwards? Oh, just sink my battle ship already!

~Deb said...

You know, I can't even do the alphabet backwards! My brother in law who's a cop made me take those DWI tests for fun and I tried the alphabet backwards and was STUMPED! (Some writer I think I am!)

Anyway, lying is so hard to detect because there are so many theories on how to detect them. Interesting article!

CrackerLilo said...

For some folks I know, it's dead easy--if their lips are moving!

Sid said...

I can almost always tell when someone is lying, especially to me, but just figured it was a weird sixth sense. Now I'm wondering if I'm just really good at picking up on those "leaks" in the facial muscles. Either way, I'm still gonna think I'm talented in that respect :)

traci said...

Wow. I'm pretty good at lie detecting just by listening to my gut but this would be interesting to test out on a few people!

Ms.L said...

I'm the worst liar,ever,lol.
Which is a good thing because I
don't even try anymore!
I watch people's faces a lot when they speak and can usually tell when something isn't right. It's become a bit of a game now!People
will lie about the silliest things..

Wanda's Wings said...

I try that on my kids.

~Just Me~ said...

I think its kind of funny the chronic liers, always get caught, they lie so much they forget what they've said.

therapydoc said...

I love this stuff. Trip people up. Make them suffer. Wait a minute.

I know, Deb, you wouldn't bother, you're an empath. You just know.

jumpinginpuddles said...

we seem to niow from instinct is that reliable probably not but to us it is

Dreaming again said...

I get frustrated with anything that uses facial expressions or body language to dectect the truth of what someone is saying. With myasthenia, my facial expressions aren't always up to what I'm feeling, my eyes don't always track together ..and I'm often supporting my head in odd positions ...either so I don't have to use my hand, or I've resorted to using my head in hand because the neck muscles have weakened.

MG, MS, Lupus, ALS, many of the diseases covered by the 40 diseases covered by the MDA, Post polio ... degenerative disk disease ... there are many invisible diseases that effect why a person might be unable to make proper 'body language' or facial expressions to follow 'appropriate' body language for these studies.

People get ahold of these studies and we, who are not the 'norm' get caught in the cross fire.

It all comes down to a little bit of knowlege ...

Deb said...

I hear ya!

LOL, your comment was so witty.

I have trouble with the backwards alphabet too. And with my shaky hands, I'd probably never pass the midline nose test thingy.

That is SO true. No testing needed.

I think I have an attunement like you. I can feel the lie sensorially and instictively too.

I think listening is a very important tool.

I'm not a good liar either. Sounds like you have great skills in looking, listening and interpreting.

Wanda's Wings,
Let us know if it works ;)

~Just Me,.
I know what you mean.

I think it's good to have a set of tools to help you out when relating to others. For some of us, this stuff comes easy. But for others, this could be a great way to help test for truthfulness.

I think ther are many who know right from the start who is trustworthy and who is not. There is a deep instinct/attuenment that is at work.

I think you make a most important point!!! I'd like to think that those who lie, manipulate, etc carry with them an air of deceit. Something you and many who experience such issues, do not. That would be the tipping point, imo.

Anonymous said...

The microexpressions research has been around for a while. Are you familiar with Eckman's work?

Rose said...

This is interesting, that is telling the story backwards. Wonder if I could do that!

Sarah said...

Dr Deb,

I have read over this post of yours here on Lying several times now. My unfortunate summer "duty" or "hobby" has been "looking" for missing 2 year old Orlando Toddler Caylee Anthony(google the name if unfamiliar with the news case). Her mother, 22 year old Casey, has been caught in lie after lie after lie in the child's disappearance. Can you comment on this woman/case and what may be here big problem with being such a "Stranger to the truth" as her own judge told her as he denied her a lower than $500,000 bond?? I would greatly appreciate your input, as will many other people around the world that love Caylee too.