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Spotting A Liar: Pamela Meyer Shares 7 Phrases That Should Raise Suspicion
Liespotting | January 18, 2013

Spotting A Liar: Pamela Meyer Shares 7 Phrases That Should Raise Suspicion

The next time you get the feeling someone is being dishonest with you, Pamela Meyer says there are cues to look for to catch them in a fib. Author of Liespotting: Proven Techniques to Detect Deception, Meyer has discovered that people who fudge the truth generally use certain patterns of speech that, if aware of, you can recognize. While there are certainly exceptions to these rules, Meyer says they are good to pick up on. (Check out these tips in more depth in her keynote).

1) Repetition: If someone repeats an entire question, then it's a good sign they might not be being completely honest. As Meyer's says in an interview, "restating the entire question is highly awkward and unnecessary," and usually means the person is buying more time to form their answer.

2) Avoiding Contractions: People who are lying tend to over-emphasize words unnecessarily to make it seem as though they are sincere. If someone tells you, "I would not" do that instead of saying they "wouldn't," it could be cause for concern.

3) Using Never When A No Would Suffice: Saying "I would never" do that rather than simply saying "No" is a liar's way of dodging a question and, again, adding dramatic emphasis where it is not necessary. Further, saying never is different than saying no. For example: "I would never cheat on you" doesn't necessarily mean the same thing as saying "I did not cheat on you."

4) Using Bolstering Statements: Again, overemphasizing innocence is generally a sign of not being innocent. Watch out for phrases like: "to tell you the truth," or "I swear to you."

5) Using Qualifying Statements: "As far as I know," or "the way I see it," can be a liar's way of bending the truth and not being totally upfront about what they know. This isn't always a dead giveaway, but overuse of these phrases should set off some alarms.

6) Changing The Subject: When someone says: "I don't want to talk about this," and then quickly veers the conversation in another direction, it can indicate that something suspicious is afoot.

7) Telling A Story In Chronological Order: Most people tend to tell a story as they remember it. However, when someone is being deceitful they want to keep their details straight and will often repeat a series of events in order of the time they occurred, instead.
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