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Lying Body Language: 5 Body Language Signs That People Are Lying to You

Updated on March 29, 2012

Lying Body Language Signs

Spotting lying body language is critical for assessing the trustworthiness of a person. By being able to detect when people are lying to you, you’ll minimize your risk of being cheated.

Each day you make potentially life-changing decisions based on facts. There are five common lying body language signs you need to look out for. Hone your lie-detection skills and you’ll greatly improve your odds of success.

Most people know that body language can tell a lot about a person, but very few know how to tap into this “secret language” to uncover the truth.

People that are closest to you will exhibit clearer lying body language signs. People you see frequently, such as family members, close friends and colleagues in particular. However, by being vigilant, you’ll also learn to spot these lying body language signs in complete strangers.

1. Overly Talkative:

Does the person seem to be saying a lot more than usual? Did your daughter just return from a “friend’s house” and is describing intimate details, which she wouldn’t ordinarily do?

Liars will often go into a lot of detail in hope of sounding more convincing. However to the trained ear, this along with other lying body language signs is a clear confirmation of deceit.

2. Trembling Voice or Nervousness:

A person’s voice is a key to lying body language. When talking honestly, most people will feel quite comfortable or relaxed.

If you notice the person being more nervous than usual, incoherent or starting to stutter, this can be a dead giveaway the person is hiding something.

Lying is a very unnatural expression and many people will feel visibly uneasy about telling lies. Observing the tension in a person’s voice is a clear sign of lying body language.

3. Use of Contractions:

Listening to the way a person speaks says a lot more about then than the words coming out of their mouth. This lying body language technique is not widely known, so that’s why it is imperative to master.

People who are telling the truth will often use contractions, such as “won’t, can’t, don’t” when they speak. Those telling lies on the other hand will often use full equivalents like “will not, can not, do not.”

4. Defensiveness:

If asked a question, is the person trying to shrug off a serious question by responding with a joke?

If they’re trying to make light of a serious question, it’s a strong signs the person isn’t being truthful and is trying to deflect the heat. If the person looks visibly uneasy or restless, their lying body language is a dead giveaway they’re not being honest.

5. Lack of Eye Contact:

Not everyone feels comfortable maintaining eye contact when talking to others. However, when someone’s lying, the awkwardness of eye contact is magnified.

They may deliberately avoid your gaze, or shift their focus noticeably away from your eyes. This is a prime example of lying body language. Spotting this indicates a very high likelihood they’re lying.


Download your copy of Top 7 Persuasive Secrets Most People Will Never Know and find out How to Persuade People and become a human lie-detector.

Learn How to Tell When People Are Lying to You by observing the vital clues that confirm lies.

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    • James Peters profile image

      James Timothy Peters 5 years ago from Hammond, Indiana

      Awesome article.

      My father being a former police officer, uses these techniques that you have described here to this day.

      A wonderful and informative read...good times!

    • JKenny profile image

      James Kenny 5 years ago from Birmingham, England

      Some very interesting tips, especially using contractions, will definitely pay more attention to the way people speak. I must admit, I'm often guilty of being defensive when asked a question, so that's something to work on. Voted up etc.

    • HowToPersuade profile image
      Author

      HowToPersuade 5 years ago from Australia

      Au Fait: Thank you, appreciate your positive support. Do let me know if you have any other questions or if I can help at all with your studies.

      Seeker7: Thank you for stopping by, I appreciate the support. Yes there are many small signs which when combined together paint a true picture and really help to detect lies.

      It takes practice and the more you observe the better you'll become at picking up these small clues.

    • Seeker7 profile image

      Helen Murphy Howell 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland

      What a fabulous hub! There's quite a few things I didn't know about lying and body language such as not using constractions and being over talkative. I will need to be observant and see if I can pick any of this up!

      Voted up + awesome + interesting!

    • Au fait profile image

      C E Clark 5 years ago from North Texas

      This is a very interesting hub. This book you have written and are promoting sounds interesting too. I'm a Psyc major with a main interest in social psychology, which deals with why people behave the way they do. So I'm especially interested on your take of body language and how people behave when trying to convince someone of a falsehood.

      Well written. Voting you UP and useful. Welcome to Hubpages!