As we’ve already know, telling lies doesn’t make people’s noses grow like Pinocchio’s, but there are plenty of other ways to spot a fibber. The trick isn’t in learning to detect falsehoods but in spotting the clues that folks are telling the truth, says behavioral analyst Stan B. Walters. Just look for two or three of the following truth-telling signs the next time you ask someone a question. If you don’t see them, then take the answer with a grain of salt.
Calm demeanor — People who are honest feel cool and confident and answer without extraneous bodily motion. Tension gives liars excess energy and provokes fidgeting — especially tweaking an ear, rubbing their nose or touching their throat.
The eyes have it — Truth-tellers maintain a steady gaze because they’re focused on giving you the facts. Liars look away, close their eyes or blink rapidly.
Leaning — People who lean toward you are telling the truth 90 percent of the time, say psychologists. “When people lie, they feel uncomfortable so they unconsciously move away,” says an FBI expert.
Good timing — You can count on folks who answer in five seconds or less. Seven seconds is all a liar needs to come up with a whopper.
Talking the talk — Honest people speak in an even tone of voice, without wildly varying their pitch or getting tongue-tied. Stress makes liars breathe harder and affects their speech.