It is possible to tell when someone is lying to you. Though, hopefully, it could just be nervousness, there are a few red flags that you could keep an eye out for. Any significant combination of the following tells just might show you the truth about the person in front of you.
1. Voice Change
If their voice or general demeanor changes dramatically, this is definitely a sign of discomfort—and quite possibly a lie.
2. Psychological Distance
Are they going out of their way to avoid saying “I” or “me”? It could be that, consciously or not, they’re trying to put distance between themselves and the lie they’re telling.
3. Too Many Right Answers
This may sound counterintuitive, but if someone has an answer for absolutely everything, you might be a bit suspicious. Most people need to pause to think about their answer to unexpected questions—at least every once in a while. If someone is parroting answers that seem rehearsed and polished and super quick off the cuff? That could be an indication of a lie.
4. “I Swear”
If the person is proclaiming his or her honestly continuously (“to tell the truth…,” “to be perfectly honest…,” etc.) then they doth protest too much. Actually honest people simply tell the truth without having to broadcast that they’re doing so.
If the person changes their head position rapidly, or can’t stay still, or starts breathing differently, these are all great physical tells that you might be getting fibbed at—especially if they cover their mouth or shuffle their feet or instinctively cover sensitive body parts. Watch the body language for all these clues.
6. Difficulty Speaking
If you watch police confession videos, it sometimes seems like the perp has a hard time getting his or her words out. This is due to an autonomic nervous system reaction that dries the mouth in times of stress. Lip biting and lip pursing aren’t good signs either.
7. No Blinking
Normal people blink every few seconds. People who are lying might be going overboard to prove they’re maintaining solid eye contact with you by staring a little too strong or too much.
Literally, you are making this person sweat. If they’re stewing this badly, then chances are they aren’t telling you the truth.