Hey there, Steve here and welcome to this week’s private eye post. Last week I covered some of the more obvious body language signs of a cheating spouse or partner. Today we’re going to look at how you can spot a lie from someone by paying close attention to their speech.
This means it’s possible to tell if someone is lying when you’re talking to them on the phone. And if you’re face to face, you can add this to your arsenal of lie detection tools. If the body language and speech are congruent with a lie, then the percentage chance that you’re right will increase.
Disclaimer: As always, the information in this post is general information only and may not apply to everybody. For that reason, if you need help with an individual situation, please contact us or use the live chat feature on this page. Your first call is free, and I may be to put your mind at rest on that call. If not, I’ll let you know a recommended course of action, the cost involved and answer all your questions. Everything you say is treated in the strictest privacy and confidence.
#1 Where Did THAT Voice Come From?
When someone lies, physical changes happen within their body – their heart rate increases, blood pressure rises, as they experience a feeling of nervousness. Vocal cords usually tighten and saliva dries up, which can result in the liar speaking in a higher pitch than usual and throat clearing because of the dryness.
#2 Keyword Highlighting
When we record people as part of our work, I get the audio transcribed with 100% accuracy. Then I go through the transcription and highlight specific words which are indicative of liars, and that’s why I call this “Keyword Highlighting”.
You don’t necessarily have to transcribe your conversations. You can just listen for the keywords, and if you hear them frequently, then there’s a much higher chance the person you’re talking to is lying.
What are the keywords?
Words or phrases such as ‘honestly’, ‘truthfully’, ‘well to tell the truth’, ‘well’, ‘actually’ and things like ‘you’re never going to believe’.
Also, there will be a higher frequency of the words ‘no’, ‘never’ and ‘none’.
And you’ll get lots more stalling exclamations such as ‘ah’, ‘um’ and ‘er’.
#3 Contractions, Baby
Contractions are words such as isn’t, doesn’t, won’t, wasn’t, and didn’t. Most people when they’re talking always use contractions.
However, when people are lying, they want to emphasise what they’re saying because they think it helps make them look more honest, and so they use the full two words.
The most famous example is Bill Clinton’s “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.”
#4 Gimme Some Distance
Think of a lie as a physical object and the liar someone who wants to get as far away as possible from it. In their speech, this translates to liars being far less likely to use the words “I,” “me,” and “mine,” as well as any other way to avoid the lie.
In Bill Clinton’s example: “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.”, he also distances himself from Monica Lewinsky by calling her ‘that woman’, which is a common form of this ‘distancing.’
If he’d said “I didn’t have sex with Monica Lewinsky”, he’d have been far more believable to a trained lie spotter.
Most of us aren’t good at lying because it doesn’t feel right and so it affects the way we talk substantially. Armed with these four primary methods of speech lie detection, it’s usually possible to accurately determine if someone is lying.
The short video below also highlights some further ways to help you spot a liar.
Follow us on Facebook for more information on lie detection and how to get help if you think you need to.
Until next week,