In the past, we've shown you how to be an effective liar. But it's important to not fall into the traps of others - especially those that lie to us most often. Here's how to tell when a CEO or a politician's making false promises.
It's Evil Week at Lifehacker, which means we're looking into less-than-seemly methods for getting shit done. We like to think we're shedding light on these tactics as a way to help you do the opposite, but if you are, in fact, evil, you might find this week unironically helpful. That's up to you.
Todd Kashdan over at Psychology Today goes through some of the most telltale signs of a lie, and we've visited some of them before: most notably raising the emotional stakes and avoidance of the first person, but possibly the most counter-intuitive is the use of confident statements:
Be wary of absolute certainty. This might be the most valuable take-home finding. Not surprisingly, we feel less anxious when leaders appear confident without any ambivalence about their decisions. The only problem is that few decisions are clear cut and none of us know what the future holds in terms of the economic and political climate.
I only worry about people who claim they know what is going to happen. I worry about people that lack anxiety. CEO's that use an overabundance of words reflecting absolute confidence and a lack of words reflecting hesitation are more likely to be lying.
As always, not only will this help you stay more informed about the lies some crooked officials may tell, but also help you better craft your own lies, on those occasions it becomes a necessary evil. Hit the link to read more on the clues to uncovering other people's lies.
Clues to When CEOs and Politicians Are Lying to You [Psychology Today]