deepstash

Beta

Deepstash brings you key ideas from the most inspiring articles like this one:

Read more efficiently

Save what inspires you

Remember anything

Why We Lie: The Science Behind Our Deceptive Ways

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2017/06/lying-hoax-false-fibs-science/

nationalgeographic.com

Why We Lie: The Science Behind Our Deceptive Ways
Honesty may be the best policy, but scheming and dishonesty are part of what makes us human.

4

Key Ideas

Save all ideas

To lie is human

To lie is human
  • Lying is something that most people are very practiced in. We lie in big and small ways, to strangers, co-workers, friends, and loved ones.
  • Researchers found that people lie on average one or two times a day, mostly to hide inadequacies or to protect others' feelings.
  • Many lie and deceive to gain unjust rewards.
  • Sometimes people lie to inflate their image or to cover up bad behavior.
  • Even science contains deceivers, such as physicist Jan Hendrik Schön, who claimed a breakthrough in molecular semiconductor research, which later proved to be fraudulent.

331 SAVES

1.68k READS

VIEW

Lying increases with maturity

The increase in lying is driven by the development of the ability to see the world from someone else's perspective. We gain an understanding of the beliefs, intentions, and knowledge of others.

The more we lie, the easier it becomes. Among two-year-olds, only 30 percent are untruthful. Among three-year-olds, 50 percent lie. By eight, kids learn to mask their lying by deliberately giving a wrong answer or making their statement seem like a guess.

321 SAVES

1.37k READS

Why we limit our lies

We like to see ourselves as honest because we have internalized honesty as a value taught to us. We generally place limits on how much we are willing to lie.

308 SAVES

1.21k READS

Trust and vulnerability

To navigate the world, we need to trust human communication implicitly, otherwise we would be paralyzed and cease to have social relationships. But we have to be aware of some facts:

  • We don't expect lies and are not continually searching for lies, giving liars an advantage.
  • We are more prone to falsehoods from people of wealth, power, and status.
  • We are very prone to accepting lies that affirm our worldview.
  • People are more likely to believe familiar information. Even if the information turns out to be false, we may continue to lean towards it.

However, we get so much from believing, that there is little harm when we occasionally get deceived.

349 SAVES

1.26k READS

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Lies Motivated By Compassion

When we decide to lie, we privilege some other value over honesty. The value is often compassion, as people lie more about their feelings than about anything else. 

Those who tell...

Lies Motivated By Desire for Material Gain

When a desire for material gain motivates lying, the consequences are likely to be negative. 
One factor that prevents people from lying for personal gain is the need/desire to see oneself as a moral person. 

Desire to Maintain a Positive Self-Concept

  • People sometimes lie to themselves or others out of a need to see themselves positively. 
  • People often experience greater positive emotions when exaggerating their intelligence or skill to themselves or others.
  • Liars driven by the desire to see themselves positively can forget that their dishonesty contributed to their success. Consequently, they may make misguided bets about their future performance. 

Body Language

Body Language

While body language cues can offer clues to deceptions, it is often not good enough. More accurate signals are:

  • Intentionally leaving out important details.
  • If the p...

Ask Them to Tell Their Story in Reverse

The passive process of observing a potential liar's body language and facial expressions to spot lies is limited.

Adopt a more active approach by asking the individual to relate their story in reverse order rather than chronological order.

Trust Your Instincts

People often rely on stereotypical behaviors that are often associated with lying such as fidgeting or shifty eyes. But these signs are simply old wives' tales.

Your first gut reactions might be more accurate than any conscious lie detection you might attempt.

Honesty As A Blind Spot

Honesty As A Blind Spot

Since man started observing human behaviour, our focus has been on the studies done on deception, morality, and lying. In the last fifty years, almost no study or research has been carried out on

Lying Is Becoming Mainstream

As lies morph into a common, accepted standard, our attention (and obsession) is with guilt, fakeness, deceit and manipulation.

Human beings, according to countless behavioural studies, lie when they know they can get away with it, or when they see other people lie, and even when we are in groups, where we tend to mimic the others(herd mentality).

Dishonesty As a Global Currency

In any social setting, lies keep the world from falling apart, becoming the real global currency:

  • Organizations and their employees routinely lie to preserve identity, protect the reputation of an individual or group
  • In relationships, one lies to spare the other from feeling bad, or to avoid an awkward situation.
  • We lie to ourselves and consistently believe we are smarter or better looking that we really are.
  • We lie on social media.