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Why People Lie | Reasons for Lying | Paul Ekman Group

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https://www.paulekman.com/blog/why-people-lie/

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Why People Lie | Reasons for Lying | Paul Ekman Group
"I thought I was only going 55 miles an hour officer" claims the driver speeding at 70 mph. "My wristwatch stopped so I had no idea that I got home 2 hours after my curfew", says the teenager.

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Reasons for serious lies

  • To avoid punishment. These lies are told when there is a threat of loss if the lie is uncovered. 
  • Concealing a benefit. These lies are told to conceal the reward obt...

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Telling trivial lies

  • The thrill of it all. Some people lie to see if they can get away with it.
  • Avoiding embarrassment. People tell untruths to get out of an awkward social situation.

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Types of lies

Types of lies
  • White Lies. People tell white lies claiming to be tactful or polite.
  • Broken Promises. Failure to keep one’s spoken commitment or promise.
  • The Lie of ...

Narcissists are often pathological liars

Narcissists lack empathy, so telling the truth does not matter to them. They may not even realize they are lying most of the time, because they are not aware of it.

Don't ma...

Compulsive liars are not necessarily bad people

Compulsive liars are often too careless to tell the truth. They don't take the time to think things through.

Although it is really hard to break this habit, they need to learn to control their urge to lie.  

Philosophy and truth

We think philosophy has a role to play in identifying and correcting the disconnect between perception and reality with regard to politicians’ trustworthiness. By providing a theory of lying and tr...

Augustine on lying

Augustine (354-430) was one of the first to define a lie explicitly as the intent to deceive.

Augustine argues that lying is not permissible regardless of the circumstances that provoked the lie.

Kant on lying

Kant defines a lie as an “intentionally untruthful declaration”.

Kant identifies truthfulness as an utterance that accurately represents one’s thoughts (including one’s beliefs), regardless of whether those thoughts are themselves accurate.
Kant argues that lying is not permissible, but he allows for engaging in deception through careful word choice or evasion.

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Living with integrity

It's far better to be yourself and risk having people not like you than to suffer the stress and tension that comes from pretending to be someone you’re not, or professing to like something that yo...

People pleasing

It's the process of trying to guess what other people want and what will make them like us, and then acting accordingly.

It's actually a way of manipulating people's perceptions of us.

We're not that good at pretending

We don’t actually fool anyone when we're trying to look happy, but our real feelings are far from positive.

Our expressions expose us and are registered and mirrored by other people. So trying to suppress negative emotions actually increases stress levels of both people more than if we had shared our distress in the first place.

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The prevalent theory of dishonesty

From a legal perspective, dishonesty is the idea of cost-benefit analysis. When people think about being dishonest, they wonder what can be gained or what can be lost. If the cost of lying is too h...

The slippery slope

People often feel the need to rationalize their dishonesty. The danger is taking that first step.

The story of Joe Papp, an Olympic cyclist falls into this category. Papp consulted his physician, who wrote Papp a prescription for erythropoietin (EPO), a cancer treatment that increases the production of red blood cells. Papp injected himself, but also imported and distributed EPO to his team and to other teams. This essentially made him a drug dealer.

Morals or ethics tilt behaviors 

People that are required to put their signature at the top of a document instead of the bottom are more likely to provide truthful information.

They are confirming that the information they’re about to provide is true before they have a chance to falsify it.

More than 20 million Americans...

More than 20 million Americans...

...practice yoga, making it one of the most popular forms of exercise.

Yoga and other forms of exercise

Although the research on yoga is still weak, based on the available findings, Yoga is probably just as good for your health as many other forms of exercise. 

It seems particularly promising for improving lower back pain and — crucially — reducing inflammation in the body.

Unclear benefits of Yoga

There is no certainty whether some forms of yoga are better than others, whether yoga should be prescribed to people for various health conditions, and how yoga compares with other forms of exercise. 

There's also no good evidence behind many of the supposed health benefits of yoga, like flushing out toxins and stimulating digestion.

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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 ave...

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.

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.

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Analyze vs. speculate

Assuming folded arms are a sign of lying behavior is speculation. 

Instead, consider whether the behavior is a result of your question, or possibly just nervousness.

Manage your bias

Deceptive people can flood you with truthful answers and make you believe that they are good people. 

Filter through all the information that is meant to deceive you to get to the real untruths.

Recognize evasiveness

A deceptive person will talk around the issue without actually answering the initial question. 

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Ideologies ≠ Ideologues

Ideologies ≠ Ideologues

Ideologies: ideas that, disguised as science or philosophy, claim to explain the complexity of the world and offer remedies that will perfect it.

Ideologues: people who pretend ...

Virtue ≠ Virtue Signaling

Jordan Peterson observed that virtues aim for balance and to avoid the extremes of the vices. Cultivating judgment about the difference between virtue and vice is the beginning of wisdom.

Modern relativism asserts judging how to live is impossible, because good and virtue are relative. Thus relativism’s version of “virtue” is “tolerance.” This leads to people broadcasting their tolerance as a form of self-promotion, and secret vice, which is also known as virtue signaling.

Order and Chaos

Order is where the people around you act according to the established social norms, remaining predictable and cooperative. Society is simultaneously structure and oppression.

Chaos is where the unexpected happens. 

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Replace Self-Criticism

Our brains automatically look for evidence that matches up with what we believe about ourselves, but often disregards other evidence to the contrary.

To break this automatic tendency, ...

Talk Back

Talking back to your inner critic is an important part of taking away its power. 

Telling the critic you don’t want to hear what it has to say begins to give you a sense of choice in the matter. 

Separate The Critic From You

Self-criticism isn’t innate to us, it’s internalized based on outside influences, such as other people’s criticism, expectations, or standards. It’s a habit that can be unlearned or controlled.

One way to separate yourself from the self-criticism is to give it a name. Doing so, you better positioned to free yourself from its influence.

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