Don’t be DUPED: Lying HANDS Give it AWAY!

Let’s say you’re listening to a person tell a story, but the more the other person talks, the more his/her story just doesn’t make sense or add up?  Should you believe or not believe?

Observe the entire body, including the HANDS.  What are the hands doing (or not doing) as the speaker is describing the events?  Compare the speaker’s hand gestures to his/her normal or baseline hand gestures.

Are the hands illustrative and in-synch with the verbal narrative?  Do the hands flow naturally with the elements of the story?

Or, are the hands restricted and not moving at all?

Hmmmm…,  begin…, to wonder why…,

Research indicates that during deception, a higher % of people DECREASE their hand movements.

Hand Gestures During Deception Chart

If the person is lying, it could be that his/her brain is trying to juggle and interweave FIBS with FACTS and not be FOUND-OUT as liars.

The brain scrambles to put together a believable lie.  This creates cognitive load and overload on the brain and the body.

When more energy is focused on concocting a lie, the body has less truth-based natural movement and flow.

If the other person’s body looks stiff and the hands look restricted and un-natural, then dig deeper to investigate reasons why.

Pointed Finger

Decrease in hand movements may point to deception.   

Don’t be DUPED.


What’s at stake in the situation?

The higher the stakes or rewards, the more the person may be motivated to lie in order to get the desired and avoid the undesired outcome.

People may think that increased finger and hand movements signify lying, but other factors such as increased nervousness, tension, stress, worry, or fear may be contributing to the increase.

During deception, it’s more likely that there will be less finger and hand movement.

Get to the TRUTH with the POWER of Accurate Body Language.

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Janette Ghedotte, CEO Truth-Expert
Accurate Body Language LLC

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Vrij, A., & Semin, G.  (1996).  Lie experts’ beliefs about nonverbal indicators of deception.  Journal of Nonverbal Behavior, 20(1), 65-80. DOI: 10.1007/BF02248715.

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