When body language expert Janine Driver suspected her live-in boyfriend of cheating, she knew better than to make accusations. Although his habit of coming home at late hours in the morning roused her suspicion, she took her own approach to catch him in the act. “I asked him, ‘Why are you so late?’” she shares, “and he told me, ‘I was walking around M Street thinking about our future together.’ When he said that, I decided to come up with a lie of my own and said, ‘No wonder you’re late – I heard about the five-alarm fire at Urban Outfitters on M Street on the news. Is that what held you back?’ A truthful person would have said, ‘No, I was there, and there was no fire. What are you talking about?’ Instead, he paused – and liars will always have an uncomfortable pause – and then went on and on, making excuses. I told him to pack his stuff and get out of my life.”
While the five-alarm fire may not have been real, Driver’s methods of catching a liar are. In her new book, You Can’t Lie to Me: The Revolutionary Program to Supercharge Your Inner Lie Detector and Get to The Truth, released August 28, she shows how to spot a liar and get them to admit the truth. Her five-step program walks you through a ‘BS Barometer’ to help you detect those who lie to you. Following Driver’s steps, you can learn to read people, avoid unfaithful partners, keep your children from lying to you, hire people you can trust or even keep yourself from getting swindled out of money. Driver even uses her expertise to train police officers to read body language while in the field.
We were able to speak to the author herself and gain some tips on how spotting a lie can help your relationship.
What are some simple body language cues?
We all wear different masks in different situations, but body language can tell you if someone’s holding back. If you ask a man if he’s married, and he says, “no” and shrugs his shoulders, there’s more to the story. A shoulder shrug is uncertainty – it doesn’t mean he’s married, but it means he’s uncomfortable with marriage, either through his own experiences or ones he’s witnessed. Ask him a question like ‘Is there any reason why marriage would make you uncomfortable?’ and you’ll get the full story.
What are some situations you’ve been in where body language has helped or benefited you?
Everything – from parent-teacher conferences, to meeting my husband on Match.com, to working with my son. I say, from the boardroom to the bedroom to the barroom, just knowing what question you have to ask is how to get what you want. The key to using the successful ‘You Can’t Lie to Me’ program is thinking like a detective. A simple question like ‘Is there any reason why…?’ can make someone give up on a lie and win you the truth without an argument.
What are some ways you can catch an untrustworthy partner?
You have to figure out when your partner has changed their baseline or behavior in some way. If they’re avoiding looking at you or, on the other hand, are looking at you all the time, you should be suspicious. A change in behavior will tell you if they’re hiding something from you or not, and the tools to approaching that are in the book.
In what ways can being able to read lies help you with your love life? How do you use lie detection to strengthen a relationship?
You can get real: you get to know what your partner’s concerns are and what he likes or doesn’t like and vice versa. When you hold back secrets from people who are important, that’s toxic to your relationship. You need to flip the script on your intention: focus on ridiculous amounts of transparency, honesty, hope and kindness. When you can spot deception in people and approach it well – knowing how to ask the right questions – you can make your relationship stronger. It can stop your husband before he cheats or stop your kids before they go down the wrong path. The people who tend to be the best at deception are the people who tend to be the most trustworthy.
Ask people to tell the truth in advance, and the likelihood that they’ll tell the truth will skyrocket. Starting off with a statement like, “I’m going to ask you a few questions, and I want you to tell the truth” works better than saying “Don’t lie to me.” We never hear the word don’t – we only hear the command “lie to me,” so we will lie. The best thing you can do is to say, “Whether you tell me the truth or not” – make sure you pause here – “I’ll still love you, and we’ll get through this together.” You’ve told them to tell the truth, and that sets you up for romantic success.
To learn how to tap into your own inner lie detector, you can buy ‘You Can’t Lie to Me: The Revolutionary Program to Supercharge Your Inner Lie Detector and Get to the Truth’ on Amazon. Be sure to check out Janine Driver’s Web site and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.
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