Everyone lies. Whether it’s a “little white lie” to spare someone’s feelings or an outright deception, we’ve all been guilty of telling a fib at one time or another. But what about the people who make a habit of lying? The ones who seem to spin tales out of thin air on a regular basis? How can you tell if someone is lying to you? Fortunately, there are some telltale signs that can help you spot a liar. Here are five ways to tell if someone is lying to to you:

Body Language

One of the easiest ways to tell if someone is lying is to pay attention to their body language. Are they making eye contact? Are their arms crossed? Are they fidgeting? Liars often have trouble maintaining eye contact and may try to avoid it altogether. They may also cross their arms in an effort to protect themselves. And, they may start fidgeting as they try to come up with a convincing story.

Inconsistencies in Their Story

Another way to tell if someone is lying is to listen for inconsistencies in their story. If they’re changing their story or leaving out key details, chances are they’re not being truthful. Pay close attention to what they’re saying and see if it matches up with what you know or have been able to verify.

Getting Defensive

People who are telling the truth usually don’t get defensive when questioned. On the other hand, people who are lying may become defensive, especially if you start asking them a lot of questions. If someone starts getting angry or tries to turn the tables on you, chances are they’re not being honest.

Too Much Information

Sometimes liars will give you more information than you need in an effort to make their story more believable. They may also fill in gaps with made-up details that you didn’t even ask about. So, if someone seems like they’re giving you too much information, it could be because they’re trying to cover up the fact that they’re not being truthful.

Overly Specific Details

Likewise, liars may try to make their story more believable by giving overly specific details. They may give you a play-by-play of everything that happened, even though you didn’t ask for that level of detail. So, if someone’s story seems overly detailed, it could be because they’re making it up as they go along.

These are just a few ways to tell if someone is lying to you. Of course, there’s no surefire way to know for sure whether or not someone is being truthful— but paying attention to these signs can help you get a better sense of whether or not something doesn’t quite add up.

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