All About Deception

Studies show that the average person lies several times a day. Some of those are biggies (“I’ve always been faithful to you,”) but more often, they are little white lies (“Of course that dress looks good on you!”) Some forms of deception aren’t exactly lies—  like combovers or nodding when you’re not really listening. And then there are lies we tell ourselves for reasons that run the gamut, from healthy maintenance of self-esteem to serious delusions beyond our control. 

Recent posts on Deception

Eyebrows May Flash Veracity

Eyebrow flash rate determines the difference between a friendly eyebrow flash and a deceptive eyebrow flash.

Are Illusory Agreements The New Trend?

Navigating the treacherous waters created by attorneys for whom the practice of law is nothing more than a game to be won is no easy feat.

Online Dating Photo Fraud: The Person Behind the Profile

Online daters with attractive photos are both distrusted and desired.
Public domain

The Healing Power of Placebos: Fact or Fiction?

By Joe Pierre M.D. on May 25, 2017 in Psych Unseen
Does new research really prove that placebos don't require deception?

Games Master Manipulators Play: Boundary Blindness

How to know when your personal boundaries are being crossed, and what to do about it.

Millennial Duck Syndrome

By Caroline Beaton on May 20, 2017 in The Gen-Y Guide
When entrepreneurship wasn't as effortless as I first thought, I felt like I'd failed.

Growing Up in a False Reality

Seeking artificial validation not only results in addictive, destructive behaviors, it also displaces the very experiences that would otherwise offer us authentic validation.

The Psychology of Hoaxing

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on May 18, 2017 in In Excess
Hoaxing behaviour is nothing new but there are many types that may or may not have serious consequences for individuals. But what do we know about the psychology of hoaxing?

How Can We Tell Whether Comey's Firing Was Justified?

It's hard to parse complex political accusations. Behavioral science provides a few easy tips on how to do so!
Shutterstock

The Real Reason Meetings are Unproductive

By Al Pittampalli on May 11, 2017 in Are You Persuadable?
The psychological explanation for mediocre meetings may surprise you.

People Wrongly Gauge How Much They're Observed By Others

By Romeo Vitelli Ph.D. on May 10, 2017 in Media Spotlight
How invisible do you really feel when you are people watching? New research explores the invisibility cloak illusion and what it can mean in social situations
used with permission from iclipart.com

Munchausen by Proxy or Con Artist Mom?

The tragic story of Gypsy and Dee Blanchare is set to air as an HBO documentary on May 15. Here's a look at the law and psychology behind a case of medical child abuse and murder.
K. Ramsland

H. H. Holmes: Exhumations and Expectations

As we await the results of the high-profile exhumation of H. H. Holmes, we might not want this mystery solved.

The Devil's Downsizing

Are all downsizings and divorces inherently nasty? Some leaders pretend. Twenty-First Century Aerospace is a dastardly company with a smiley face. Sound familiar? What's your take?
Darlene Lancer

Are You Being Manipulated?

Manipulation is veiled influence or hostility that may seem benign, friendly, or flattering. It can be hard to detect and know how to respond, unless you can spot the signs.

A Psychology of Conspiracy Theory

By Kirby Farrell Ph.D. on April 25, 2017 in A Swim in Denial
Conspiracy theories used to be kooky inventions homemade in somebody’s mental garage. Now they’re tools in mainstream contests for power.

Site Hardening: Predator-Proof Your Home

Your home is a sanctuary of safety and security. Fortify your walls with common sense and perception. While most of your neighbors are safe, be on alert for those who are not.

How Behavioral Science Can Help Truth Triumph Over Lies

Worried about deceptive political coverage by the media? This article shows how you can take steps to fix this problem!

Is Prescribing a Placebo the Same as Lying?

By Joseph A. Shrand M.D. on April 18, 2017 in The I-M Approach
Is it ever OK to lie? The placebo response is well known. But prescribing a placebo borders on unethical in our age of informed consent. But are placebos happening all the time?
used with permission from iclipart.com

Which Is "Crazier?"

How does a forensic psychologist tease out the mind of a criminal defendant at the time he committed it? Debunking one myth - and investigating one source - at a time.

Why Your Lover Is Lying to You

Why do intimate partners deceive each other? There are some common and logical reasons.

On Raising an Honest Child

How do we teach our kids to be honest, even if it means admitting to breaking the rules? Research on children's lying behavior might be able to provide us with some helpful hints.

Money Laundering for the Soul

By Noam Shpancer Ph.D. on April 05, 2017 in Insight Therapy
What explains our ability to suspend our moral principles and inflict cruelty on others, in clear violation of the moral principles we claim to espouse?
Simon & Schuster

Pseudocide: The Art of Faking Your Death

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on April 04, 2017 in Shadow Boxing
Writer explores those who want to fake their deaths, those who hunt them down, those who fail and those who succeed. Everything you want to know but were afraid to ask.

Addiction and Self-Deception

Why do addicts hold on to false beliefs about their use?

The Brain Science of Political Deception in the Election

Confused by why so many people were deceived in the 2016 election? This article uses recent research to provide some clarity.

Why Do Teens Lie? Part 1

Lying has many shades of gray. Kids are good at it.

Making Sense of FBI Director James Comey's Testimony

By Joe Navarro M.A. on March 27, 2017 in Spycatcher
Too often we talk about politicians talking to Russian as though there were no threat—there is always a threat with Putin in charge.

In Defense of Language

It is critical that we respect our only means of making sense of our world.

Facts, Truths, Beliefs, Opinions, and "Alternative Facts"

By Clifford N Lazarus Ph.D. on March 25, 2017 in Think Well
In this time of "alternative facts," it's helpful to understand that a "fact" is a fact precisely because the "alternatives" have been disproven!