Deception Tip 64 - How To Detect Deception - A Guide To Deception - Author Spencer Coffman

Deception Tip 64:

In some cases, liars may rephrase the question and then answer it. This is done to give them more time to think about their lie.


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Podcast Transcript

Hello and welcome to the Deception Tips podcast, where you will learn amazing cues to detect deceit that will help you read people like never before. I’m your host and Spencer Coffman, let’s get started.

Hello and welcome to Deception Tips podcast episode number 64. The last time, we spoke of a behavior that happens on the lips, we talked about a kind of primate creature and how humans sometimes make their lips look like those dudes when they are lying. 

It is an attempt to pacify themselves or release some stress or tension because as you know, stress and tension are very popular when people lie.

When they lie, they are under tremendous amounts of stress and tension, don’t believe me? Go out there and try to tell a lie to your boss, a big lie, or your parents or something like that, and see if you don’t feel a little different or a little awkward. 

Then obviously make sure you straighten out the situation and say it was a social experiment and then you will know that when people lie, they are very stressed and tense.

If that isn’t enough, take a look at all the evidence we’ve discussed and all of the things that happen when people lie, and they are all symptoms of your body being stressed and tense. 

So, we spoke of ‘Chimpanzee Lips’ last week and how when people are lying, they may exhale or push their lips out a little bit more like a chimpanzee. That also went along with another tip that we spoke of quite a while ago when they might pop up their cheeks like a pufferfish or a blowfish and then exhale through pursed lips and this was back in episode 46.

Overall, we’ve had quite a few different lip episodes, to hear them all you’ll have to listen to last week’s episode where I recapped them. You can really understand that the lips are a popular place for lying and among bodily leakage or deception leakage where the unconscious leaks that nonverbal behavior. They are because that is a central point when you talk to someone, you’re most likely watching the eyes, the lips, or the face.

The conscious really does its best to try to hide micro-expressions and other things muscularly on the face. However, the lips are something that it doesn’t quite do as good of a job with because we have to breathe, we have to speak, and we need our lips to do both. 

We really don’t need our lips to breathe, but it’s part of the breathing process, so it goes unnoticed by the conscious because it is primarily an unconscious behavior.

Breathing is already unconscious, so it’s very easy for the unconscious to get away with leakage in breathing or in actions related to breathing because the conscious already knows that it’s going on. 

It’s unconscious, I don’t have to mess with breathing, so then some little deception leakage can get slipped right into the breathing patterns and the unconscious doesn’t even notice, so that’s that.

Today we are switching gears, we’re going to talk about a tip related to speaking and voice. Now, we’ve had quite a few of these already, we’ve talked about them several times over the course of our 64 episodes of the Deception Tips podcast, but you probably already know what this episode is about. Hopefully, you’ve read the books, you’ve checked out the blog, etc.

Today, we are talking about how liars will use a stalling tactic to give themselves a little bit more time to think about and plan their lie. Something is important to mention here that they aren’t really buying more time to think about and plan their lie because chances are their lie has already been thought about, it is already been planned. What they are doing is giving themselves a little bit extra time to calm down so that they can deliver their lie.

It is buying extra time, they are thinking about the lie, but they’re not prepping it. What they’re doing is taking a breath, calming down, getting ready to deliver that lie, and giving themselves a little bit of a mental break or a little bit of a breather, so that they can do that properly and effectively according to them. 

This amount of time isn’t really a lot, it’s maybe a second or two, but nonetheless, it really helps out unconsciously and consciously in the mind to give them that breather.

So, here it is, this is deception tip number 64. In some cases, liars may rephrase the question and then answer it. This is done to give them more time to think about their lie. Here it is again, deception tip number 64. In some cases, liars may rephrase the question and then answer it. This is done to give them more time to think about their lie.

Something is important to say here, again, they’re not thinking of planning their lie, but they’re thinking about it. So, if they’ve prepped this lie and they’re really nervous about it, obviously they’re stressed, they’re tense, things are going on and they are planning and preparing and all of this stuff, and they get up to the point of delivery and they freeze, they stopped, they don’t know what to do.

So, someone asked them the question and what they do in order to help get the thing flowing, like when you have a dead battery or your car isn’t working properly and you say, we just got to get it going. 

So, you start to roll it and then you roll-start your car, similar concepts, you’re just starting to roll their minds, so they repeat that question, which then gets them going.

Now they’re starting to talk, they’re getting in, they’re loosening up, they’re easing and boom they can just go right in with their lie. So, that’s something to watch for when they repeat the question and then answer it, we know something’s going on. It is some sort of a stalling or delaying tactic.

As I said, we’ve talked about this in a similar manner before and it was quite a while ago, it was deception tip number 43 ‘Repeat the Questions’. So, today we’re on, ‘Rephrase the Question’ then we were on ‘Repeat the Question’. This specifically states that a liar will use stalling tactics such as asking for the question to be repeated or rephrased.

So, in this instance, the liar is not doing the repeating or the rephrasing, they’re asking for the repeat or the rephrased such as, could you repeat the question? Something like that, because now they are getting another three or four seconds while someone repeats the question. 

Then they get a pause of a couple of seconds plus they had the pause prior to repeating the question and they had the question. So, now they have a total of 10 extra seconds to plan that delivery.

In this one today where they rephrase the question and then answer it, they can still have all those pauses, plus they have control of rephrasing that question and then saying, is that what you mean? So, this will actually buy them about 15, maybe even 20 more seconds in that conversation.

So we’re going to talk a lot more about the different examples that may happen, some of the different examples that may happen because there are endless and some of the reasons why this may help and how you can watch for it, things like that, coming up right after this.

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Welcome back to deception tip number 64, where we are talking about rephrasing the question. How are liars when they are asked a question, they may pause and then rephrase that question to give themselves a little bit more time to calm down, prepare, and think about the reason, for their lie. They’re giving themselves a little bit more time, they need to be calm, they need to prepare, and they need to have that mental break.

So, they are going to rephrase that question to buy time. What does this look like? Let’s walk through an entire situation, so be ready, here we go, the next 20 seconds or so is going to be this example. 

Did you steal my money out of my bedroom? What? Do you want to know if I took your money? Yes, that’s what I said. That was a very short example of how this would go and typically when liars rephrase questions, it’s going to be a longer question.

Did you steal the money out of my bedroom? Do you want to know if I took your money? Those are very short, they’re saying in two seconds or less. When someone rephrases the question, it’s probably going to be a longer question. 

Where were you on Saturday, December X, Y, Z at two o’clock in the afternoon? That’s a longer question, there’re a lot more details in the question so then the liar would say, “Let’s see, you want to know where I was at two o’clock on Saturday, December, what did you say?”

Then they’ll, “Okay, on the X, Y, Z date, the 20th? Okay, let’s see, where was I?” Then they’ve bought another 10, 15 seconds of time because they’ve rephrased it, they’ve pointed it back to the questioner, then the questioner gives them another detail, repeating the question. Then they say, okay, let’s see where I was and ask it again, so now they’ve got all this stuff going and they’re buying more time.

What this does is it gets the questioner, or the target has two things happen with them, they either get very frustrated because they’re not being answered, or they start becoming engaged, and then they start listening and being won over by the liar. So, this is something that you need to really watch out for because if you are the type that gets either one of those, it’s not good.

If you get frustrated, then you’re going to let your emotions start to dictate what you’re seeing and what you’re doing, which means you may not be getting the truth. If you get won over by the liar, then you’re definitely not going to see the truth because you’re starting to be won over by them.

Why would this happen? Well, people would get frustrated because of the evasiveness of the answer, how they are never answering the question, they’re just dodging it. So, people can get frustrated with that, then how would they get won over?

Well, they can get won over because if the lair is having a conversation with the target, even though nothing’s really getting answered, the target may feel like they’re getting somewhere because the liar is talking.

They’re getting somewhere, they’re rephrasing my question, they’re asking me, I’m giving them answers. Psychologically, when people help other people, they trust them more, they like them more. 

So, that’s a little bit of a tip, if you can get someone to help you, they automatically trust you a little bit more. This is something simple, spill your glass at the restaurant or the bar or spill a little bit when you’re taking a drink and ask someone for a napkin, and they’ll help you out.

Now, they will automatically trust you a little bit more than if you were to help them, people like helping other people and it gives them a connection. So, when a liar target is going on and the liar is asking the target again for certain details in the question, the target is going to feel like they’re helping the liar out and then they will believe them a little bit more. 

So, that is something definitely to watch out for it and obviously it won’t happen in every situation, in every circumstance, but it is something that can happen.

Frustration is also bad, why would that happen? We went over it a little bit, but I’m going to get a little bit more into it. You need to avoid frustration because when a liar is toying around with your questions and not getting to the point or not answering them, that can be frustrating. What you need to do is allow it to run its course and then do the same to the liar because they will get a lot more frustrated, a lot faster than you will.

So, when they finally do give an answer, you twist it and make it something else and show them that you’re playing that same game, they will become frustrated because now they’ll feel like, wait a minute, you’re incriminating me, you’re doing this. They’ll feel like they’re not being heard, so then they are going to want to talk and tell you the truth.

Now, all of a sudden, you’ve put words in their mouth, you’ve got the situation all wrong, you’re an idiot. They’re going to correct you because they want to make sure that their side of the story is heard and if you can make them feel like that, then they will most likely end up slipping up and telling you the truth, which is what you want anyway. So, even if they think for a little while that you don’t know what you’re talking about, so be it.

You’re after the truth, you’re not there to impress that person, at least I hope not, so that is something to watch out for when people rephrase the question. Remember, this could take on a few different forms in that the liar can rephrase the question. They could also, as we talked about before, they could also ask for the question to be rephrased or repeated.

So, that’s two methods of stalling right there, they can either do it themselves so that they would have a little bit more control and then they could pause, they could slow down, or they can ask for it to be rephrased or repeated. It could happen multiple times, they could say the question, they don’t have to say it twice, they could say it three or four times.

They could ask you to repeat it two or three times, then they could ask you to rephrase it or say it differently. It could be a long process depending on how confident the liar is, so anytime you hear someone repeat the question or rephrase the question or ask for it to be repeated or rephrased, pay attention to other nonverbal behaviors that may occur.

I want to thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the Deception Tips podcast. I hope that you’ll share it with your friends, subscribe to the feed, check out the deception tips videos, the blog, take a look at the books I have available and as always tune in next week for a new deception tip.

Video Transcript

Hey guys, my name is Spencer Coffman, thank you for watching the deception tips videos, they’re all about teaching you how to read people and detect deception so that you will be able to tell if someone is lying to you. Today, we are going to talk about a deception that is giving the liar more time to think and consider their lie, they’re planning it, this is a stalling tactic or a delaying gesture.

It’s something that someone will do when they’re lying to give themselves a little bit more time and a little bit more peace to plan that and deliver that lie. We’re not talking a lot of time here, this could be a second or two, it’s something that is simply just a mental break. It’s one of those things that doesn’t require a lot of time but it’s just the control of the situation that gives them that peace.

It allows them to believe that they’re in control and that they can do this and that they know what’s going to happen and they can say this lie and that someone’s going to believe it and they’re going to get away with whatever it is. Hopefully, that’s not the case, you’re hopefully going to catch them in this, that’s why you’re learning about this tip today.

This is what they’re thinking, this is what’s going through their mind whether it’s consciously or unconsciously. So, here it is, this is deception tip number 64. In some cases, liars may rephrase the question and then answer it. This is done to give them more time to think about their lie. We’ve talked about this before in a different deception tip episode.

This was also talked about in Deception Tip episode number 43, where we had them repeat the question. So, this was where the liar was asking for the question to be rephrased or repeated, in this one, the liar is actually repeating or rephrasing the question themselves.

For example, if I’m talking to you and trying to get the truth from you then you say, “Could you repeat the question, please?” Then I would repeat the question to you to give you some time to answer. That’s also a stalling tactic, it’s delaying because in the amount of time, well first you waited then you ask for the question to be repeated. I repeated the question then you waited a little bit more and then gave the answer.

That could be about a five-second period, maybe even a little longer, five to ten. Again, not a lot of time but it was enough for the liar to feel like they had control of that situation. In this circumstance, it could be even longer than that because if you’re asking me a question, the ball is in my court. So, you asked me this question, then I could sit here and pause for a few seconds.

I’m not going to pause for a few seconds because it would be kind of strange in this video, but I could pause then I could repeat the question either verbatim or I could rephrase it in my own words and say it back to you. Then I could even wait for you to confirm, “Yes, so what’s your answer?” That could take even longer then I would think about it again or I could say, “Well, let me think about it” and stall even a little bit longer and then gives that answer.

So, here we’re talking, this could be drawn out for about a 30 second period before someone gets frustrating and say, “Come on, give me the answer already”. The point is, this is a stalling tactic, it’s a delaying tactic that is done to give whoever is answering the question a little bit more time.

Whether it’s more time to frustrate someone, to think of an answer, to better plan it, prepare for it or calm their nerves so that they can mask any of the unconscious behavior that’s coming out, you don’t know, it could be for any number of those reasons. It doesn’t necessarily mean that the person is lying or being deceptive, but it also could mean that they have something that they are hiding.

So, you need to watch for other patterns and clusters of behavior that could go along with that. Ask them the question again, maybe in a different way, see how they respond, there are all kinds of other strategies that you can use to find out whether or not they are telling the truth.

So, if this is your first time watching these videos, I’d love to have you subscribe to the channel on YouTube, feel free to comment with any questions as well. Also, if you’d like some more information, there are bookspodcasts, and blog posts, all available on that are 100% dedicated to teaching you exactly what every body is really saying.

Until next time.

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