“Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me!”: 5 ways to spot deception

We all know the story of Pinocchio, the boy whose nose grew with each little fib he told… could you have a Pinocchio in your life….or even be one?!


“A lie keeps growing and growing until it’s as plain as the nose on your dace.” -Pinocchio

Deceptive individuals by nature have mastered the art of being manipulative. They are wordsmiths in their own right, able to sprinkle flattery and pull back at just the right time in an effort to pull the wool over their victims’ eyes.


How do you know when someone is authentically pure in their intent or that there may be an ulterior motive at play?

1. Listen to what they say. Literally.


As I’ve stated, deceptive folks are master wordsmiths but typically, if you listen closely enough you will begin to hear inconsistencies.

Does the person dance around the question being asked and have you noticed that depending on the day their story changes?

Do they never even answer what you asked yet they talk so much you’ve forgotten what the initial question was?

Do they overload you with superfluous details?

Do you feel like you are just getting lip service, meaning, the person is just telling you what you want to hear?

What a person says is important, and if you pay attention long enough, you’ll start to see that the information does not add up.

2.      Pay attention to their actions.

Words are precursors to actions. Actions help define who a person is character-wise.  While saying the “right thing” comes second nature to the deceptive individual, actions are more difficult for them to maintain on a consistent basis. It goes back to the concept that a person can only be on their best behavior for so long before their true colors begin to surface.


3.      Observe their pattern of communication.

A straight shooter is consistent in their ability to communicate with you. Never hear from your new honey until the wee hours of the night or really early in the morning? Maybe your new love interest only contacts you every three days…either this person is not serious about you, or they are trying to acquire you as their side piece. Sure, some people become wrapped up in whatever they’re doing during the day—work, taking care of the kids, etc.—but a straight shooter tells you what’s going on and is consistent about it.

4.      Pay attention to their history of behavior.


This is similar to paying attention to what a person tells you, but in a slightly different way.

Is the person’s past fraught with infidelity, addiction, poor job performance, etc? If so, this is a good indication that there may still be elements of dishonesty present. I’m not saying that a person cannot change, but behaviors and a person’s personality does become engrained in who they are. I encourage you to pay attention to these past aspects of a person’s life.

Remember, past behavior is often a predictor of future behavior and this is why it’s of utmost importance to either correct your own negative behaviors, and or recognize this pattern of behavior in other people.

5.      Your gut instinct is that the person is lying.

We have been gifted with the incredible ability to have a “gut instinct”. This is the feeling that passes over us when we know that there’s something not right with a situation or alternately, when we realize that we are about to embark on a positive endeavor. You “knew” when you met your husband. You “knew” that Carly was lying to you about staying out all night and later you found a receipt that confirmed your suspicions. You “knew” that someone at work didn’t like you and later your boss comes to you to tell you that that person has complained about your laughing (or some other benign issue). Just a few of the many situations where your gut instinct comes in very handy.

If you’re not sure about a situation or person, make sure that you are first clearheaded in your thinking—this means you are sober and have eaten and had a good night’s sleep. When you are thinking clearly, you are more in touch with your gut instinct or intuition. Try to practice honing your intuition and gut instinct skills because they are extremely important in navigating through the situations and people that come up in our lives.

Tying it all together…

Finding out that someone has been deceiving you is never a good feeling. However, truthfully (and unfortunately) this happens all the time. Learn to pay attention to what others are telling you and those inconsistencies that may arise, the behaviors they exhibit, communication, pattern or past behaviors, and most importantly that gut instinct that you were blessed with!

Never accept less treatment then you deserve from someone. We all deserve to be treated with honesty and respect and the treatment you accept from others sets the tone for how the relationship will go…

You matter, you’re important, and you have your own beautiful ability to bring value into this world. You deserve truthfulness in your life and to be treated with care and respect.


Deceptive people can change, although often times those lies become so thick that before you know it you are in a world of mess (think Walter White from Breaking Bad, okay maybe that’s too much but you know what I mean)!

Once you begin down a path that is laden with lies, it can become a difficult journey to backtrack, so why even start down that negative path in the beginning!? Learn to face the music as they say, face those fears you have about being honest, and appreciate that you are a good person despite making past mistakes.

None of us are perfect but the option to try to be the best version of ourselves is always there!

Find your truths!

Wishing you an honest life today and everyday,

Rachel Ann