We are better at identifying liars when we rely on initial responses rather than thinking about it, say psychologists.
Generally we are poor at spotting liars – managing only slightly better than flipping a coin.
But our success rate rises when we harness the unconscious mind, according to a report in Psychological Science.
“What interested us about the unconscious mind is that it just might really be the seat of where accurate lie detection lives,” said Dr Leanne ten Brinke of the University of California, Berkeley.
“So if our ability to detect lies is not conscious – we simply can’t do this when we’re thinking hard about it – then maybe it lives somewhere else, and so we thought one possible explanation was the unconscious mind.”
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