Book Reviews

Book Review – Into the Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes

If you’re looking for a book that will keep you up past bed time, read Into The Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes. It’s darker than You – Caroline Kepnes Book Review and I think it got some influences from Rose Madder * Stephen King (you’ll know why if you read it). It’s definitely a book to be added to Books dealing with mental health

In Into the Darkest Corner, Catherine’s passionate relationship with Lee takes a nasty turn when she discovers his dark violent side. Things go from bad to worse when she tries to break it off with him. When her friends don’t believe her and she can see no other options, she plans her escape. Four years later, Lee is in jail and Catherine, now going by Cathy, is trying to start over. She tries to keep her constant fear at bay by checking and rechecking that her apartment is safe and secure. Eventually, she befriends her new neighbour, Stuart, who encourages her to deal with her fears in other ways. As time goes by and their relationship deepens, she starts feeling a little better and is beginning trust him. It’s then that she gets a phone call that changes everything. 

Book Reviews

Jeff Lindsay * Darkly Dreaming Dexter Book 1

It’s been close to 13 years since I first read this book. The “Dexter” show was in full swing and I ran across the book in the stores and, since I wanted to be a police-woman, I wanted to see how serial killers thought and behaved first hand. And who could teach better than Dexter, the sociopath serial killer with a killing code.
I remember being disappointed with the small book and its ending and thinking how the show was so much better, but now that the entire series ended after eight marvelous seasons, I decided to give it another go and listen to the audio book while driving to/from work.
I found myself laughing at points and making mental notes of different things that define a serial killer and what makes them tick and how can they blend in in our society so well. It’s a black comedy and witty to no end and my favourite type of book: a tingling spine chiller.

Dexter, a forensic `blood splatter analyst’ for the Miami Police, is a secret `controlled sociopath’.
The sociopathic tendencies as defined by Psychology today are:

  • Superficial charm and good intelligence
  • Absence of delusions and other signs of irrational thinking
  • Absence of nervousness or neurotic manifestations
  • Unreliability
  • Untruthfulness and insincerity
  • Lack of remorse and shame
  • Inadequately motivated antisocial behavior
  • Poor judgment and failure to learn by experience
  • Pathologic egocentricity and incapacity for love
  • General poverty in major affective reactions
  • Specific loss of insight
  • Unresponsiveness in general interpersonal relations
  • Fantastic and uninviting behavior with alcohol and sometimes without
  • Suicide threats rarely carried out
  • Sex life impersonal, trivial, and poorly integrated
  • Failure to follow any life plan

Where Harry’s code has helped Dexter – it has given him a life plan. To weed out the people who went free from the justice system and deserve to die. This is probably why the book starts off with Dexter and his “dark passenger” following a priest and then kidnapping him and confronting him with his deeds: the killing of seven or more innocent children.

After killing him, Dexter does showcase a bit of empathy for the children, which later gets re-iterated when talking about his girlfriend’s two children – Cody and Astor. He does not think of other people as humans, to him they are like props in a world, they do not feel real to him, but children are special – they are still innocent, young and need protection. And he does not want them becoming like him when they grow up. Does this mean that he yearns for his innocence back? To be like a kid again before his mother was brutally murdered and then taken into foster-care?

I am unlovable…I have tried to involve myself in other people, in relationships, and even – in my sillier moments – in love. But it doesn’t work. Something in me is broken or missing and sooner or later the other person catches me Acting or one of Those Nights comes along.”

Otherwise, Dexter is a fully functional adult. He has a job which he loves as he deals with blood splatters and as he puts it – solving crimes is just what others take out of his job. His main purpose is order – wanting to put the drops of blood into a pattern and arrange them so that they make sense. This is probably why he keeps a small drop of blood from all his victims in a case (the priest joins them).

So when a serial killer turns out in the lovely sunny city of Miami, where the light is so bright that makes every murder seem unreal, Dexter finds himself drawn in into the investigation – first by his sister who wants to advance to detective status after working the streets in the Vice department, then by his Dark Passenger who finds himself oddly fascinated by the purity and the beauty of the murders.

No blood. Why didn’t I think of that? Ice stops the blood from spreading.

Dexter also notices – barely – that he is still in the loop because detective LaGuerta has the hots for him and in a very non-subtle way. I mean she massages his leg and makes hints that she knows where to find him if she needs him… Come on! She is full on hitting on poor and unassuming Dexter and the only way he sees her is as a worm, someone to flatter to appear more human in the eyes of others. Well, the flattering paid off and LaGuerta was eyeing him as a woman and not as a co-worker.

“She stared at me “You have a message,” she said. “On you machine.”
I looked over at my answering machine. Sure enough, the light was blinking. The woman really was a detective.
“It’s some girl,” La Guerta said. “She sounds kind of sleepy and happy. You got a girlfriend, Dexter?” there was a strange hint of a challenge in her voice.
“You know how it is,” I said. “Women today are so forward, and when you are as handsome as I am they absolutely fling themselves at your head.” Perhaps an unfortunate choice of words; as I said it I couldn’t help thinking of the woman’s head flung at me not so long ago.
“Watch out,” La Guerta said. “Sooner or later one of them will stick.” I had no idea what she thought that meant, but it was a very unsettling image.
“I’m sure you’re right,” I said. “Until then, carpe diem.”
“It’s Latin,” I said. “It means, complain in the daylight.”

He has such a big list of things he needs to do to fit in – from the way he dresses to how he speaks and how he behaves in every situation.

Surpassing the clichés of eroticized violence and the too serious scientific special effects of CSI series, Dexter’s narrative uses an intelligent dark humour to subvert the rational power of forensic experts, showing that an efficient professional can be as perverted by irrational impulses as the criminals themselves, and what really obsesses a serial killer may turn to be the most normal obsession for a common man: to keep up appearances.

Whenever Dexter pretends to be normal, we recognize his daily rites as things we all do every day, and this explains the audience’s interest in the opening credits sequence for the TV series, Dexter. It shows a man putting himself together (piece by piece, close-up by close-up) in the course of enacting his morning rituals. It begins with an extreme close-up of a mosquito (like Dexter, a blood-sucking predator). Dexter swats it easily indifferent to another kill, another day. A trickle of blood flows into the top of the frame and down the tender skin of the neck. Some drops splatter near the drain in the sink, evoking Hitchcockian memories of blood and drains. He is sure he can present a “normal” face to the world.

He has been doing it all his life, every day. At the end, we see Dexter pulled together, the complete look, as he leaves his apartment and heads out into the world in the harsh light of day. Over-determined, controlled, Dexter catches our eye and flashes an unconvincing but polite smile. Cordial without being warm. He knows we know, but nobody else does. Like Norman Bates, he shares with us his little secret. A common secret that makes us anxious nowadays: modern monsters are no longer visible to the naked eye.

Dexter’s effort in keeping his monstrosity under the cover of appearances expresses a pervasive anxiety similar to a hidden terrorists.

“stay neat, dress nicely, avoid attention.” .. He “took pride in being the best-dressed monster in Dade County”

The only moment he is caught off-guard is when the ice-truck killer leaves the body of a victim in the net of the Panther’s ice rink.

“It was beautiful – in a terrible sort of way, of course. But still, the arrangement was perfect, compelling, beautifully bloodless. It showed great wit and a wonderful sense of composition. Somebody had gone to a lot of trouble to make this into a real work of art. Somebody with style, talent and a morbid sense of playfulness.”

The others around him feel slightly dumb by comparison. He is about three steps ahead of the investigation and he attributes this to the fact that he thinks outside the box. Policeforce is used to putting everything into fitting patterns and when something new appears that does not fit the pattern, they find it hard to adjust and see where it could go. It’s interesting to watch how he feeds Deb information and how he talks to LaGuerta :

“Home or away?” he asks LaGuerta .

She thinks he is joking but he is deadly serious and very smart. Everything has a significance to Dexter. The rink meant that the ball was in their court now. The rearview mirror identified with the body was not a rushed job – was an actual hint that he was watching. They were after him but they didn’t catch him yet. They were being watches. Dexter was being watched. It was personal.

It happens; incompetence is rewarded more often than not.

The thrill of the hunt is what connects both and there is a small bond forming between them. I’m not going to spoil the book by revealing who the killer was but if you, like me, have watched the show, already know this.

The only notable difference from the show is that LaGuerta does not make it. She gets killed and Doakes gets framed for it.

Why I liked the story now even though I didn’t 13 years ago?

Dexter’s contradictory personality is like a mirror reflecting everyone and everything that surrounds him. When he asks himself “what was I?” he immediately answers: “a perfect imitation of human life”. This means he is a true reflection of today’s society. In his contradictions we can see ourselves. Like everyone else, he can build a careful life, be charming, socialize, stay neat and dress nicely, if he doesn’t mind pretending he is human. Consequently, he considers himself “a neat and polite monster, the boy next door.”

This closeness can be frightening, but at the same time very revealing, because this is the true monster’s role in Western mythology.

His past trauma made him a damaged being who is neither a man nor an animal, but something monstrous and different, that can therefore assume a human shape to show that he is often more human than the majority of people living in a repressive moral system. He can be a utopian and amoral sociopath, but he has a moral code with which he controls his Dark Passenger, his dark self – the darkest and most repressed part of human personality that we often avoid to recognize.

This explains Dexter’s loneliness and isolation, which reminds us of Frankenstein’s feeling of exclusion: “Nothing else loves me, or ever will (…) I am alone in the world, all alone, but for Deborah. Except, of course, for the Thing inside.”

However, this strangeness and distance from normal human beings is also what connects Dexter with his readers, who sympathise with his perspective while feeling uncomfortable about this intimate and strange connection with a serial killer, who makes them understand his motives to take justice into his own hands. This transgressive sympathy for the monster and subversive understanding of his actions began with Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, where the representation of Gothic monstrosity caused a shift in sympathies and perspectives that allowed the monster to justify his monstrous behaviour, thus creating a deep empathy with the reader. Furthermore, the reader always wishes for that order and balance to be re-established, even if his hero uses Dexter’s peculiar method of making order out chaos. Ever dark element in Lindsay’s narrative evokes positive values through their negative counterparts. It is as if everyone has a double and everything is inverted and seen on the other side of the looking-glass. As Dexter says:

“It’s like, everything really is two ways, the way we all pretend it is and the way it really is.”


Jeff Lindsay is the author of the acclaimed Dexter novels, now adapted into an award-winning TV series. In addition, Jeff’s plays have been performed on the stage in New York and London. Outside of his writing, Jeff is a musician and karate enthusiast. He lives in Cape Coral, Florida, with his family.

Here are the Dexter novels in series order:

Darkly Dreaming Dexter
Dearly Devoted Dexter
Dexter in the Dark
Dexter by Design


Did you notice?

The title of Jeff Lindsay’s novel is itself representative of a kind of literary mode that is directly associated with the Gothic. Gothic fiction is known for the power its dark narratives hold in penetrating into the most obscure and irrational experiences of human existence to bring to the light of consciousness what had been kept secret and unconscious for a long period of time

Growing Up

Family Thanksgiving Activities

If you’re hosting a family thanksgiving, you want to create a fun family environment that helps children understand the importance of thankfulness and reminds the adults of this as well.

Since Thanksgiving comes just before what many refer to as the “greedy” season, activities designed to remind people of the bounty in their lives are useful. For example, you might help children understand that while they don’t have everything they want, they do have everything they need.

How do you do this? Several ways. One is to help children create a cornucopia, which will sit on the Thanksgiving table. There are a variety of ways to do this. You can make a papier-mâché cornucopia using a balloon as the base to help you get the shape started. You can simply take large piece of poster board and shape them into a cone and fill those with whatever you like. As an extra activity, you can have the children decorate the cornucopia before it gets filled.


Since the idea of the cornucopia is to celebrate a bounty and appreciate that bounty, you can fill it as is traditionally done with squash, corn and the like. You might also ask each member of the family to bring something that represents their personal bounty in life. A new mom might bring a baby blanket to put in the cornucopia while a newly retired grandpa might add a picture of his family, since that’s what’s most important to him. You can discuss the items in the cornucopia basket at the dinner table while enjoying your Thanksgiving feast.


Socialization and is it all that important?

Socialization is extremely critical for human beings, without it life would be dull.

In 1938 it was an unfortunate but true case study of this.  A girl named Anna was born to a mentally impaired woman that lived with her father. She was sent countless of places but was then returned home due to financial restraints. She was then forced into the attic and was given only enough milk to live on and lived there until she was five. She wasn’t given no affection, no smiles, no hugs, or anything else, just coldness.

Luckily, social workers saved the girl and sociologist Kingsley Davis went to see the girl immediately once he heard of the tragedy.  The girl was completely unresponsive, he reported and she did not laugh nor speak. However, with some help and guidance the girl did learn how to walk, speak a little, and even care for herself.  However, she died at the young age of 10.  This is an example of how lack of socialization can harm someone both physically and mentally.

Book Reviews

Survivors * Terry Nation

From the series of Post-Apocalyptic novels comes Survivors, a book – for the first time – written on British soil and not in the USA. Before embarking on the Doctor Who trip, Terry Nations wrote a series of sci-fi novels – one of them being survivors which was later made into a TV series for BBC.

Faced with a deadly virus which spreads quickly and at an exponential rate infects all the world (much like the Swine Flu was predicted to do), humanity needs to fend by itself.

SURV-4The book shows the life of a group of survivors who are immune to the disease or got sick and recovered – gaining immunity. They lose their loved ones, see the hospitals overpopulated, see all their neighbors die, see how it all slowly ends within a few weeks after the infection started.

They get on the road, moving pointlessly from zone to zone, not knowing what to do and living on the spoils of foraging from the dead.

We see the life of Abby, who lost her son in the confusion and is still looking for him. We see Greg who lost his fiance and sees this outbreak as a method of getting his own life on the road, making his own decisions again – even if these decisions include leaving a spoiled brat to tend to her injured boyfriend and that ends in disaster.
Jenny – that’s her name – walks off on her injured friend and leaves him to die a horrible death. She joins Greg further down the road.

Slowly, the individuals come across one another and also meet with an interesting character with political views. Since The Stand, this is the first book I have seen where chaos and death are good grounds of growing a new political state, a force where the few rule the even fewer left and they start with building an army, getting a tank, and then declaring any nearby farms inside their new state asking for a percentage of the crops as “protection fee”.
They basically veil their theft under the pretense of feeding their army and killing everyone that opposes them under martial law.

survivors-1Our little community goes back to the roots – doing seasonal agriculture and since none of them have been farmers before, they get into all sorts of trouble with the marshland, the weeds, the hybrid seedlings who only yield one crop.

They have long, hungry winters and longer work-filled summers. When they do get to enjoy themselves, they go out and get some whiskey. Coffee becomes a rarity and tea is only drank once a day – which, for a Brit, is a miracle!

They spend close to four years on the farm, beind raided in the winters by either “The National Unity Front” who claims their crops as tax due or by passer-byes. They set up a moat and start trading with nearby communities. When word comes that the National Unity Front have grown too strong and are starting to recruit for the military – men as young as 14 and that refusal comes with a desertor’s label that will make their entire community give up their yearly crops… our group knows it’s time to move on.

survivors10They do a group meeting and decide to pack up everything they can carry in a trailer and use a car and multiple bikes to go to Dover. Their plan is sound – the car can drive 10 miles and then wait for the bikers to catch up, in the mean time building fires and rest stops. This way their advance is slow but economical on petrol, which is a rarity.

When they reach Dover, they found out that other people had the same idea and they set up a toll and a crossing fee. Afraid of what the fee might be, they decide to take their chances and find their own boat. They get lucky and they find a private boat on a rich estate further down the shoreline. When the sea is calm and clear, they take the boat up, leave two of the men behind with their goods and Abby drives the rest across the channel.
The two men get ambushed by some young ones and Abby comes in time to see that one of the attackers was her missing son – just as he was being shot down.

The book ends with the survivors on the other shore waiting for another day or so and then when nobody comes, they decide to move on into France. Because they will survive.

Score: 5/5

Favourite Parts: Even though it’s written succintly (in under 250 pages), it shows the evolution of an infectious disease aftermath quite correctly. I was surprised by how good the insight into modern human behaviour was. It’s true – we are all used to using things, but do we know how they’re made? Do we know how to make the glass we drink from? How about matches? When they run out, will we be able to survive?

Bad parts What Jenny did – was quite inhuman, morally wrong. She never seems to get punished for it throughout the book. And she gets together with Greg and has a baby… Maybe she has changed but the fact that she left a man to die of hunger in the woods is not to be dismissed.

About the author

4763f0256f018a0946d0c3019699143927ff17b8Terry Nation was a Welsh novelist and screenwriter, best known for his science fiction creations which included the Daleks in Doctor Who, and the series Blake’s 7 and Survivors.

He was born on 8 August 1930 in Llandaff, near Cardiff. His father Gilbert, known as Bert, variously worked as a furniture upholsterer, salesman, chicken farmer and stocks speculator, and had a passion for drawing. His mother Susan was a housewife who gave her son a sense of purpose and drive.
The young Terry Nation had a passion for reading, although at school he was frequently seen as a daydreamer with little academic flair. Upon leaving education he immersed himself in writing and appeared on local stage productions.
Nation also began writing comedy prose and sketches, inspired by the wartime broadcasts from America. At the age of 22 he moved from Wales to London to try and become a stand-up comedian, but his attempts at stage delivery were largely unsuccessful.

Despite this burgeoning success, Nation didn’t find working in comedy easy, although he quickly gained a reputation as an experimental and versatile writer. He worked with comedy stars of the day including Frankie Howerd, Terry Scott, Ted Ray and Harry Worth, and helped write more than 200 radio programmes before moving into television.
Nation’s professional breakthrough came in the early 1960s when he was commissioned to write for Tony Hancock, initially for his television series and later for his stage show. He was the chief scriptwriter on Hancock’s 1963 tour, but over time found his scripts were being used less frequently and the pair fell out.

As a science fiction writer
After being fired by Hancock, Terry Nation contacted science fiction writer David Whitaker, whom had previously been turned down by Nation to contribute to a new BBC science fiction series called Doctor Who.

Nation changed his mind and wrote the show’s second ever serial, which ran from 21 December 1963 to 1 February 1964. More importantly, it introduced The Daleks, the extraterrestrial mutant race from the planet Skaro, which were created by Nation and designed by Raymond Cusick.

The Daleks were partly inspired by watching the Georgian State dance troupe on television. “In order to make it non-human what you have to do is take the legs off,” he later explained. “That’s the only way you can make it not look like a person dressed up. I had seen the Georgian state dancers, where the girls do this wonderful routine. They wore floor-brushing skirts and took very tiny steps and appeared to glide, really glide across the floor. That’s the movement I wanted for the Daleks.”

With financial stability Terry Nation invested his savings in a country home, Lynstead Park. In the 1970s he wrote his first novel, Survivors, about the aftermath of a plague which destroyed 99% of mankind. The book was dedicated to his wife Kate, and became a commercial success.

Survivors and Blake’s 7
Between 1975 and 1977 a television adaptation of Survivors was shown by the BBC. After the first of the three series, however, Nation found his vision of the show conflicting with that of producer Terence Dudley, and had no further involvement.
Survivors was remade by the BBC in 2008, in a six-episode series based on Nation’s original book.
Terry Nation’s next project was a children’s story named after his daughter. Rebecca’s World: Journey To The Forbidden Planet, published in 1975, focused on the protagonist’s travels to another planet to save it from ghosts, and became a best-seller in the UK.
His next work for the BBC, Blake’s 7, brought him yet more success. The show was about a group of criminals on the run from the totalitarian Terran Federation which ruled much of the galaxy. Blake’s 7 ran for four series between 1978 and 1981, and was highly acclaimed for its dark tone and moral ambiguity.
Nation wrote the first series of Blake’s 7, but had less involvement later on; he made no contribution to the final series, although he unsuccessfully attempted to gain funding for a fifth season in the 1980s.
In 1980 Nation and his family moved to Los Angeles, where he worked on a range of programme ideas. In the following years he worked for Columbia, 20th Century Fox and MGM. He wrote a number of pilot scripts which failed to reach the screen, although he contributed to the television series MacGyver, A Masterpiece Of Murder and A Fine Romance.
In his later years Terry Nation suffered from ill health, and on 9 March 1997 he died from emphysema in the Pacific Palisades district of Los Angeles. Prior to his death he had been working with actor Paul Darrow on another attempted revival of Blake’s 7.


How to instantly connect with anyone

Some people, regardless of money, education, looks or personality, make an impression wherever they go – they are master communicators, and everyone enjoys talking to them. How to Instantly Connect with Anyone shows you how to be one of those lucky few.


Instant Fact: How To Get The Truth Out of Anyone!

In an ideal society there would be no need for lies. But we live in a world of deception. And whether you want to play or not, you’re in the game. The question is, do you want to win?
Compiled By: John J. Webster
I. Signs of Deception
Once you realize that you’re being lied to, should you confront the liar immediately? Usually not. The best approach is to note the fact in your mind and continue with the conversation, trying to extract more information.
Once you confront someone who has lied to you, the tone of the conversation changes and gathering additional facts becomes difficult. Therefore, wait until you have all the evidence you want and then decide whether to confront the person at that time or hold off to figure how you can best use this insight to your advantage.
Section 1: Body Language

  • The person will make little or no eye contact. A person who is lying to you will do everything to avoid making eye contact.
  • Physical expression will be limited, with few arm and hand movements. What arm and hand movements are present will seem stiff, and mechanical. Hands, arm and legs pull in toward the body; the individual takes up less space.
  • His hand(s) may go up to his face or throat, especially to the mouth. But contact with his body is limited to these areas. He is also unlikely to touch his chest with an open hand gesture. He may also touch the nose or scratch behind the ear.
  • If he is trying to appear casual and relaxed about his answer, he may shrug a little.

Section 2: Emotional States: Consistency and Contradiction

  • The timing is off between gestures and words. If the facial expression comes after the verbal statement (“I am so angry with you right now” … pause … and then the angry expression), it looks false.
  • The head moves in a mechanical fashion without regard to emphasis, indicating a conscious movement.
  • Gestures don’t match the verbal message, such as frowning when saying “I love you.” Hands tightly clenched and a statement of pleasure are not in sync with each other.
  • The timing and duration of emotional gestures will seem off. The emotion is delayed coming on, stays longer than it should, and fades out abruptly.
  • Expression will be limited to the mouth area when the person is feigning certain emotions – happiness, surprise, awe, and so on – rather than the whole face.

Section 3: Interpersonal Interactions – When we are wrongfully accused, only a guilty person gets defensive. Someone who is innocent will usually go on the offensive.

  • He is reluctant to face his accuser and may turn his head or shift his body away.
  • The person who is lying will probably slouch; he is unlikely to stand tall with his arms out or outstretched.
  • There’s movement away from his accuser, possibly in the direction of the exit.
  • There will be little or no physical contact during his attempt to convince you.
  • He will not point his finger at the person he is trying to convince.
  • He may place physical objects (pillow, drinking glass, et cetera) between himself and his accuser to form a barrier, with a verbal equivalent of “I don’t want to talk about it,” indicating deception or covert intention.

Section 4: What Is Said: Actual Verbal Content

  • He will use your words to make his point. When asked, “Did you cheat on me?” The liar answers, “No, I didn’t cheat on you.”
  • In addition, when a suspect uses a contraction – “It wasn’t me” instead of “It was not me” – statistically, there is a 60% chance he is truthful.
  • He may stonewall, giving an impression that his mind is made up. This is often an attempt to limit your challenges to his position. If someone says right up front that he positively won’t budge, it means one thing: He knows he can be swayed. He needs to tell you this so you won’t ask, because he knows he’ll cave in. The confident person will use phrases like “I’m sorry, this is pretty much the best we can do.”
  • Watch out for the good old Freudian slip.
  • He depersonalizes his answer by offering his belief on the subject instead of answering directly. A liar offers abstract assurances as evidence of his innocence in a specific instance.

Example: “Did you ever cheat on me?” and you hear, “You know I’m against that sort of thing. I think it morally reprehensible.”

  • He will keep adding more information until he’s sure that he has sold you on his story.
  • The guilty are uncomfortable with silence. He speaks to fill the gap left by the silence.
  • He may imply an answer but never state it directly.

Section 5: How Something Is Said
Deceitful response to questions regarding beliefs and attitudes take longer to think up.
However, how fast does the rest of the sentence follow the initial one-word response? In truthful statements a fast no or yes is followed quickly by an explanation. If the person is being deceitful the rest of the sentence may come more slowly because he needs time to think up an explanation.
Watch out for reactions that are all out of proportion to the question. May repeat points that he has already made. May also be reluctant to use words that convey attachment and ownership or possessiveness (“that car” as opposed to “my car”).
The person who is lying may leave out pronouns and speak in a monotonous and inexpressive voice. When a person is making a truthful statement, he emphasizes the pronoun as much as or more than the rest of the sentence.
Words may be garbled and spoken softly, and syntax and grammar may be off.
In other words, his sentences will likely be muddled rather than emphasized.
Statements sound an awful lot like questions, indicating that he’s seeking reassurance. Voice, head and eyes lift at the end of their statement.
Section 6: Psychological Profile
• We often see the world as a reflection of ourselves.
If you’re being accused of something, check your accuser’s veracity. Watch out for those people who are always telling you just how corrupt the rest of the world is. Beware of those asking you if you believe him. They may respond with, “you don’t believe me, do you?” Most people who tell the truth expect to be believed.
• Look at whether his focus is internal or external. When a person is confident about what he’s saying, he’s more interested in your understanding him and less interested in how he appears to you.
• In a liar’s story, he will usually not give the point of view of a third party. To illustrate giving a point of view of someone else, “My roommate was so shocked that I would…”
• In relating a story, a liar often leaves out the negative aspects (unless the story is used to explain way he was delayed or had to cancel plans). The story of a vacation, for example, should have both positive and negative aspects of what happened.
• A liar willingly answers your questions but asks none of his own.
For example, during their first intimate encounter, Randy asks his new girlfriend if she’s ever been tested for AIDS.
She responds with “Oh, yes, certainly,” and continues on a bit about annual checkups, giving blood, etc. And then nothing! If she was concerned about her health, as her answer implied, then she would have asked him the same question. The liar is often unaware that coming across as truthful means both answering and asking questions.
Section 7: General Indications of Deceit
verbal_priznaki_lzi• When the subject is changed, he’s in a better, more relaxed mood. The guilty wants the subject changed; the innocent always wants a further exchange of information.
• He does not become indignant when falsely accused.
While he is being accused the liar will remain fairly expressionless. The liar is more concerned with how he is going to respond than he is with the accusation itself.
• He uses such phrases as “To tell you the truth,” “To be perfectly honest,” and “Why would I lie to you?”
• He has an answer to your question down pat, such as giving precise detail to an event occurring two months ago.
• He stalls by asking you to repeat the question or by answering your question with a question.
“Where did you hear that?” “Could you be more specific?” or even repeating your question back to you, at an attempt at sounding incredulous. For example, “Did I sell you a puppy with a heart condition? Is that what you’re asking me?”
• What he’s saying sounds implausible, such as “During the past ten years, I have never used a specific racial epithet.”
• He offers a preamble to his statement starting with “I don’t want you to think that…” Often that’s exactly what he wants you to think. Whenever someone makes a point of telling you what they’re not doing, you can be sure it’s exactly what they are doing. Such as, “Not to hurt your feelings, but…”
• He implies through a form of denial. You hear, “He’s having marital problems, but it has nothing to do with his wife’s new job.” What’s the first thing you ask? “What does his wife do?” Suddenly you’re in the exact conversation that is “supposed” to have no bearing on the facts.
• He uses humor or sarcasm to defuse your concerns, rather than responding seriously.
• He offers you a “better” alternative to your request when he is unable to give you what you originally asked for. Before you accept someone at his word that he has something better to offer, first see whether he has what you originally asked for. If he doesn’t, then you shouldn’t believe him.
• All of his facts relating to numbers are the same or multiples of one another. Watch out when facts, figures, and information have unusual similarities.
• There is evidence of involuntary responses that are anxiety based. Anxiety causes many things.
His breather may appear as a deep, audible inhaling in an attempt to control his breathing to calm himself. Swallowing becomes difficult; he may clear his throat. His ability to focus on something is often diminished, unable to pay attention to what’s going on.
• He uses an obvious fact to support a dubious action. For example, let’s say that a guard is standing watch over a restricted area. It’s his job to check ID’s of those who enter. “I’m not sure you have authorization,” he says to a man attempting access. “I’m not surprised,” answered the man, “only a few people are aware of my clearance level. My work here is not supposed to be known by everyone.”
• He casually tells you something that deserves more attention.
• He exclaims his displeasure at the actions of another who has done something similar so that you will not suspect him. For instance, if he is trying to throw you off track of his embezzlement scheme, he may openly chastise another employee for “borrowing” some office supplies for personal use at home. Your impression is that he is moral person who objects to something as minor as stealing office supplies.
Certainly he cannot be responsible for a large-scale embezzlement scheme.
• He may casually tell you something that should deserve more attention. “Oh by the way, I’ve got to go out of town next weekend on business.” If he doesn’t usually travel for work on the weekends, then you would expect her to make a point of how unusual the trip is. Her downplaying the trip makes it suspicious. When something out of the ordinary happens and the person doesn’t draw attention to it, it means that he is trying to draw attention away from it. Another tactic is running off a long list of items in the hope that one will remain unnoticed.
• If he lies about one thing, everything he says is questionable.
• His story is so wild that you almost don’t believe it. But you do, because if he wanted to lie, you think that he would have come up with something more plausible.
II. Becoming a Human Lie Detector:
The clues to deception can be used with great reliability in everyday situations and conversations. However, if you must know the truth in a given situation, this part provides you with a sequence of questions that virtually guarantees that you will know (a) if you’re being lied to and (b) what the truth is if it’s not obvious from the lie. When used in order, all three phases offer you the greatest opportunity to get at the truth.
Phase One – Three Attack-Sequence Primers
Primer 1
The objective here is to ask a question that does not accuse the person of anything but alludes to the person’s possible behavior. The key is to phrase a question that sounds perfectly innocent to an innocent person, but like an accusation to the guilty.
Suspicion: You feel that your girlfriend was unfaithful the night before.
Question: “Anything interesting happen last night?”
Suspicion: You think a coworker told your secretary that you have a crush on her.
Question: “Heard any good gossip recently?”
Any answers such as “Why do you ask?” or “Where did you hear that?” indicate concern on the person’s part. He should not be seeking information from you if he does not think that your question is leading. He should also not be interested in why you’re asking the question unless he thinks that you may know what he doesn’t want you to know.
Primer 2
The objective here is to introduce a scenario similar to what you suspect is going on, using specifics.
Suspicion: You suspect one of your salespeople has lied to a customer in order to make the sale.
Question: “Jim, I’m wondering if you could help me with something. It’s come to my attention that someone in the sales department has been misrepresenting our products to customers. How do you think we can clear this up?”
Suspicion: A hospital administrator suspects that a doctor was drinking while on duty.
Question: “Dr. Marcus, I’d like to get you advice on something. A colleague of mine at another hospital has a problem with one of her doctors. She feels he may be drinking while on call. Do you have any suggestions on how she can approach the doctor about this problem?”
If he’s innocent of the charges he’s likely to offer his advice and be pleased that you sought out his opinion. If he’s guilty he’ll seem uncomfortable and will assure you that he never does anything like that. Either way, this opens the door to probe further.
Primer 3
The objective here is to introduce a scenario similar to what you suspect is going on, using general terms.
Suspicion: You think a student has cheated on his exam.
Question: “Isn’t it amazing how someone can cheat on a test and not realize that I was standing behind him the entire time?”
Suspicion: You suspect a coworker of bad-mouthing you to your boss.
Question: “It’s amazing all the backstabbing that goes on around here, isn’t it? And these people doing it think that it won’t get back to the person involved.”
Suspicion: You think that your girlfriend may be two-timing you.
Question: “It’s amazing how someone can be unfaithful and expect not to get caught.”
A change in subject is highly indicative of guilt. However, if he finds your question interesting and he’s innocent, he might begin a conversation about it since he’s unafraid to discuss the subject.
Phase Two – Eleven Attack Sequences
Attack Sequence 1: Direct Questioning
• Stage 1. Ask your question directly.
• Give no advance warning of the subject you’re about to bring up or of any feelings of mistrust.
• Never reveal what you know first. Ask questions to gather information to see if it’s consistent with what you already know.
• The way you present yourself can greatly influence the attitude of the other person. Three powerful tips for establishing building rapport:
1. Matching posture and movements – if he has one hand in his pocket, you put your hand in yours.
2. Matching speech – if he’s speaking in a slow, relaxed tone, you do the same.
3. Matching key words – if he’s prone to using certain words or phrases, use them when speaking.
• Ask a question that you know will produce a response similar to how you expect him to react. In other words, if he waves his arms around no matter what he’s talking about, you want to know this.
• Use a relaxed and non-threatening posture, and square off so that you’re facing each other.
• Never, ever interrupt. You can’t learn anything new while you’re talking. Ask open-ended questions.
• Stage 2. Silence.
• Stage 3. Really? At the end of his answer respond with “Really?”
• Stage 4. Sudden Death. Follow with “Is there anything you want to get off your chest?”
Attack Sequence 2: Lead and Confine
• Stage 1. Ask a leading question. For example, “you were back by two A.M. last night, weren’t you?”
• Stage 2. Reverse course: You’ve got to be kidding! For example, “I was hoping you did, so you would have gotten it out of your system. Please tell me that you’ve done it, so I know that it’s over with.”
• Stage 3. This is not going to work. For example, “I thought you were somebody who had a sense of adventure. Someone who knows how to live a little.”
Attack Sequence 3: Time Line Distortion
• Scenario: You suspect several employees in your store of stealing money
• Stage1. Setting the scene. Let the conversation turn casually to stealing and say, “Oh, I knew right from the start what was going on.”
• Stage 2. It’s no big deal. “You had to know I knew. How else do you think you could have gotten away with it for so long? I hope you don’t think I’m a complete idiot.”
• Stage 3. I appreciate what you’ve done. “I know that you were just going along with it because you were scared of what the others would do. It’s really okay. I know you’re not that kind of person.”
Attack Sequence 4: Direct Assumption / Shot in the Dark
• Stage 1. Set the scene. Be somewhat curt and standoffish, as if something heavy-duty is bothering you. This will cause his mind to race to find ways to explain the “error of his ways.”
• Stage 2. I’m hurt. Say, “I’ve just found something out and I’m really hurt [shocked/surprised]. I know you’re going to lie to me and try to deny it, but I just wanted you to know that I know.” You establish that (a) he’s guilty of something and (b) you know what it is.
• Stage 3. Holding your ground. Say, “I think we both know what I’m talking about. We need to clear the air, and we can start by your talking.”
• Stage 4. Continue to hold your ground. Repeat phrases such as “I’m sure it will come to you” and “The longer I wait, the madder I’m getting.”
• Stage 5. Apply social pressure. “We were all talking about it. Everybody knows.” Now he begins to get curious about who knows and how they found out. As soon as he tries to find out, you’ll know he’s guilty.
Attack Sequence 5: The Missing Link
• Scenario: You think that your mother-in-law may have hired a private investigator to follow you around.
• Stage 1. List facts. Tell her something that you know to be true. “I know you’re not very fond of me, and that you objected to the wedding, but this time you’ve gone too far.”
• Stage 2. State your assumption. “I know all about the investigator. Why did you think that was necessary?”
• Stage 3. The magic phrase. “You know what, I’m too upset to talk about this now.” The guilty person will honor your request because she won’t want to anger you further. An innocent person will be mad at you for accusing her of something that she hasn’t done and will want to discuss it now.
Attack Sequence 6: Who, Me?
• Stage1. Setting the scene. He suspects that his ex-girlfriend broke into his house. He phoned to let her know in a very non-accusatory way that that there had been a break-in and some items were missing. The following type of conversation would ensue:
Winston: The police are going to want to talk to everyone who had access to the house. Since you still have a key, they’re going to want to speak with you. Just routine stuff, I’m sure. Of course you’re not a suspect.
Ex-Girlfriend: But I don’t know anything about it.
Winston: Oh, I know. Just policy, I guess. Anyway, one of my neighbors said that she got a partial license-plate number on a car that was by my house that day.
Ex-Girlfriend: (After a long pause) Well, I was driving around your neighborhood that day. I stopped by to see if you were home. But when you weren’t, I just left.
Winston: Oh, really? Well, they did a fingerprint test too. That should show something.
Ex-Girlfriend: What test?
Winston: Oh, they dusted for prints and…
• Stage 2. Inform non-accusatorily. Casually inform your suspect of the situation.
• Stage 3. Introduce evidence to be rebutted. As you introduce the evidence, look to see if every one of your statements is met by explanations from him as to how the evidence could be misunderstood. For example, you suspect that a co-worker had shredded some of your files. You would first set the stage by letting him know that you can’t find some important files. Then say, “Well, it’s a good thing my new secretary noticed someone by the shredder the other day. She said she recognized his face but didn’t know his name.” An innocent person would not feel the need to explain in order to avert the possibility that he might be wrongly accused.
• Stage 4. Continue. Continue with more facts that the person can try to explain away. But in actuality, as soon he starts to talk about why the situation might “look that way,” you know you have him.
Attack Sequence 7: Outrageous Accusations
• Stage 1. Accuse him of everything. In a very fed-up manner, accuse him of doing every imaginable dishonest and disloyal act.
• Stage 2. Introduce the suspicion. Now introduce the one thing you feel he really has done, and in an attempt to clear himself of the other charges, he will offer an explanation for his one slip-up. Say, “I mean, it’s not like you just stole a file, that would be fine. But all these other things are unspeakable.” He responds, “No, I just stole that one file because of the pressure to get the job done, but I would never sell trade secrets!”
The only way to prove his innocence to all of your outrageous accusations is to explain why he did what you really suspect of him of doing.
• Stage 3. Step in closer. This increases anxiety in the guilty. He feels he’s being closed in on.
Attack Sequence 8: Is There a Reason?
• Stage 1. Introduce a fact. For example, if you want to know if your secretary went out last night when she said she was sick, “I drove by your house on the way home. Is there a reason your car wasn’t in the driveway?”
Had she been home sick, she would simply tell you that you were wrong – the car was in the driveway.
• Stage 2. One more shot. “Oh, that’s odd, I called your house and I got your machine.” If she’s guilty she will look for any way to make her story fit your facts.
• Stage 3. Stare. Staring makes someone who is on the defensive feel closed in; your glare is infringing on her personal space, inducing a mental claustrophobia. Lock eyes with her and ask again.
Attack Sequence 9: Third-Party Confirmation
• Scenario: You suspect one of your employees is having someone else punch out on the time clock for him.
• Stage 1. Accuse outright. After gaining the assistance of a friend or coworker, you have this person make the accusation for you. Such as “Mel, I was talking to Cindy, and she told me she’s getting pretty tired of your having someone else punch out for you so you can leave work early.” At this point Mel is concerned only with Cindy’s disapproval of his actions. Your friend is thoroughly believable because we rarely think to question this type of third-party setup.
• Stage 2. Are you kidding? “Are you kidding? It’s common knowledge, but I think I know how you can smooth things over with her.” See if he take the bait. A person who’s innocent would not be interested in smoothing things over with someone else for something that he hasn’t done.
• Stage 3. Last call. “Okay. But are you sure? At this point, any hesitation is likely to be sign of guilt because he’s quickly trying to weight his options.
Attack Sequence 10: The Chain Reaction
• Scenario: You suspect several employees in your store of stealing money
• Stage 1. Setting the scene. In a one-on-one meeting with the employee, let them know that you’re looking for someone to be in charge of a new internal theft program for the entire company.
• Stage 2. The iron is… “We’re looking for someone who knows how it’s done. Now don’t worry, you’re not going to get in trouble. As a matter of fact we’ve known about it for some time. We were more interested in seeing how efficient you were. Quite impressive. Anyway, we feel that since you know how it’s done, you’ll know how to prevent it. Granted, it’s pretty unusual, but this is an unusual instance.”
• Stage 3. I told them so. “You know, I told them that you would be too afraid to have an open discussion about this. They were wrong, I was right.” Look for hesitation on his part. If he’s guilty, he will be weighing his options. This takes time. An innocent person has nothing to think about. Only the guilty have the option of confessing or not.
Attack Sequence 11: Condemn or Concern
Stage 1. I’m just letting you know. The key with this sequence is not to accuse, just to inform. Let’s say that you’re working in the customer service department of a computer store. A customer brings back a non-working printer for an exchange, claiming that he bought it just a few days before. He has the all-important receipt and the printer is packed neatly in the original box. Upon inspecting the contents you find that a necessary, expensive, and easily removable component of the machine is missing, a clear indication of why the machine was not functioning properly. Here are two possible responses you might get after informing the customer of your discovery.
Response 1. “I didn’t take it out. That’s how it was when I bought it.” (Defensive)
Response 2. “What? You sold me a printer that has a missing part? I wasted two hours trying to get that thing to work.” (Offensive)
The person who utters Response 2 has every right to be annoyed; it never crosses his mind that he’s being accused of anything. The person who gives Response 1 knows he never even tried to get the printer to work because he took the part out. It doesn’t occur to him to become angry. He assumes that he’s being accused of removing the part and become defensive when you inform him the part is missing.
Phase Three – Eleven Silver Bullets: How To Get The Truth Without Beating It Out Of Them
To convey honesty and truthfulness in your message, use the following techniques:

  • Look the person directly in the eyes.
  • Use hand movements to emphasize your message.
  • Use animated gestures that are fluid and consistent with the conversation.
  • Stand or sit upright – no slouching.
  • Don’t start off with any statements such as “To tell you the truth…” or “To be perfectly honest with you…”
  • Face the person straight on. Don’t back away.

Liars need an incentive to confess. The payoff for confessing needs to be immediate, clear, specific, and compelling. You can’t just tell a person what he’ll gain by being truthful or lose by continuing to lie; you must make it real for him – so real, in fact, that he can feel, taste, touch, see, and hear it. Make it his reality. Let him experience fully the pleasure of being honest and the pain of continuing the lie. Involve as many of the senses as you can, particularly visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. Create images for the person to see, sounds for him to hear, and sensations that he can almost feel. You want to make this experience as real as possible. First state the positives, then state the negatives, and then present the choice.
Silver Bullet 1: If You Think That’s Bad, Wait Until You Hear This!
This bullet works well because it forces the liar into thinking emotionally instead of logically. It alleviates his guilt by making him feel that he’s not alone, and it throws him off by creating a little anger and/or curiosity. Plus he thinks that you and he are exchanging information, instead of his giving you something for nothing.
Sample question formation: “The reason I’m asking you these questions is that I’ve done some things that I’m not too proud of, either. I can understand why you might have… In a way I’m almost relieved. Now I don’t feel too bad.” At this point he will ask you to get more specific about your actions. But insist that he tell you first. Hold out and he’ll come clean.
Silver Bullet 2: It Was An Accident. Really!
This is a great strategy because it makes him feel that it would be a good thing to have you know exactly what happened. He did something wrong, true, but that is no longer your concern. You shift the focus of your concern to his intentions, not his actions.
This makes it easy for him to confess to his behavior and “make it okay” with the explanation that it was unintentional. He feels that you care about his motivation. In other words, you let him know that the source of your concern is not what he’s done, but why he’s done it.
Sample question formation: “I can understand that maybe you didn’t plan on its happening. Things just got out of control and you acted without thinking. I’m fine with that – an accident, right? But if you did this on purpose, I don’t think that I could ever forgive you. You need to tell me that you didn’t do it intentionally. Please.”
Silver Bullet 3: The Boomerang
This bullet really throws a psychological curveball. With this example you tell him that he did something good, not bad. He’s completely thrown off by this. For example, you want to see if your interviewee has lied on her resume.
Sample question formation: “As we both know, everybody pads his resume just a bit. Personally, I think it shows guts. It tells me that the person isn’t afraid to take on new responsibilities. Which parts were you most creative with on this resume?”
Silver Bullet 4: Truth or Consequences
With this bullet you force your antagonist to work with you or you both end up with nothing. This is the exact opposite of the boomerang. Here the person has nothing unless he cooperates with you. Since you have nothing anyway (the truth), it’s a good tradeoff for you. Let’s say you suspect that your housekeeper has stolen from you.
Sample question formation: “I’d rather hear it from you first. I can live with what you did/what happened, but not with your lying to me about it. If you don’t tell me, then it’s over. If you tell me the truth, things can go back to how they were. But if you don’t, then we have no chance here, and you’ll have nothing.”
Silver Bullet 5: Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace
Human beings place a premium on that which is scarce. Simply put, rare equals good. You can dramatically increase your leverage by conveying that this is the only time that you will discuss this. Let him know that (a) this is his last chance he’ll have for explaining himself, and (b) you can get what you need from someone else. Try increasing the rate of your speech as well. The faster you speak, the less time he has to process the information, and
it conveys as stronger sense of urgency. Give a deadline with a penalty for not meeting it. Deadlines force action.
If the guilty party think that he can always come clean, then he will take a wait-and-see approach before tipping his hand. Let the person know that you already know and have proof of his action. And admitting his sins now will give him the opportunity to explain his side.
Sample question formations: “I want to hear it from you now. After tomorrow, anything you say won’t make a difference to me.” –––– “I know what happened/what you did. I was hoping I would hear it from you first. It would mean a lot to me to hear your side of it. I know there are two sides to every story, and before I decide what to do, I want to hear yours.” Hearing this gives him the feeling he still has a chance if he confesses. After all, what really happened can’t be as bad as what you heard. Confessing now is a way of cutting his losses.
Silver Bullet 6: Reverse Course
You convey to him what happened or what he did was a good thing insofar as it allows you and he to establish an even better relationship – personal or professional. You give him an opportunity to explain why he took that choice.
You also blame yourself.
Sample question formation: “I understand why you would have don’t that. Clearly you wouldn’t have unless you had a good reason. You were probably treated unfairly or something was lacking. What can I do to help so that it doesn’t happen again?” Keep interjecting the following phrases: “I take full responsibility for your actions. Let’s work together to see how we can avoid this from happening again. I understand completely.
You were right to do what you did.”
Silver Bullet 7: I Hate To Do This, But You Leave Me No Choice
This is the only strategy that involves threat. You let him become aware that there are going to be greater ramifications and repercussions than just lying to you – things that he never thought about. You rely on his imagination to set the terms of the damage that you can inflict. His mind will race through every possible scenario as his own fears turn against him.
• Sample question formation I: “I didn’t want to have to do this, but you leave me no choice.” This will propel him to respond: “Do what?” At this point he’s waiting to see what the tradeoff will be. But do not commit yourself to an action. Let him create in his own mind scenarios of what you will do unless he confesses.
• Sample question formation II: “You know what I can do, and I’ll do it. If you don’t want to tell me now, don’t. I’ll just do what I have to do.” After this statement, pay close attention to his response. If he focuses on what you will do to him, the odds lean more toward guilty. However, if he reasserts that he’s done nothing, he may in fact be innocent of your accusation. The guilty person needs to know the penalty to determine if it makes sense for him to stick to his story.
Silver Bullet 8: I Guess You’re Not Allowed
Never underestimate the power of appealing to a person’s ego. Sometimes you want to inflate it, and others times you want to attack it. This bullet is for attacking. It’s truly saddening how fragile some people’s egos are.
Sample question formations: “I think I know what it is – you’re not allowed to tell me. Somebody else is pulling the strings and you’ll get in trouble. You’d tell me the truth if you could, but you don’t have the power to do so.”
Silver Bullet 9: Higher Authority
As long as the person believes that you are on his side, he’ll take the bait. All you have to do is let him know that anything he’s lied about can now be cleared up in seconds. However, if anyone else finds out about it later, it’s too late. Let’s say that you want to know if your secretary leaves early when you’re out of the office.
Sample question formation: “The vice president from corporate is coming in today. He’s asked about your hours, so I’m going to tell him that you come in early on the days that you leave early. Do you remember what days last month you finished up early and took off?” This is disarming, and you’re not yelling at her or demanding answers.
You’re on her side, and you’re going to work together to smooth things over.
Silver Bullet 10: The Great Unknown
You can obtain maximum leverage by explaining how the ramifications of his deceit will be something that the suspect has never known before. Even if he believes that you are limited in what you can do to him and in what the penalty will be, the severity of the penalty can be manipulated in two major ways to make it appear much more severe: time and impact.
• Time: Give no indication of when the penalty will occur. When things happen unexpectedly, the degree of anguish is more potent.
• Impact: Convey that his entire life will be disrupted and drastically altered for the worse. He needs to see that this event is not isolated and will instead have a ripple effect. When bad things happen we are often comforted in knowing that it will soon be over and the rest of our life will remain intact and unaffected. But if these things are not assured, we become increasingly fearful and concerned.
Silver Bullet 11: I Couldn’t Care Less
A primary law governing human nature is that we all have a need to feel significant. Nobody wants to be thought of as unimportant, or feel that his ideas and thinking is irrelevant. Take away a person’s belief that he has value and he’ll do just about anything to reassert his sense of importance. Your apathy toward the situation will unnerve him immensely. He will begin to crave recognition and acceptance, in any form.
He needs to know you care what happens, and if talking about his misdeeds is the only way he can find out, he will.
Sample question formations: “I know and I just don’t care. This is not for me.” ––– “I’ve got other things to think about. Maybe we’ll talk some other time.” ––– “You do what you have to do, that’s fine with me.” To be more powerful, stare at him. When you stare at someone he often feels less significant and will seek to reassert his value.
III. Tactics For Detecting Deceit and Gathering Information In Casual Conversations
General Conversations
1. Ask-a-Fact
• During the conversation simply ask general, clear questions pertaining to your suspicion. This causes the person you are questioning to recall information. If he’s lying, he’ll take a while to answer because he first has to check his response mentally to be sure it makes sense. Made-up stories do not have details because they never happened!
• Ask questions that will give you an objective, not a subjective response. For instance, if you think an employee was home when he said he would be away on vacation, don’t ask him how he enjoyed the weather in Florida, but rather ask “Did you rent a car?” Once he answers yes to any question, ask for more detail. If he’s lying, he’ll try to keep the facts straight and will take his time answering further questions.
2. Add-a-False Fact
• Add a fact and ask the person to comment on it. This fact is one that you’ve made up, but one that sounds perfectly reasonable. For example, if you wanted to know if someone really indeed went on a safari to Africa, you mention that your uncle who works as a customs officer at the Nairobi airport told you that everyone going to Africa was given special instructions on how to avoid malaria. As soon as he validates your claim in an attempt to back up his assertion that he has gone to Africa, you know that his story is
Otherwise he would simply say that he doesn’t know what your uncle is talking about.
Here are the criteria:

  • • Your statement has to be untrue
  • • It has to sound reasonable

• Your assertion has to be something that would directly affect the person, so he would have firsthand knowledge of this “fact.”
3. Support-a-Fact
• In this sequence you take what the person says and request proof, but in a very non-threatening manner.
For example, in the case of the person who claimed he had gone on safari, you might let him know that you would love to see pictures of the trip. If he offers up a reason why you can’t see the pictures, then this should arouse some suspicion.
4. Expand-a-Fact
• Use this clue to determine how far someone is willing to go to get what she wants. All you do is expand on a fact that she has already offered. If she just goes on without correcting you, then you know that she may be lying about what she’s said so far and/or is willing to lie to get you to see her point. For example, your secretary asks you for the rest of the day off because she’s not feeling well. You might say, “oh, of course, if you’ve got a fever and a bad headache, by all means take off.” She never claimed to have these symptoms. You merely expanded on her statement.
Special Occasions
1. Third-Party Protection
• This tactic is used if someone is reluctant to tell you something that involves another person. You have to appeal to his ego and let him forget that he’s telling tales out of school. The conversation needs to be positive. The other person must feel as if he’s doing a good thing by answering your question.
• Scenario A: Your attorney is telling you about a case that a fellow attorney screwed up on. Simply asking, “What did he do wrong?” would probably get you nowhere. However, by turning it around you create an incentive for him to tell you. Ask, “Had you handled the case, what would you have done differently?”
• Scenario B: While chatting with Brad, one of your sales people, you would like to find out why Susan’s sales figures are low. But simply asking him why she’s not doing well might prove fruitless.
Ask, “What areas do you think Susan can improve in?”
2. The Power Play
• Sometimes the person reluctant to tell the truth is in a position of power. In these situations it’s usually inappropriate and futile to become argumentative. In these instances you want to bring the conversation to a personal level.
• Scenario: You’re trying to sell to a buyer who doesn’t want to buy and is not giving you a reason that you truly believe. Your objective will be to get to the real objection. “I do this for a living. My family relies on me to support them. Clearly we have a fine product and you’re a reasonable man. Would you mind telling me what I did to offend you?” Now your buyer is caught off guard and will undoubtedly follow with “Oh, you didn’t offend me. It’s just that…”
3. Hurt Feelings
• Someone is lying to you to protect your feeling – perhaps one of those little white lies. A touch of guilt makes the other person reevaluate his approach.
• Scenario: You feel that the truth is being withheld from you for your own benefit. “I know you don’t want to offend me, but you’re hurting me more by not being perfectly honest.” “If you don’t tell me, no one else will. If I can’t count on you for this, I don’t know what I would do.”
4. It’s A Matter of Opinion
• The following is an excellent method for detecting deceit in a person’s opinion.
• Scenario: You’re not sure if your boss really likes your idea for a new advertising campaign, even though she says she does. “Do you like the concept for my new idea?” “Sure. It’s very original.”
“Well, what would it take for you to love the idea?”
5. I Don’t Know
• This response can stall a conversation and leave you searching for answers. Sometimes it’s just easier to say, “I don’t know,” which is often why we say it in the first place. Either way, when you hear “I don’t know,” try some of the following responses:
1. “Okay, then why don’t you tell me how you’ve come to think the way yo

Growing Up

How past experiences affect your life

Without the interaction of other people an individual can’t develop a personality.
2big-past-lifeSociologist Herbert Mead developed a theory known as social behaviorism, which helped explained why past social experiences help form an individuals’ personality.
Mead did not believe that personality was developed by drives or biologically, but more on terms socially.  He stated that the self only developed when people interact with one another. Without the interaction of other people an individual can’t develop a personality.
An example of this is if a child is left in total isolation for a long period of time then they don’t mature both physically or mentally. Next, social experience is crucial, and this includes the exchange of symbols. Only people attach meanings to words and symbols. If you tell a dog to sit and it obeys then you may give it a snack. However, this doesn’t mean it knows why to sit down, but it does so to get food.
You can tell a dog to sit for numerous of reasons such as wanting to impress your friends, or to calm it down because it is running all over the place. Also, Mead noted that understanding individual intentions is critical.  This will help us to analyze how an individual will respond even before we act.
For example, when we’re driving we all anticipate what others may do because of experience. If an individual behinds you is speeding up rather quickly, then you can assume that they are about to switch lanes, or you can assume that they are in a rush and need to get somewhere quickly. Mead refers to this as taking another individual’s role.
Another important theory that is related to social behaviorism is the looking-glass self. This is basically like mirroring what we think others think of us.  If we think others view you as being “good looking,” then you will see yourself as being good looking, or if you think people think that you are fat then you will have that image of yourself. People take the roles of other people during development. Infants have very little knowledge so they tend to mimic others.
Children often have creative minds and take on roles of other significant others or people such as parents that have a special importance in their   social development.
For example, children will play house in which someone will take the role of a mother while another take that of a father. As they age children will learn to take various roles and adjust to their surroundings. As we continue to age we will continue to see changes in our social life. There are a lot of critics of Mead’s theories and some claim that he focus too much on the society in developing an individual’s behavior. Another sociologist Erik H. Erikson stated that unlike Freud who believed that personality was pretty much set in stone in the first couple of years of an individual’s life, that personality changes in stages and occurs all the way up to death. His theory is not all that accurate as well, because people experience changes in different orders and time.
Through all of the disagreements, sociologists generally agree on this main idea, and that is that the family has the greatest impact on an individual’s socialization abilities.
When an individual is an infant they have no control and usually rely on their parents and family members to help nurture them. Through family they learn several of communication techniques such as trust, culture, and beliefs.  Don’t get me wrong, not all learning comes solely from family; they can come from the environment as well because in a lot of cultures they use the environment to help raise a child. I guess the saying is true in which it takes a “village to raise a child.”
It may not be surprising to you that different social classes tend to raise their children differently. An interesting survey that happened in the United States compared what a lower class family would want in a child compared to that of an upper class family.  A lower class family would usually favor obedience and conformity while an upper class family would tend to favor creativity and good judgment (NORS, 2003).
Have you ever wondered why?
Well the reason is lower class workers tend to have jobs that they must be very obedient in and are highly supervised. Subconsciously they are gearing their children towards that route and will even use physical punishment to achieve it. In upper class workers they tend to have jobs that inspire individuality and creativity which is very similar to the traits they would like to have in their children. School also has a large effect on an individual’s personalities. If you think about it you spend a huge chunk of time each day at school.
playing_2163956bIt’s also interesting to note that children tend to play with people as the same race and gender, and that boys are more physical and aggressive while girls are more well behaved. Boys also tend to find abstract activities more interesting like video games and girls tend to be more artistic. The same thing follows when they get to college because boys tend to major in physical sciences, and computing while girls usually major in humanities and arts. In school is where children discover peer groups or individual that has similar interest as themselves.
People tend o indemnify more with their peer groups and can have conversations about things they understand like clothes, music, and style.  Peer groups are a way for individuals to escape adult supervision, and people are usually more out spoken in peer groups.
During the adolescent years people tend to identify more with their peer groups because they identify themselves as an adult and that is also a time in which parents are concerned about who their children hang around because they know that who they hang around influence their behavior deeply.
During these years the mass media heavily affects individuals as well.  Studies have showed that television have made people more passive and lessened their creativity.  In the United States, we spend he most time watching television and own the most T.V sets per household.
Should we go out and interact a bit more?


Social Phobias

Did you ever feel afraid to go out? Even to the mall? You might be suffering from a Social Phobia
By Jenny Bishop September 3, 2013
outsiderimage250Everyone is afraid of something. Everyone experiences nervousness, anxiety and even in superior feelings around certain people. Some people possess these feelings so deeply that their fear is considered irrational.
Even they realize that it is irrational and that they have a phobia. Millions of people suffer from phobias every day of their lives. The third largest psychological disorder in the United States is what psychologists have labelled a social phobia.
A social phobia is the fear of social situations and the interactions with other people that can automatically bring on feelings of self-consciousness, judgement, evaluation, and scrutiny. They cannot overcome a social phobia without the patient first grasping exactly what triggers their fears, and then learning how to receive proper help.
A social anxiety disorder or social phobia is the constant fear of being criticized or evaluated by other people. People with a social phobia are nervous, anxious, and afraid about many social situations. Simply attending a business meeting or going to a company party can be highly nerve wracking and intimidating. Although people with social anxiety want very much to be social with everyone else, their anxiety about not doing well in public is strong and hinders their best efforts. They freeze up when they meet new people, especially authority figures. They are particularly afraid that other people will notice that they are anxious, so this fear enables the anxiety to grow and turn into a vicious cycle.
woman-shopping-grocery-storeOne example, a woman hates to stand in the grocery store because she is afraid that everyone is watching her. She knows that it is not really true, but she cannot shake the feeling. While she is shopping, she is conscious of the fact that people might be staring at her from the big mirrors on the inside front of the ceiling.
Now, she has to talk to the person who is checking out the groceries. She tries to smile, but her voice comes out weakly. She is sure she is making a fool of herself. Her self-consciousness and anxiety rise to extremes. Many symptoms go hand in hand with this terrible phobia. The feelings that accompany a social phobia include anxiety, intense fear, negative thinking cycles, racing heart, blushing and trembling. In public places, such as work, meetings, or shopping, people with a social phobia feel that everyone is staring at them (even though, rationally, they know this is not true.)The socially anxious person can never relax when other people are around. It always seems as others are evaluating them, judging them, or being critical of them, so in turn, resisting social situations is much easier for the sufferer. Some specific symptoms are those people, for example, who cannot write in public because they fear people are watching and their hand will shake. Others are too overly introverted, and they find it too difficult to hold down a job.
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Some cannot eat in public or “freeze” when they step into a public situation. The suffered tries to avoid introductions to new people, being the focal point, or being observed while doing something, because it triggers their uncomfortable nature. Once the patient understands the sickness, they can make measures to help maintain these horrible feelings and overcome the sickness. When the phobias interfere with a person’s life, treatment can help. Because few socially-anxious people have heard of their own problem, and have never seen it discussed on any of the television talk shows, they think they are the only ones who have these terrible symptoms. Therefore, they keep quiet about them. It would be too horrific if everyone realized how much anxiety they experienced in daily life. Unfortunately, without some kind of education, knowledge and treatment, social anxiety continues to wreck havoc throughout their lives.
Adding to the dilemma, when a person with a social phobia gets up the nerve to seek help, the chances that they can find it are very slim. In fact, Psychiatrists have misdiagnosed people with a social phobia almost 98% of the time. People with a diagnosable DSM-IV social phobia have been mislabeled “schizophrenic,” “manic-depressive,” “clinically depressed,” “panic disordered,” and “personally disordered,” among many other misdiagnoses. Successful treatment usually involves a kind of cognitive-behavioral therapy called desensitization or exposure therapy, where psychologists gradually expose patients to what frightens them until the fear begins to fade. This treatment provides methods, techniques, and strategies that all combine to lessen anxiety and make the world a much more enjoyable place.
Therapy may involve learning to view social events differently, and exercises on relaxation and breathing also to help reduce anxiety symptoms.
Three-fourths of the patients benefit significantly from this type of treatment. A social phobia responds to a relatively short-term therapy, like twelve to twenty meetings, depending on the severity of the condition. Socially-anxious people do not need years and years of therapy.
Consequently, psychiatrists who teach people to “analyze” and “ruminate” over their problem’s usually make their social anxiety’s worse. Currently, no proven drug treatment for specific phobias has yet been found, but sometimes Psychiatrists may prescribe certain medications to help reduce anxiety symptoms before someone faces a phobic situation. Scientists have proven some medications effective when used with cognitve-behavioral therapy, about 80% effective.
MIS-MAOI-cover-e1371051697336One medication includes antidepressants called MAO inhibitors. Drugs called beta-blockers have helped people with specific form of a social phobia called a performance phobia. Klonopin is another kind of drug, and it helps calm the patient down enough to undergo treatment. Without treatment, a social phobia is a torturous emotional problem; with treatment, its bark is worse than its bite. Once the patient realizes that they have a phobia, treatment can substantially reduce their problems. Treatment may be found from any specialist who understands this problem and knows how to treat it. Getting over social anxiety is not an easy task, yet many thousands have already done it.

“Life is just one gut-wrenching anxiety problem after another,” says Ph.D. Thomas Richards.

However, the patient can quench this in a short period of time-but a cognitive-behavioral therapist who understands and specializes 8in the treatment of social anxiety.


Games People Play – The psychology of human relationships

Sensory Deprivation has been the cause of decline in a human’s functions. When in company, this deprivation can degenerate into games of acceptance. Read more!

THE theory of social intercourse, which has been outlined at some length in Transnational Analysis may be summarized as follows.
Spitz has found that infants deprived of handling over a long period will tend at length to sink into an irreversible decline and are prone to succumb eventually to inter current disease. In effect, this means that what he calls emotional deprivation can have a fatal outcome. These observations give rise to the idea of stimulus-hunger, and indicate that the most favoured forms of stimuli are those provided by physical intimacy, a conclusion not hard to accept on the basis of everyday experience.
An allied phenomenon is seen in grown-ups subjected to sensory deprivation. Experimentally, such deprivation may call forth a transient psychosis, or at least give rise to temporary mental disturbances. In the past, social and sensory deprivation is noted to have had similar effects in individuals condemned to long periods of solitary imprisonment. Indeed, solitary confinement is one of the punishments most dreaded even by prisoners hardened to physical brutality, and is now a notorious procedure for inducing political compliance. (Conversely, the best of the known weapons against compliance is social organization.)
On that biological side, it is probable that emotional and sensory deprivation tends to bring about or encourage organic changes. If the reticular activating system of the brain stem is not sufficiently stimulated, degenerative changes in the nerve cells may follow, at least indirectly. This may be a secondary effect due to poor nutrition, but the poor nutrition itself may be a product of apathy, as in infants suffering from marasmus. Hence a biological chain may he postulated leading from emotional and sensory deprivation through apathy to degenerative changes and death. In this sense, stimulus-hunger has the same relationship to survival of the human organism as food-hunger.
Indeed, not only biologically but also psychologically and socially, stimulus-hunger in many ways parallels the hunger for food. Such terms as malnutrition, satiation, gourmet, gourmand, faddist, ascetic, culinary arts, and good cook are easily transferred from the field of nutrition to the field of sensation. Overstuffing has its parallel in over stimulation. In both spheres, under ordinary conditions where ample supplies are available and a diversified menu is possible, choices will be heavily influenced by an individual’s idiosyncrasies. It is possible that some or many of these idiosyncrasies are constitutionally determined, but this is irrelevant to the problems at issue here.Guenther_blog1
The social psychiatrist’s concern in the matter is with what happens after the infant is separated from his mother. in the normal course of growth. What has been said so far may be summarized by the “colloquialism”:7 “If you are not stroked, your spinal cord will shrivel up.” Hence, after the period of close intimacy with the mother is over, the individual for the rest of his life is confronted with a dilemma upon whose horns his destiny and survival are continually being tossed. One born is the social, psychological and biological forces which stand in the way of continued physical intimacy in the infant style; the other is his perpetual striving for its attainment. Under most conditions he will compromise. He learns to do with more subtle, even symbolic, forms of handling, until the merest nod of recognition may serve the purpose to some extent, although his original craving for physical contact may remain unabated.
This process of compromise may be called by various terms, such as sublimation; but whatever it is called, the result is a partial transformation of the infantile stimulus-hunger into something which may be termed recognition-hunger. As the complexities of compromise increase, each person becomes more and more individual in his quest for recognition, and it is these differentia which lend variety to social intercourse and which determine the individual’s destiny. A movie actor may require hundreds of strokes each week from anonymous and undifferentiated admirers to keep his spinal cord from shrivelling, while a scientist may keep physically and mentally healthy on one stroke a year from a respected master.
“Stroking” may be used as a general term for intimate physical contact; in practice it may take various forms. Some people literally stroke an infant; others hug or pat it, while some people pinch it playfully or flip it with a fingertip. These all have their analogues in conversation, so that it seems one might predict how an individual would handle a baby by listening to him talk. By an extension of meaning, “stroking” may be employed colloquially to denote any act implying recognition of another’s presence. Hence a stroke may be used as the fundamental unit of social action. An exchange of strokes constitutes a transaction, which is the unit of social intercourse.
As far as the theory of games is concerned, the principle which emerges here is that any social intercourse whatever has a biological advantage over no intercourse at all. This has been experimentally demonstrated in the case of rats through some remarkable experiments by S. Levine 8 in which not only physical, mental and emotional development but also the biochemistry of the brain and even resistance to leukaemia were favourably affected by handling. The significant feature of these experiments was that gentle handling and painful electric shocks were equally effective in promoting the health of the animals.