How to Become a Proficient Liar

I tell the same lie every day. I lie to make my life easier. I have told this lie so many times that I can now do so with absolute conviction. No one suspects that it is a lie, not even those closest to me.

Early Days

When I started telling this lie, I wasn’t very convincing. People didn’t believe me. They looked at me doubtfully. Some even asked, “Are you sure?” I looked them straight in the eye and firmly repeated the lie, this time without batting an eyelid. Some challenged me. I just laughed and said, “No way, you are imagining things.”

How to start

I finally got it down to a fine art. Initially, it is easier to lie to people who do not know you well, so if you want to learn how to lie successfully, start lying to these unsuspecting people. They are more likely to take whatever you say at face value.

Keep it simple

A good lie needs no embellishment. Resist, at all cost, the temptation to exaggerate or to embroider. Within days you will have forgotten the details, and you will get them wrong. People will get suspicious. You will be caught out, and the embarrassment will be intense. You will lose all credibility. In the beginning, that happened to me on occasion, with far-reaching consequences. Not anymore. Now my whole lie consists of three short words. Two, if I shorten the sentence with an apostrophe.

Persevere

It is more difficult to lie to people who know you, especially people who care about you. You will need to be persistent and unwavering. They will try to catch you out. They will keep on asking the same questions, over and over. If you persevere with your lie, even those closest to you will eventually give up. My nearest and dearest may not believe my lie, but they have stopped badgering me about it.

Smoke Screens and Mirrors

In any case, in my extensive experience, most people see and hear only what they want to see and hear. If your lie fits in with their expectations, they will not question it. They will believe it because they want to believe it. People believe my lie because they do not want to believe the truth.

Deflect and Distract

Also, an experienced liar knows that most people are only interested in their own peccadilloes. They are so focused on their problems that with a bit of planning, even the most blatant lie can go unnoticed. Tell your lie, and then distract or deflect them. Follow it up immediately by asking about something that is of great personal importance to your listener.

Spreading Lies

I suggest that you do everything you can to ensure that your lie is repeated by others as often as possible. A lie gains believability when it comes out of other people’s mouths. It is especially effective if you can get someone trustworthy to repeat your lie. It takes a bit of practice to get this right, and the first few times it will make you feel guilty, but it is one of the best ways to ensure that your lie survives out there in a world full of doubting Thomases.

Avoid Non-verbal Betrayal

Mindfully control your body language. Do not blush. Do not stammer. Do not fidget. Do not look away. Do not bring your hand to your face but do not put your hands in your pockets either. If it appears as if they don’t believe you, do not cringe.

Facilitating Lies

One thing that counts in favour of the not-yet-proficient liar is that most people, during a conversation, are not interested in your response. While you answer their question, they are already thinking about what they are going to say next. It is effortless to slip a carefully-crafted lie into this vacuum.

Rinse and Repeat

Remember also to repeat your lie often to yourself. It is said that pathological liars are so good at lying because they wholeheartedly believe their own lies. This, however, has not worked for me. Even though I have repeated my lie to myself for decades; I still cannot convince myself that it is true. Too much evidence to the contrary.

Still, it has had and still has its uses. So, when people ask me how I am, I tell them with total conviction:

“Honestly, I’m fine.”


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