Lies are a common occurrence. For children to be attracted to lying, it is nothing wrong. In fact, it is a true fact that this tendency will not affect their character much. Lying has proved to be a part of growth in children. Their desire to win is naturally strong and sometimes children find protection only through lies.
[Read more about why your child starts to lie]
If you feel like your child’s lies are troublesome - stopping the frequency of their lies can be done at the right time with the right tools. Spotting a lie can be difficult - but the following 6 tips might help you teach your little one more about the benefits of honesty!
1. Two special ingredients
Before you look for any specific signs - you must remember the two very special ingredients of lying i.e. the mind and self control.
The mind is an ingredient that makes sure that the liar has the smartness factor.
Here your child feels smart about knowing what everyone might know in different situations. This way children’s lies get ‘credibility’ or a ‘decent rating’ in their mind. Your child thinks: “I know what I think you don’t know.”
In a similar way, a good liar maintains self-control.
Telling a good lie requires your child to remain in control always. This ensures that they do not give away any hints of lying through their:
- body language.
2. Know the before and after
As lies can be difficult to spot - it becomes important for you to understand a before and after.
This means carefully observe things that your child does when they seem to be telling the truth say talking about their favourite game. When you compare this state to a state of a suspicious lie - you will know the signs to spot for when your child might lie in the future say saying that broccoli is their favourite vegetable.
3. Talking funny?
Your child’s speech will change or seem unusual when they are lying.
Their voice and manner of speaking changes - not matching with the movement that they are making. This is an important sign to look out for. In fact, even the words that they use can be odd or out of the blue. Your child might also have unusual pauses as they talk - a sign that they are ‘thinking too hard’ or spinning long stories.
4. Fidgeting too much?
Lying requires a certain type of facial expression and body language.
Your child will seem to have a ‘neutral’ expression. Yet, if you looked closely - you can recognise the strain in your child’s body. This for ensuring to maintain control. Your child may look like they have no emotions like fear, guilt, shame or anxiety. Sometimes they are feeling the confidence or delight about lying successfully.
These emotions are hidden strongly and are too fast to spot if not looked for specifically.
Children might pull their arms and legs in toward their body. There can be some hidden movements that need to closely looked out for like subtle eye movements. This is another way to spotting whether your child is in the act of coming up with a lie.
5. Too much colour?
There is a slight change in your child’s blood flow which is rapid and automatic.
Although this is a sign that is more accurate with technological equipment, concentration will help you spot this sign easily. This is a sign that your child is surprisingly not in control of. Some doctors call this the pinocchio effect. Here, your child will have less redness on the cheeks and more on the nose. Many a time, blood seems to be withdrawn from your child’s extremities.
6. The blame game
When children are lying, they are insistent on pointing and blaming others.
This moves away the spotlight on them. Again, try to spot for mismatched eye movement so that you know that this is a time when your child is lying.
Lying is normal and alright. Your child may feel protected through lying. Yet, if you feel that is worrying you, all the right tools are there for you to stop it as gently as possible. Just make sure to be patient as your children are still learning. Happy parenting!
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