Here Are 9 Comebacks For Dealing With A Liar
1. CONFIRM THE PERSON IS ACTUALLY LYING
If you think you’ve been lied to, it is easy to get worked up and abandon logic for emotions. But if you think you’re upset now, how would you feel about yourself accusing someone of something they didn’t do?
Research shows that paying attention to a person’s baseline habits – how they conduct themselves when they’re not lying – and comparing them to their present behavior is the best way to find out. For example, if they appear anxious, avoidant, or uneasy, it may be time for a talk.
2. CHECK YOUR FACTS
Put on your investigator cap and uncover and document all of the pertinent facts (Who, What, When, Where, Why). Facts are crucial when confronting a liar; if you don’t possess objective, hard information, then don’t bother confronting them at all. (They’ll just slither their way out of it.) Oppositely, if you’re diligent about collecting the necessary facts, you can confront the liar with confidence.
At this stage, you know with near-to-absolute certainty that the person lied.
3. DETERMINE THE COURSE OF ACTION
After you’re reasonably sure someone is fibbing, it’s time to consider your approach. Only you know the context of the situation and the severity of the lie; so it’s up to you to determine how you’ll go about handling it. Is this a first offense or is it a pattern of behavior? What effects did the lie have? Was this a personal or professional incident? All of these factors must be taken into consideration.
4. CALL THEM OUT (IF NECESSARY)
This step can be difficult for some of us, especially those who are conflict-avoidant. To overcome this hesitation, it may be necessary to remind yourself what is personally at stake (reputation is a big one.) If your character is being called into question, especially in a workplace environment, you need to call their B.S.
When You’re Ready to Confront:
5. MAINTAIN YOUR INTEGRITY
As you may know, dealing with a chronic fabricator is often a maddening experience. But you haven’t come this far only to stoop to their level. Always be above personal reproach. Before confronting the liar, remind yourself who you truly are. Rigorously adhere to your principles, and you will maintain your integrity.
6. KEEP THINGS CIVIL
Once you are in the appropriate environment, calmly state “Something is on my mind and I wanted to discuss it with you.” Afterwards, present your case. “Here’s what I heard” or “Here’s what I know” are possible openers.
Maintain a calm, composed tone at all times. There is no need to escalate things unless absolutely necessary.
7. WATCH THEIR REACTION
Once confronted with hard evidence, liars will do one of three things: deny, admit, or defend. Admitting what they did is the only acceptable solution in all likelihood. Provided that you gathered the facts, maintained your composure, and kept things civil, there is no excuse for the person to act defensive, deny their actions or play dumb.
Provided the person doesn’t get out of hand, you can end the conversation after the next step.
8. SEND A STRONG MESSAGE
Make no mistake about it, you are a victim of someone else’s lying or manipulation. Quashing someone’s propensity to lie about you requires a firm (yet calmly stated) message. Take a few moments after your case is presented to express that you do not appreciate lying from others; that you expect the person to be open and honest, and that you will always do the same.
9. REFLECT INTERNALLY
After someone lies to you – especially if it’s a person who you trust – a period of reflection may be necessary. The truth of the matter is that most people are honest – for better or for worse.
Take heart in the honesty of most people. Regarding the offending individual, reevaluate the relationship, if necessary, but forgive them, if only for your own peace of mind.
But always remember this: You are a good, honest, and strong person. Your character will never fail to rise above the situation, provided you keep heart!