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Behavioral scientist reveals 4 ways he knows not to trust someone

Published Oct 25th, 2022 9:07PM EDT
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Trust is a huge part of humanity’s psychological foundation. It plays a vital part in friendships, relationships, family dynamics, and at work. So, knowing whom you can trust, and when you can trust them is always going to be important. But the unfortunate fact is, not everyone is trustworthy, and some have worked hard to find nonverbal cues you can use to judge whether to trust someone.

In fact, new research says that there are four main nonverbal cues that you can look out for when deciding whether to trust someone. These cues, when used alone, don’t give enough information to determine if someone is trustworthy or not. However, if you often see someone relying on these four behavioral cues, then some scientists say that you should be wary of putting your trust in those people.

These four behavioral cues are something you have probably seen quite a bit or even something that you do often. The four nonverbal cues you can use to judge whether to trust someone or not are face touching, hand fidgeting, crossing arms, and leaning away. However, as I noted above, to judge someone’s trustworthiness, you need all four, or a combination of all four.

check nonverbal cues to determine if someone is lyingImage source: fizkes / Adobe

Just seeing someone cross their arms is not a nonverbal cue that they aren’t trustworthy, just like someone leaning back when you’re talking to them isn’t necessarily them trying to pull away. They could be leaning back to stretch their back, and they could be crossing their arms to be more comfortable.

However, as Nick Hobson, Chief Behavioral Scientist at Apex Scoring Solutions, notes on Inc.com, together, these nonverbal cues can help you determine whether or not to trust someone, especially if they do them at the same time, and they do them often.

Of course, these nonverbal cues to determine trustworthiness don’t take into account the other cues you can look out for – like stammering (which can be a sign they’re trying to make up a lie or just a sign that you’re nervous) and more. There are also signs that you’re annoying, which you may want to check out if you get worried about how people respond to your presence.


Looking for more science news? Scientists recently treated terminal cancer using a modified herpes virus. Plus, a professor rediscovered a “miracle plant” previously believed to have been extinct for over 2,000 years.

Joshua Hawkins fell in love with writing and technology at a young age. Eventually he decided to combine the two and started writing about video games, the latest tech, and all the cool gadgets he could find. Whenever he isn’t busy writing about tech or gadgets, he can usually be found enjoying a new world in a video game, or tinkering with something on his computer.