Thursday, July 5, 2012

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2033:
Lie Detection, Sergey Lavrov and Syria

In this image, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is pictured during a recent press conference regarding the Syrian peace process. Both Russia and China are in disagreement with the other members of the U.N. Security Council on whether or not the departure of President Bashar al-Assad is essential.

Facial touching (Manipulators, Adaptors or Pacifiers AKA MAPs) is one of several body language signals which may indicate deception. Most (but not all) self-touching indicates an increased level of anxiety. This is particularly true when it involves the face - especially the mouth, the nose, one eye (touching/rubbing two eyes indicates a different thought-emotion entirely) or the ear/near the ear. These areas will itch due to local micro-changes of the vascular & nervous systems which are in-turn caused by anxiety. This itching is not imagined. It is very real. Such nonverbals are performed subconsciously. Of course, there are events other than deception which may trigger anxiety (and there are other signals of anxiety as well). However when these signs are secondary to lying, it may be that the person displaying these signals is hearing or witnessing what he/she believes to be a lie - or (statistically more commonly) due to a falsehood that is self-perpetrated. This is especially true when point-in-fact questions are being answered or similar statements are being made. If this were the scenario in which Minister Lavrov is pictured, and you were picking a jury, you would not want to include Sergey.