We all know lying is bad. We’ve heard that since we were young. But have you heard about some of the long-term effects of lying? Aside from hurting others, Medical Express recently did a study showing how lying affects the person telling the lie. They discovered dishonest people struggle to read others’ emotions accurately.
The study took place between three universities: Washington University, University of Virginia and Harvard University. Subjects rolled a single die and predicted the outcome. If they guessed right, they were paid a small sum of money. Some of the participants had the option to cheat to earn money. After the test, each participant watched actors in videos and were asked to gauge his or her emotions.
There was a direct correlation between those who were dishonest and their inability to correctly read the emotions of the actors on screen. With more testing, the researchers saw a vicious cycle. The more an individual lied and accepted additional money, the more they were willing to continue to lie and the less able they were to read emotions.
While the researchers in this study did know in advance who was being dishonest, the real world isn’t under the same conditions. We don’t always know who is truthful and who isn’t. In some occupations, like mental health therapy, it’s important for professionals to be able to tell if someone is being honest or not. Without understanding someone’s level of honesty, it can be hard to understand their emotional capabilities.
If EyeDetect, a new lie detector that monitors eye behavior to detect deception — was used by mental health practitioners as a way to determine honesty, they could be far more effective in their treatment plans. EyeDetect doesn’t have to be used to get individuals in trouble with the law or disqualified from a job. However, it can be used to assist in resolving emotional issues.
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