Why Do People Lie?


Quick Answer

According to scientists, people lie to control the way in which they are perceived by others. People also lie because it makes them feel good and boosts their self-esteem.

Continue Reading
Why Do People Lie?
Credit: Carlos Fierro E+ Getty Images

Full Answer

Society has created certain types of roles that people want to emulate. In their minds, people want to convey themselves as certain types of characters. In attempting to do this, however, they sometimes either simply forget or neglect separating the idea of who they want to be with who they actually are. This leads to lying, both to themselves and to others in order to preserve a carefully constructed persona.

Lying places a lot more stress on the brain than telling the truth because many regions of the brain are required in order to construct a story and communicate convincingly while withholding the truth. Researchers have also determined that even though all types of animals engage in some form of deceit in regard to one another, only humans intentionally deceive themselves.

Studies also indicate that there are gender differences in lying. Men are more motivated to lie by their desire to be appealing, and women are more likely to lie in order to avoid hurt feelings.

Some lies are more serious than others. For example, some people lie to protect their privacy or to avoid causing hurt feelings in others.

Learn more about Psychology
Related Videos

Related Questions