Habitual liars can be found everywhere, and are not the same as compulsive liars. You probably know at least one habitual liar right now, that you may not be aware of. This is the definition of a habitual liar:
Habitual liars are individuals that knowingly lie out of convenience are laziness, but not necessarily with any particular motivation. Habitual liars lie because they get used to it, rather than through compulsion or because of deep seated psychological condition.
Here’s what you need to know if you think you might have a habitual liar in your life.
How Do You Tell a Habitual Liar?
Habitual liars are people that have just developed a habit of lying, just like you might have a habit of sitting in a certain part of the coach, doing certain things after work, or buying certain foods.
Unlike pathological or compulsive liar, there is not any particular condition that makes them want to lie. So, their relatively constant lies are born mostly through force of repetition.
Likewise, habitual liars will often lie about little things that don’t really matter. Just little white lies. Although they are also likely to lie if they fear the consequences of the truth.
Habitual liars know that they are lying, although they may not be intentionally doing it.
Signs of a habitual liar —
- Hands on their face or they look away when they speak
- Constantly say that they aren’t lying or try to show their truthfulness
- Have a difficult time remembering what they told different people
- They look up and to their right while “remembering things”
- You find them lying about things of little consequence
Habitual Liars vs Compulsive Liars
Habitual liars are the most mild form of the toxic liars that I’ve covered on this site. The more serious being compulsive and pathological liars.
Where as compulsive and pathological liars have psychological conditions that cause them to lie practically uncontrollably, habitual liars can and do choose to do so.
Compulsive liars are much more likely to tell grander and more unbelievable lies. But, like habitual liars, many of their lies may serve no particular purpose.
Pathological liars are much more likely to lie in order to serve some personal agenda. Narcissist, sociopaths, psychopaths, and people with other form of antisocial personality disorders are likely to be pathological liars. These people know that they are lying, but have difficulty understanding that they shouldn’t lie.
Do you think you have a compulsive liar on your hands? Read more here:
Can A Habitual Liar Stop Lying?
Yes. With a little hard work, it is entirely possible for a habitual liar to stop lying. It is about the same amount of effort as it would take someone to stop slouching or to stop saying “like” all the time.
If you would like help getting out of a habit of lying, check our resources page for access to books, courses, and one-on-one coaching —
Can habitual liars change?
Yes, with some effort at self improvement a habitual liar can change, since their dishonesty stems from habit rather than a psychological condition. However, if your “habitual liar” is actually a compulsive or pathological liar, then they will have extreme difficulty if they attempt to stop lying.
How do I stop habitually lying?
Stop habitually lying by first making a commitment to telling the truth. Write down times and circumstances that you habitually lie, focus on one a time, and take extra special care to speak slowly and truthfully in those situations. Correct lies that you notice as soon as you notice them, even if it makes you look bad.