Human behavior is unique, so generalizing veracity cues is erroneous, if knowing the difference between truth and fiction is important. Think of a few instances when you would want to know the truth. Job interview? First date? Reading of a will? You get the idea…
Unlike jellyfish, humans do not clone themselves, but our words can sting. What we say and do are unique. Our verbal and nonverbal communication skills cannot be duplicated. Humans are one-of-a-kind communicators. We also like short-cuts. Not only were our brains created to process and store large amounts of information but also to retrieve information about the past, present, and future! Yes, the future. Speculation is the result of gathering past information to predict a future situation.
I say this jokingly, but I think my brain is constantly saying “Keep it simple, stupid.” (K.I.S.S.) I will admit, there have been days when brain overload seemed imminent. Cognitive load (brain stress) occurs, because of mental conflict, a mass input of information, or new and different surroundings, to name a few. As I mentioned before, our brain likes to take short-cuts, and our brain also likes to avoid cognitive load. The result is sometimes deceptive or incomplete answers. For example, what is the best way to avoid conflict? Answer: Don’t mention details that would initiate or result in conflict. This is also known as omission. What if you need to be convincing to save face or prevent someone’s feelings from getting hurt? Answer: Fabricate a convincing scenario based on the truth, or simply embellish the truth a bit.
Although I am not encouraging deceptive practices, white lies do sometimes serve a purpose. But what if knowing the TRUTH is paramount? Then do not seek to identify universal lie detection cues. Although many people exhibit similar behavioral traits, these cues do not always represent the same trait in each person. For more information on indirect methods to quantitative deception detection, visit https://MindSleuth.us Transparency may disclose information that should be kept secret, or disclose valuable information for the greater good. Either way, a noninvasive indirect method now exists allowing a glimpse into the mind’s cognitive processing.
Handwriting is more than written information on paper. It is a tangible piece of our mental processes. I’m not referring to your deepest darkest secrets; only you know those. I am talking about how you choose to communicate your thoughts. Some people rehearse their words in their brain prior to putting pen to paper, others just write freely and worry about editing later. Perhaps, this is why we use digital formatting for most everything; it is easy to edit without leaving smudges or lined-out words in the wake of our emerging discourse. Aesthetically, typed information is easier on the eye and void of unnecessary distractions. So why do law enforcement officials insist on taking written statements with pen and paper? Some may jokingly profess it is the lack of funds for 21st century technology, or others may just shrug and say “that’s the way we have always done it.”. Despite the reason, the unique identifying characteristics of handwriting should not be discounted.
Handwriting, like your DNA, identifies you yesterday, today, and tomorrow. Your handwriting changes with your moods and faculties. Handwriting is a time-stamped view of you! So, what does that say about comparative handwriting analysis? The overall appearance of your handwriting remains fairly consistent, but your writing slant, pressure, and spacing will vary. Something as simple as different widths of pen tips or writing surfaces will affect your handwriting; however, the information directed by your brain will not be altered. All of the typical who, what, when, where, how, and why questions cannot remain locked in our subconscious forever. While writing, we consistently pass along clues to our thought processes. For example, does a handwritten note “sound” like the person who wrote it? Hmm, not so much. Listen to a recorded version of the writer reading their handwritten note. All of a sudden you hear voice inflection and purposeful pauses. Have you ever wondered why movie producers use the author’s voice when showing a person reading a note from another? The effect is more powerful and speaks to our emotions.
Some say handwriting analysis is an art, a subjective science. I agree and disagree. Handwriting analysis can also be a measurable insight into mental processes. My research has shown and continues to show us areas where our brain writing consistently speaks to us with real-time data. Let me show you how this works. Intrigued? Fantastic! Click here, and grab a pen and paper.
Single or multiple submissions welcome. Make it a contest! Get your office involved. Assign yourself a 5-digit code to be placed on your writing sample. No identifying information please.
Instructions: Please write 4 paragraphs per the below instructions. You may print or write cursive on lined or unlined paper, and it does not matter if you write with a pen or pencil. Scan or photograph your completed statements and email or text them (with your 5-digit code) to: Michelle@MindSleuth.us or (800) 910-0270s. Results with 5-digit codes will be published on Facebook and in the Spring issue of eliteinvestigativejournal.com
PARAGRAPH #1– Copy the following paragraph.
I was asked to write an article about bitcoins. The editor will contact me with needed edits prior to publishing my article. The compensation will be in virtual dollars. PARAGRAPH #2
In 3 or more sentences, state your sex, age, your favorite pastime, and why you enjoy this pastime. PARAGRAPH #3
In 3 or more sentences, write about your dream vacation, as if you just returned from a week of rest and relaxation. Be creative! But, remember, you must have never experienced this vacation. PARAGRAPH #4
In 3 or more sentences, write about an incident which never occurred.
How do you get out of an uncomfortable situation without telling a bold-faced lie? You commit the act of paltering, deceiving while making truthful statements. Interrogators refer to paltering as acts of omission. Damaging information is not mentioned. Only truthful statements are produced; therefore, avoiding the act of fabricating a cover-up story.
So, in your playbook of schema, how does paltering affect behavior? Mimicking a template or following a social framework is easy if cognitive load is not involved. Paltering, however, requires the “sender” to plan and project only truthful emotions and messages, creating cognitive dissonance, a.k.a. mental stress. To the untrained person, paltering is rarely identified as deception, since we typically “want” to hear the truth.
“Yes. _______. Is that you? Are you OK?”
“I’m in New York and I am in a bit of trouble. I need some cash, Grandpa. Can you help me?”….
This is only one of several disturbing phone calls that are circulating. The phone numbers’ area codes always match the area from which the caller is supposedly calling.
How do we protect our vulnerable? When my boys were toddlers, I assigned them a family password. The password was our secret code and a quick way of assessing the boys’ safety. We rehearsed the password until it was second-nature. The password was fun and easy for a toddler to remember. Better yet, it was even harder for a teen or young adult to forget! We never had to use the password while the boys were young.
However, the password was recently used when the boys’ grandfather received a harried phone call and needed reassurance the young men were safe and sound. A one-word response to a text, email, or phone call is all the peace of mind needed sometimes.