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How to unmask a false calm? Here are the signs that do not lie!

Calm is a quality appreciated in our modern societies, where stress and tension are omnipresent.

However, it is important to know how to discern a real calm, synonymous with serenity and balance, from a false calm, which can hide repressed emotions, manipulation or malevolent intentions.

We’ll show you the tell-tale signs of false calm, to help you better understand the people around you and act accordingly.

Body language: a valuable indicator for detecting false calm

The first thing to consider in recognizing false calm is body language.

Indeed, our body translates our emotions and thoughts, even when we try to hide them.

Micro-expressions are involuntary and very short-lived facial movements that betray our emotions. They are particularly indicative of false calm, as they are difficult to control. For example, a forced smile or a gesture of disgust that briefly appears on a person’s face may indicate that they are hiding their true feelings.

Gestures are also telltale signs of false calm. A person who rubs their hands, scratches their head or plays with an object can be prey to an inner tension that they try to hide. Similarly, a person who crosses their arms or legs rigidly may show defense in an uncomfortable situation.

Finally, the gaze is a key element of body language to detect false calm. A shifty gaze, which avoids eye contact, or on the contrary, an insistent and destabilizing gaze, can betray a person who hides his true emotions.

Verbal communication: subtle signs to decipher

Besides body language, verbal communication is another important cue to recognize false calm.

Indeed, our words and the way we express them can betray our true emotions.

  • Tone of voice: A flat voice, devoid of intonation or emotion, can indicate feigned calm. Conversely, a shaky or hesitant voice can betray poorly concealed inner tension.
  • The choice of words: A person who uses a formal and polished vocabulary, even in informal or convivial situations, may seek to mask their true feelings. Likewise, if a person is constantly repeating set phrases or small talk, it may indicate that they are avoiding expressing their emotions.
  • The rate of speech: A false calm can result in a rapid rate of speech, which testifies to a need to control the conversation and not to leave time for the interlocutor to ask embarrassing questions. Conversely, speaking slowly and calmly can be a strategy to give the impression of being in control of the situation.

Relational attitudes: revealing behaviors

Behaviors adopted in social interactions are also telltale signs of false calm.

Indeed, a person who hides his true emotions or intentions can adopt specific attitudes to deceive those around him.

  • Distance: False calm can manifest as excessive distance from others, whether physically or emotionally. A person who consistently avoids physical contact, such as hugs or handshakes, or who is reluctant to share their feelings and emotions, may seek to mask their true nature.
  • Excessive politeness: Exaggerated and systematic politeness can be a sign of false calm. Indeed, a person who seeks to appear calm and serene can adopt very polished manners to give an image of himself in adequacy with this facade.
  • Control: The need to control situations and people can also be a sign of false calm. A person who tries at all costs to control events, conversations and decisions can hide a fear of losing control and showing their true emotions.
  • Indifference: False calm can result in apparent indifference to the problems and emotions of others. A person who seems not to care about the well-being of those around him and who does not get involved in conflict situations may hide a lack of sincerity and true empathy.

Underlying Psychological Mechanisms: Causes of False Calm

Understanding the psychological mechanisms that can lead to false calm is key to spotting this type of behavior.

Indeed, several factors can push a person to conceal their true emotions and adopt an attitude of feigned calm.

The repression of emotions is a psychological defense mechanism that consists of pushing back into the unconscious feelings, memories or impulses deemed unacceptable. A person who suppresses his emotions may appear calm and serene, when in reality he is in the grip of significant inner tensions.

Fear of rejection is another factor that can cause a person to adopt a false calm. Indeed, expressing one’s true emotions can be perceived as a sign of weakness or instability, and lead to rejection by others. Thus, to avoid this situation, some people prefer to hide their feelings and give the impression of always being calm and in control.

Finally, manipulation is a reason that can explain the presence of a false calm. A manipulative person can feign calm and serenity to deceive those around him and achieve his ends. By giving the impression of being balanced and caring, she can gain the trust of others and influence them more easily.

Recognizing false calm is an essential skill to better understand the people around us and act accordingly. By paying attention to the telltale signs present in body language, verbal communication, relational attitudes and psychological mechanisms, it is possible to unmask individuals who are hiding their true emotions and intentions. Thus, we will be better able to protect our well-being and that of our loved ones, and to foster authentic and sincere relationships.