Have you ever encountered a phony person? These folks don’t always let their true intentions be known and are experts at fooling others. Thankfully, you can protect yourself when you can identify the common traits of this type of person.

No matter who you are or how humble you try to be, everyone has some degree of self-interest. However, a person who is fake or phony doesn’t have the exact authenticity. They may show one thing on the outside, but their inside is different.

Did your parents ever say, “Beauty is only skin deep?” The reason for this adage is that they may look like an attractive person on the outside, but on the inside, they’re as dark and dangerous as a viper. They may use behaviors or develop attitudes that are nothing like their true spirit.

Signs of a Phony Person

The goal of a fake person is to make themselves appear better so that they can impress others. Thankfully, it’s just a matter of time before their true colors shine. If you want to spare yourself heartbreak, here are twelve signs of a phony person you should observe.

1. They Exaggerate and Lie

There’s nothing worse than someone that loves to exaggerate their accomplishments. If you make $20 an hour on your job, they make $25. They try to one-up you at every chance they get. Their goal is to make themselves look high and mighty. However, it usually comes across as arrogant and self-centered.

Ensure you listen to their statements carefully because the chances of catching this person in a lie in the first few minutes of meeting them is highly probable.

2. They’re A User

While you might not be able to spot a user in the first five minutes, you should have some indications early on. They want relationships that benefit them and don’t have the time or energy to help you. It’s a one-sided relationship that is not healthy.

Toxic people like this look out for number one, and they have little concern about your thoughts or feelings.

3. They Come on Strong

Have you ever met someone that comes across with a strong personality? They may be loud, overbearing, or try to force you to do things that make you uncomfortable. This is the kind of rude person to waitstaff, and they have no problem taking their emotional theatrics over the top.

4. Their Body Language and Words Don’t Match

Have you ever observed someone giving you a “compliment” while sighing or rolling their eyes? This person has no intention of being nice to you, but rather, they are only trying to suck up. The problem is that their body language doesn’t match their words.

You can see how they move their eyes, and body, or wave their hands when they speak. Never underestimate the power of body language.

5. They Gossip

If you’re honest, you would admit that sometimes gossiping with friends or relatives is nice. However, meeting someone for the first time is a big red flag if they are talking about others. You can rest assured that if they spread others’ dirty laundry to you, they will spread your dirty laundry to others.

6. They Won’t Be Around When You Need Something

A phony person is the king or queen of one-sided relationships. They want you to bend over backward and help them, but they will suddenly disappear if you need anything. They expect you to drop everything you’re doing when they have a need, but they won’t do the same.

To test someone upon meeting them, ask them if they want to hang out and give them your number. Observe their body language and see if they seem genuinely interested or are just playing along.

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7. They Want to Please Others

Underneath the fake person’s surface is probably low self-esteem, and they don’t know how to make friends. They’ve learned narcissistic patterns in life that at least get them an audience. They’ve never had someone stay around for the long haul, so their goal is to beat them to the punch.

You can often see this type of person by their eagerness to please others. It becomes very evident in a few minutes if a person is a people pleaser. They may offer to watch your kids, clean your house, or take you out and pay for dinner.

They are eager for an audience, so they will do whatever it takes to have you listen to them. However, please don’t count on their promises ever coming true.

8. They Don’t Hang Around Long

While you can’t tell them everything in five minutes, you can ask them about previous friendships. If this person hasn’t had long and meaningful relationships, then it’s a major red flag. To be a friend, you must be friendly.

Unless they’ve lived in isolation for years, they should have some rapport with others. Listen to how they talk about their parents and family life. It could be a significant indication of whether they will hang around. Those who have family dynamic issues often suffer from underlying mental health concerns.

9. They Are Big Braggarts

According to them, their life is a complete dream. They have the best job, car, house, and families. They may paddle on about all the beautiful things the universe has blessed them with. Sadly, these are probably made-up situations in the hopes of impressing you.

Remember, people with money and prestige don’t have to brag about it because it doesn’t matter if anyone else knows. Have you ever heard of a millionaire dressing like a commoner just to fit in and be normal?

Those who have nothing are usually the ones who brag the most. You need to run if you meet this person and they start bantering about all their accomplishments.

10. They’re Poor Listeners

There is nothing more annoying than someone who won’t listen to you. Have you ever had a conversation where they were talking, but when you tried to interject, they cut you off? They don’t want to listen to you because the phony person wants someone to listen to them.

They long for your pity and help, but they don’t have the time to listen to what’s happening in your life. If someone cuts you off and turns the subject back to them shortly after meeting you, you don’t want a relationship with this toxic individual.

11. It’s All About Convenience

Since this person thinks the world revolves around them, they expect you to start the rotation in their universe. Sadly, they see you as nothing more than someone they can use to get what they want. They have no desire to be your true friend, as they only care about what you can do for them.

It would help if you had a real friend that could be there for the good times and bad. No one wants a toxic person who is self-centered and ensures their needs are met before anyone else.

12. They’re Emotional Distant

An emotionally detached person has no interest or ability to connect with you emotionally. This person will often go the other way when anything that has an emotional basis comes up. For instance, if you’ve just met someone and you had a death in the family, they would be extremely uncomfortable with you sharing this information.

They may ignore you or leave the room at the mention of something emotionally heavy. They cannot deal with their emotions or think someone might see an ounce of humanity in them. This person can have severe mental health issues when they cannot emotionally connect with anyone else.

Final Thoughts on The Phony Person

The world is full of fake people. The real challenge is finding the true gems willing to stand with you when the whole world is falling apart. A real friend listens, offers you a shoulder to cry on, and runs to your side when needed.

A self-centered person has deep-seated issues that may stem from their childhood or another life trauma. They look out for themselves because they feel that no one will, which is indicative that they were possibly neglected in the past. They may also think they will never have any good relationships, so they would rather use people to get what they want from them first.

While it’s impossible to tell everything about a phony person in the first five minutes of meeting them, many indicators can tip you off that something isn’t right. Be careful who you let into your inner circle as it could be detrimental.