5 Levels of Listening That Will Make You Better Listener

Levels of Listening

In the famous book how to win friends and influence people. The author of this book named Dale Carnegie. He talks about something called the five levels of listening. And I want to break them down and explain them in this post. So that you can have a better understanding of how to listen.

Specifically to girls and specifically so that they feel like they are being listened to. If you want to take your relationship to the next level ascending up this pyramid of the five levels of listening is how you do it.

Levels of Listening

Level 1: Ignoring Listening

We all know what this is. They are talking and you’re hearing them. Kind of like the physical noise that comes from background music or when you put on Futurama and try to write a script but you’re not consciously selecting to keep your attention to what they are saying.

Remember that hearing is a physical thing. You can hear the physical sound waves but listening is turning those sound waves into information that you can use. 

It’s focusing your attention on what is being said not just what this noise is so real quick. Let me go down a tangent here. 

There’s this experiment in psychology called dear Aunt Jane experiment and cognitive psychologist wanted to see. If people could hear in both ears at the same time and if they can’t how do they choose which ear to listen to. 

I actually wrote an entire article on selective attention theories. Anyway, they had these participants listen to two things. In each ear, in one ear they played nine and six and in the other ears. They played dear 7, Jane.

Also Read, How to Develop Good Work Habit 

Now, this is obviously just a mix of numbers and words that they wanted the participant to focus on. Now you can’t objectively ensure that a person is focusing on something. So what you do is you tell them to repeat whatever they hear this process is called shadowing. 

Now, what happens when you tell people to do this. They say out loud dear Aunt Jane. This means for whatever reason. 

Even if you try to pay attention with one ear your brain will pick out meaningful stuff from the other ear so the mortal of this little experiment what you focus on matters. And if I were, to sum up, attention theories for you real quick because I’ve read a ton about them. 

It’s the humans have horrible focus and that brains like to wander so you will probably have to put an actual effort to listen.

Level 2: Pretend Listening

This is when you hear them but you’re still not listening what makes this different than ignoring is that you’re responding in a way that tricks the speaker into thinking that you’re understanding what they’re saying.

In fact, you’re actually lying to them. Think of when talking to someone on the phone mmm-hmm, yeah, okay, yeah, mm-hmm. You’re not adding value to the conversation.

Maybe it’s because you’re not listening and in fact, if you were asked you wouldn’t know what the conversation is about. This is usually more common in older marriages and relationships or when my mom asked my little brother to do something around the house.

Level 3: Selective Listening

So selective listening is when you only pay attention to hot words or phrases that you agree with, so back to that attention theory. This is when you hear football or GTX 2080 or twin-turbo injected v8 five liters and your brain suddenly decides that something’s important and to start listening to you.

Choose what you want to hear and then you forget the rest. It’s better than the other two lower levels of listening because at least you’re listening to a bit but not to the entire story you’re only listening to what you want to hear and you’re ditching the rest. 

One major mistake men commonly make is listening to what they agree with and then. Assuming that the rest of the conversation is about it. 

For example, have you ever been interrupted by someone saying something and it’s like. If you had finished what you were going to say in the first place. 

You might have answered their question. It’s kind of annoying so don’t do that to women or really anyone. In general, people can pick up on selective listening. Even more, than they can pretend to listen.

Level 4: Attentive Listening

This is what the majority of people do. Now many people actually can’t make it past this stage and if you can you’ll stand out and you will be remembered. In fact, one study found that cult leaders are actually great at getting past this two-level five. 

As well as other generally charismatic people now attentive listening is when you listen to the other person carefully but at the same time you’re judging their opinions and you’re most likely already thinking about what you want to say. 

The next one important thing I want you to remember from this post is most people listen with the intent to reply not with the intent to understand. If you can try to understand the other person your conversations will always be much more fruitful think of conversations. 

You’ve had with other people have you ever been interrupted by someone who interrupted. You just to say what was on their mind.

It had nothing to do with what you were telling them a lot of people commonly do this and it’s because while you’re halfway done explaining yourself or maybe telling a story. 

They have stopped listening and are instead trying to remember what they’re going to say to you. Next, this is better than all the other levels but you should aim for the fifth and the best type of listening.

Level 5: Empatic Listening 

Empathic levels of listening are listening with the intent to understand. You’re not trying to come up with something to say to make them feel good and you’re not only listening to just what you want to. 

Instead, you listen with your entire body you have to take a step back and during this time of listening put yourself in their shoes and try to understand how they feel. 

This is how psychologists say fruitful and long-lasting relationships are formed by two people understanding and having empathy for each other. 

When you’re listening sit down, slow down your talking and focus really on how the other person feels what they’re saying what type of story they are trying to tell what helps a lot is to read their body language and use your body language to show that you’re actually engaged. 

You can do this mostly by just a little bit of mimicking but also by other nonverbal methods.

Sometimes just repeating back what someone says is a form of showing that you’re actually 100% listening and engaged.

Sometimes just repeating back with someone says is a form of showing them that you’re 100% listening and engaged but sometimes this can be a form of the level to pretend to listen. 

So, I highly advise combining it with great facial expressions using your tone properly and restating what they said in your own words not just in theirs. She made you feel worthless. Oh, my goodness he cheated on you with three other girls that are so amazing. 

He would buy you a dozen roses just to make you smile. I wish I could find someone like that the key to being a great conversationalist is being a great listener and the key to being a great listener is by actually listening with your body and your emotions. 

Now a lot of times I know guys have trouble showing and using emotions but if used correctly they can help spark a relationship like never before. You don’t even have to use this just in dating. 

If you use this in your business life. You’ll open up all kinds of opportunities. Put yourself in someone else’s shoes. Feel what they felt it’ll help you understand them better and because of that. 

They’ll have a greater liking for you to sum up the peer of listening. Think about this most guys think they have to solve every problem or offer an answer but many times girls just want to get out their feelings to think out loud and for someone to understand them. 

Sometimes, it really is just as simple as listening. So, please mention your suggestion about 5 levels of listening.

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