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Thursday, December 11, 2014

The 3 Levels of Listening

"YOU'RE NOT LISTENING TO ME!!" I'm sure we've heard that statement on quite a few occasions before.  How can something seem so simple be so hard?  The answer is us! Let's face it, we're all human and we love to relate with others and speak about ourselves.  However, sometimes as humans, we also want to be heard.  Therefore, when we seek someone out to "vent" or "find" answers, we go to another human for it.  Unfortunately, they too love to relate and speak about themselves that it can get frustrating, thus yelling said statement above! 

How do we then focus in the art of listening?  It's by consciously identifying what level of listening you use when hearing someone out.

Level 1:  Internal Listening
This type of listening happens when you are listening to your own inner voice.  You may hear what the other is saying but you are also formulating your own opinions, judgments, stories, etc. and itching to share them.  Your head is probably saying things such as:

  • "I had an experience just like that."
  • "This is boring."
  • "I'm hungry and I want to eat."
  • "I might say something stupid."
Level 2:  Focused Listening
In level 2, you ar now focusing on the other person in front of you.  All of the attention is directed to that person.  You are free from distractions and listening for what the person is saying and feeling.  You can empathize, clarify, and collaborate with the person in level 2 listening.  

Level 3:  Global Listening
At level 3, you are aware of the energy between you and the other person.  You are also aware of how that energy is changing - you detect happiness, sadness, lightheartedness, etc.  You are conscious of the underlying mood, tone, and impact of the conversation.  

Next time you're accused of not listening, sit with that person for a minute, erase your personal agenda from the conversation, and focus on them.  It will bring wonders to your relationships! 

1 comment :

  1. I have practiced this three levels of listening depending on the person I am talking to. :)
    visiting from turn it up tuesday.