Rational Philosophy: I very much want to do well but it is not essential. When I demand that I do well I am likely to feel anxious before my performance and shame and depressed after my performance when I fail to do well. Demanding that I do well is likely to lead to pernicious self-rating. Due to this demand on myself I will be inclined to rate myself as good, great, or worthwhile following a good performance and I will be inclined to rate myself as bad, inadequate, or worthless following a relatively poor performance. Both types of rating of myself, my essence, my personhood work against the attainment of my goals and long term interests. As an alternative it would be better to limit my rating to my performances and then I would tend to feel healthy feelings of concern in advance of my performances and healthy feelings of sorrow, displeasure, and regret after my poor performances. These healthy negative feelings will help me achieve my long term goals.
Irrational Belief #2: You must treat me well.
Rational Philosophy: I very much want you to treat me well but in reality you do not have to treat me well. When I demand that you treat me well and you do not I will be inclined to put you down as a person. This will lead to unhealthy anger. It would be better if I merely put down your behavior towards me and did not rate you as a person. If I do this type of sensible thinking about what you have done I will feel sorrow, displeasure, annoyance, or healthy anger at what you have done, but I will not be angry with you as a person. These healthy negative feelings will help me live well with you and to decide how best to relate to you if I choose to over the long run.
Irrational Belief #3: The world must be easy.
Rational Philosophy: I really wish that the world was easy, but unfortunately, it sometimes is not and the world really does not absolutely have to be as I would ideally like it to be. If I demand that the world is easy I will be inclined to believe I cannot tolerate the discomforts of dealing with hassles, injustices, blocks and discomforts which come from pursuing my goals. I will tend to procrastinate and escape discomfort through the misuse of substances. I will be less likely to achieve my goals as I avoid the discomfort of addressing problems and obstacles. I will be inclined to seek magical solutions rather than to persevere at trying to cope with the world in sensible ways that are more likely to work in the long run.
Remain vigilant for the presence of these three irrational beliefs. Think about the rational philosophies outlined above. Push yourself to adopt these rational philosophies and to act in ways that are consistent with them so that you see your way effectively through life and achieve your long term goals.