4 types of evaluative beliefs

Last week, we saw the 12 beliefs Ellis believed slowed us down. What was common in them? Words like ‘should,’ ‘need,’ ‘must’ made them sound like demands. We can group these beliefs in 4 types of evaluative thinking that pose challenges for us.

1. Evaluative Belief- Demandingness

I mustEllis used to call this ‘musturbation.’ People who have this kind of thinking belief that certain conditions like love, success or approval are absolute musts. There are three kinds of musts-

  1. Demands about our self– leads to ego disturbance, which we covered in an earlier post.
  2. Demands about others– leads to discomfort disturbance
  3. Demands about the world– also leads to discomofort disturbance

These give rise to 3 other kinds of evaluative thinking.

2. Awfulising Evaluative Belief


We exaggerate what happened in the past, present and future, using words like awful, terrible or horrible. We see what happened as the worst that could happen. So if you failed a course in the past and thought that was the end of the world, you were awfulising.

3. Discomfort intolerance- Evaluative Belief


A.ka. I-can’t-stand-it-it is. You can’t stand it if someone makes a mistake. Or forgets to do their work. Or crosses you. The list goes on.

4. People rating- Evaluative Belief

If you extend an evaluation of a characteristic to come to a conclusion about a person as a whole, you’re a people rater. So if you tell yourself, I did a bad thing, so I’m a bad person, you’re people rating.

Managing your thinking

Look to the ABCDE model and the technique we discussed last week to dispute your irrational beliefs.

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