Imagine clothing racks where all the items are stuffed on hangers and shoved onto the racks in no particular order. Crumpled shiny shirts like the ones John Travolta wore in Saturday Night Fever, co-mingling with pairs of brightly colored spandex leggings circa 1980. In between the disarray of out-of-date, out-of-style garments a lone little black dress, pristine in appearance, hangs in waiting, hoping to be seen in and amongst the mismatched, discounted goods.

Have you ever felt like that lone, pristine little black dress, overlooked and under valued? Not being seen or heard in amongst the crowd.

I know I have, many times.

Here’s some harsh truth…

We, my friends, are that dress any time we show up as “less than”, small or insignificant. It is our actions and the way we treat ourselves that places us on that cramped rack in the bargain basement.

I didn’t get that concept until one day the following quote landed on my desk:

“If you feel like others are not treating you with love and respect, check your price tag. Perhaps you subconsciously marked yourself down. Because it is YOU who tells others what you’re worth by showing them what you are willing to accept for your time and attention. So get off the clearance rack. If you don’t value and respect yourself, wholeheartedly, no one else will either.” Unknown

And then it made sense as to why I was attracting all the wrong people into my life and why I felt under valued and not seen. I was playing small and treating myself as an insignificant person so it's no wonder I became a bargain basement item. The reality is, we teach people to treat us as bargain basement items any time we…

make self-deprecating comments in an attempt to be funny
exhibit people-pleasing behavior, for example, saying “yes” when we really want to say “no”
make someone else a priority when they make us their option (i.e., you change your plans for them, but they don’t return the favor ever)
do things that don’t fit who we are in order to be liked
act like someone we aren’t in order to fit in
de-value ourselves in business by giving away our services

So, here’s my question, how ready are you to get off the bargain basement clearance rack? Because here’s the reality…you can. We all have the capability to say good-bye to the mismatched, discounted goods on that cluttered rack.

Tips for getting off the clearance rack and out of the bargain basement:

Practice the art of self-care. Not just once, but regularly. Every day if you can. Even if you just take 10 minutes of quiet time for yourself. Doing something nice for you tells your psyche that you are worth the effort and that impacts how you show up.

Pay attention to negative self-talk. Your brain doesn’t know fact from fiction, the truth from a lie. It relies on you to tell it what's so. Anytime you say something negative about yourself your brain is “nodding” in agreement and will do it’s best to provide you with proof to back up your statements.

We need to drop the Wonder Woman or Superman routine and ask for help. Some of the strongest, most courageous people I know are the ones who aren’t afraid to ask for help.

Remember that “no” is a complete sentence. Instead of saying “yes” when you really don’t feel it, say “no”. You’re not only doing yourself a favor, you’re doing the other person a favor too.

Make yourself a priority. Doing so is not selfish. If anything it’s self-less, because you can’t give from an empty tank. Say “yes” to you more.

Don't give away the farm to get business. If you're in business for yourself, remember that your services are not just comprised of what you do, but they include your heart, your time, your intellectual property, as well as your energy. Those are huge value adds. People that really want to work with you will pay for what you's called an equal exchange of energy.

Follow your heart, because it will never steer your wrong.

Be unapologetically you. Who you are is amazing and you don’t ever have to be someone you’re not in order to be loved, seen, heard, liked, or respected. Anyone who’s meant to be in your world will see your value and love you just as you are.

Remember, the things we have or what we do for others is not a measurement of our value. Our value is measured by how we feel about ourselves. Here's to staying out of the bargain basement, because we don't belong there!

Author's Bio: 

Pam Thomas, M.S., PCC, RMT is a fear squasher, limiting belief buster, "not good enough" survivor (a.k.a certified coach and intuitive counselor). For more information on the services she provides, please visit or connect with her on Facebook;