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These 10 Songs Will Get You Pumped to Follow Your Dreams

These 10 Songs Will Get You Pumped to Follow Your Dreams

Like most of you, I’m sure, I love music. It plays a huge role in my life: whether I’m at the gym, at home or at the office (oops!), nothing gives me more joy or energy than to listen to my favourite tunes. They perk me up when I’m feeling down or sluggish, give me food for thought when inspiration fails me and egg me on when my motivation flags. In other words, music has had my back in times both high and low and I firmly believe that there is a song or melody out there for pretty much any occasion!

On that note, today I’d like to share my go-to playlist for when I need a little mojo to chase my dreams. You know the score: some days, the will to boldly go after what we want is lacking and we find ourselves uninspired, unmotivated and bored. Ugh! In times like these, there is nothing better than plugging your earphones in, shutting out the world and letting brilliant, uplifting music wash over you. After just a couple of songs (or more, if the doldrums have really hit me), I feel refreshed and raring to go!

The following songs are a mix between good, old-fashioned (and probably more than a little cheesy) pop, rough and ready rap and soulful R&B. What they all have in common, though, is that they will get you pumped to follow your dreams! Ready? Let’s go!

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1. Journey – Don’t Stop Believin’

Don’t stop believing / Hold on to that feeling

Don’t Stop Believing by Journey is a bona fide classic and has its place in any motivational playlist. The melody is rousing and the lyrics, uplifting, so press “play” when you’re in need of a boost!

2. Alicia Keys – Empire State Of Mind (Part II) Broken Down

I’mma make it by any means / Got a pocket full of dreams

Alicia Keys’ beautiful rendition of Empire State of Mind (Part II) captures all of the Big Apple’s promise. The soaring vocals coupled with the inspiring words make this song the perfect companion for chasing dreams!

3. Irina Menzel – Let It Go

It’s time to see what I can do / To test the limits and break through

Let It Go is one of my favourite songs of all times, so it isn’t surprising to see it on this list. It’s the perfect song to belt out when you need to muster your strength and face those epic challenges!

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4. Iggy Azalea – Impossible Is Nothing

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HgT5WLqWfF0

I shall never let them see me sweat / Promise to want for more until my very last breath

Iggy Azalea might not be for everyone, but this song never fails to get me pumped up. Hearing her talk about her struggles and her steely will to succeed will definitely motivate you to reach for the stars!

5. Darin Zanyar – Be What You Wanna Be

I know you could reach the top / Make sure that you won’t stop

This song is definitely an acquired taste, but the lyrics contain a rare optimism that’ll have you tapping your feet and raring to go!

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6. Israel “IZ” Kamakawiwo’ole – Somewhere Over The Rainbow / What A Wonderful World

Someday I’ll wish upon a star / Wake up where the clouds are far behind me

Another classic beautifully rendered by the legendary Israel “IZ” Kamakawiwo’ole, this song will open your eyes to the beauty of the world.

7. Eddie Vedder – Rise

Gonna rise up / Turning mistakes into gold

Rise is a glorious ode to adventure penned by none other than Pearl Jam’s own Eddie Vedder for the epic movie Into the Wild. Its rousing, hopeful melody will ignite your wanderlust!

8. R. Kelly – The World’s Greatest

And I’m that little bit of hope / When my back’s against the rope

This touching ode to Mohammed Ali serves as a reminder that even in the darkest hour, there is still hope. Listen to this song when the going gets tough.

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9. Eminem – Lose Yourself

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmXumtgwtak

You only get one shot / Do not miss your chance to blow

Eminem’s Lose Yourself is on a great deal of motivational playlists, and with good reason: it’s a veritable anthem to hard work and a reminder to always seize opportunities as soon as they present themselves to us. Carpe that diem!

10. Katy Perry – Firework

Baby, you’re a firework / Come on, let your colours burst

No motivational playlist is complete without Firework by Katy Perry! This song has been my ally on many a difficult run. Its inspirational lyrics and good, old-fashioned poppy fun never fails to put a smile on my face!

Sometimes, all it takes to put you back on the path to success is the right attitude… and the right song! What is your go-to song to put you in a dream-chasing mood? 

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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The Gentle Art of Saying No

The Gentle Art of Saying No

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

  1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
  2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
  3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
  4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
  5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
  6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
  7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
  8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
  9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
  10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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