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10 Movies You Should Watch To Boost Your Mood And Energy

10 Movies You Should Watch To Boost Your Mood And Energy

If you’re like me, you love films. Movies have the power to effect our entire mood. They make us want to change ourselves and even change the world. There are films that make you cry (when you need a good cry), films that help you vent your frustrations and films that enliven you.

Here are 10 movies with themes that range from motivational to fun. This list includes Hollywood classics and Pixar titles, and every one of them has the potential to leave you feeling inspired, motivated or bring you to your happy place.

1. Meet John Doe

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    “I know a lot of you are saying, ‘What can I do? I’m just a little punk. I don’t count.’ Well, you’re dead wrong.The little punks have always counted because in the long run, the character of a country is the sum total of the character of its little punks.” – Long John Willoughby/John Doe

    Meet John Doe is the quintessential ‘fight for the underdog’ film. Gary Cooper’s character represents the John Doe’s of America. The movie includes a series of speeches about empowering the average citizen. Its theme is about the power of the people and never thinking you don’t matter just because you’re an Average Joe. Its message of hope and determination will leave you feeling self-confident, better about humanity and optimistic about the potential of the world’s citizens to enact positive change.

    2. Chariots of Fire

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      “You came to see a race today. To see someone win. It happened to be me. But I want you to do more than just watch a race. I want you to take part in it. I want to compare faith to running in a race. It’s hard. It requires concentration of will, energy of soul.” – Eric Liddell

      This film has a spiritual foundation in its message, but isn’t about religion. Eric challenges conventional thinking and questions what it means to glorify God. For those of us who are not spiritual, this can mean making your mark on the world the best way you can, regardless of how others think you should. Chariots of Fire is about endless determination, working hard towards achieving your goals, being proud of your accomplishments and doing what you love. Its infamous ‘running on the beach scene’ might be a cheesy pop culture reference, but anyone who tells you they didn’t feel at least a little inspired by that scene is lying. Nothing gets the heart pumping like watching an intense race!

      3. The King’s Speech

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        “King George VI: L-listen to me…”

        “Lionel Logue: Why should I waste my time listening to you?”

        “King George VI: Because I have a right to be heard! I have a voice!”

        “Lionel Logue: …Yes, you do. You have such perseverance, Bertie. You’re the bravest man I know. You’ll make a bloody good king.”

        The King’s Speech is the true story of the former King of England, George VI, and his journey to overcome a debilitating stammer. Not only is The King’s Speech a heartening film, it also has gorgeous cinematography. The color schemes might be cool and dark, but the plot is anything but. It’s hard to feel hopeless when you’re watching a king struggle, just like commoners. The movie makes you realize even the royals have mortifying moments and personal flaws. It will leave you renewed and determined to conquer your obstacles.

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        4. Remember the Titans

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          “This is where they fought the battle of Gettysburg. Fifty thousand men died right here on this field, fighting the same fight that we are still fighting amongst ourselves today… Listen to their souls, men. ‘I killed my brother with malice in my heart. Hatred destroyed my family.’ You listen, you take a lesson from the dead. If we don’t come together right now on this hallowed ground, we too will be destroyed, just like they were.” – Coach Boone

          This movie is a cult classic, and rightly so. If you’re not interested in sports, don’t let that deter you from watching this movie. Although it’s about a high school football team, the personal and professional obstacles the team and their coach must overcome are highly relatable. Watching the characters prevail against prejudice, and learn to work as a team, is something we can all be motivated by. Remember the Titans will make you feel ready to take on the world.

          5. Up

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            “That might sound boring, but I think the boring stuff is the stuff I remember the most.” – Russell

            Once you get past its tear-jerking opening, Up is full of feel-good moments. This is one of those go-to movies when you need a pick-me-up, or to need to feel like there’s some good left in this world (even if the world appears computer-animated). If you’re feeling low, or just kind of “blah”, Up will never fail to boost your mood.

            6. School of Rock

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              “Dude, I service society by rocking. I’m out there on the front lines liberating people with my music.” – Dewey Finn

              As the Dewey says in the film, “You’re not hardcore, unless you live hardcore.” If you need more than just a mood boost, but an energy boost as well, few movies beat School of Rock. It’s hilarious and jam-packed with classic rock anthems to pump you up. Plus, there are a few gems of actual heart-warming advice in there. Rock on, kids.

              7. The King and I
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                Kralahome: “Why are you so blind; have you no eyes to see? King tries impossible task – wishing to be scientific man who know all modern things… He will only tear himself in two, trying to be something he can never be!”

                Anna: “Of course he can never be, if those who are closest to him are unwilling to help him!”

                Another classic from the way-back machine, The King and I has a unique premise and provides a good laugh too. The silly, 1950s era “cultural differences” between the King of Siam and the English-bred schoolteacher in his court are ridiculous and entertaining. Among the one-liners, there’s also a good story about breaking down cultural barriers in order to understand one another. Add this movie to your bucket list, it’s a classic that is still relevant in modern times.

                8. Despicable Me

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                  “When we were adopted by a bald guy, I thought this would be more like ‘Annie’.” – Edith

                  Despicable Me is so enjoyable, that I don’t even mind when my little brother asks to watch it a million times. This is one of those kid movies that appeals to adults too. When you’re feeling grumpy, or extra jaded, watching this movie will easily lift your spirits. The sequel isn’t half bad either.

                  9. Cool Runnings

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                    “Hey, it doesn’t matter tomorrow if they come in first or fiftieth. Those guys have earned the right to walk into that stadium and wave their nation’s flag. That’s the single greatest honor an athlete can ever have. That’s what the Olympics are all about. Sixteen years ago I forgot that. Don’t you go and do the same.” – Irving “Irv” Blitzer

                    Pure inspiration and motivation, Cool Runnings is a film you won’t forget. This is a must-see movie. The plot, a group of native-born Jamaicans trying to train for Olympic bobsledding, provides all the comedy you could ever want. The movie is based on a true story and the raw determination of the athletes is energizing. Their story is remarkable and if you only pick one film from this entire list – watch this one.

                    10. Legally Blonde

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                      “I just don’t think that Brooke could’ve done this. Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don’t shoot their husbands, they just don’t.” – Elle Woods

                      If you’ve never seen Legally Blonde, don’t write it off as a chick flick. The lead character, Elle Woods, is a boss. Watching her disprove all the people who doubted her intelligence is truly satisfying. You’ll feel like taking on a room full of haters after seeing her slay in and out of the courtroom. And you’ll learn the famous ‘bend and snap’…just try not to break anyone’s nose.

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                      Featured photo credit: Meet John Doe/Warner Bros. Entertainment via doctormacro.com

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                      Last Updated on September 20, 2018

                      8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

                      8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

                      You go to the gym to train your muscles. You run outside or go for hikes to train your endurance. Or, maybe you do neither of those, but still wish you exercised more.

                      Well, here is how to train one of the most important parts of your body: your brain.

                      When you train your brain, you will:

                      • Avoid embarrassing situations. You remember his face, but what was his name?
                      • Be a faster learner in all sorts of different skills. No problem for you to pick up a new language or new management skill.
                      • Avoid diseases that hit as you get older. Alzheimer’s will not be affecting you.

                      So how to train your brain and improve your cognitive skills?

                      1. Work your memory

                      Twyla Tharp, a NYC-based renowned choreographer has come up with the following memory workout:

                      When she watches one of her performances, she tries to remember the first twelve to fourteen corrections she wants to discuss with her cast without writing them down.

                      If you think this is anything less than a feat, then think again. In her book The Creative Habit she says that most people cannot remember more than three.

                      The practice of both remembering events or things and then discussing them with others has actually been supported by brain fitness studies.

                      Memory activities that engage all levels of brain operation—receiving, remembering and thinking—help to improve the function of the brain.

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                      Now, you may not have dancers to correct, but you may be required to give feedback on a presentation, or your friends may ask you what interesting things you saw at the museum. These are great opportunities to practically train your brain by flexing your memory muscles.

                      What is the simplest way to help yourself remember what you see? Repetition.

                      For example, say you just met someone new:

                      “Hi, my name is George”

                      Don’t just respond with, “Nice to meet you”. Instead, say, “Nice to meet you George.”

                      Got it? Good.

                      2. Do something different repeatedly

                      By actually doing something new over and over again, your brain wires new pathways that help you do this new thing better and faster.

                      Think back to when you were three years old. You surely were strong enough to hold a knife and a fork just fine. Yet, when you were eating all by yourself, you were creating a mess.

                      It was not a matter of strength, you see. It was a matter of cultivating more and better neural pathways that would help you eat by yourself just like an adult does.

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                      And guess what? With enough repetition you made that happen!

                      But how does this apply to your life right now?

                      Say you are a procrastinator. The more you don’t procrastinate, the more you teach your brain not to wait for the last minute to make things happen.

                      Now, you might be thinking “Duh, if only not procrastinating could be that easy!”

                      Well, it can be. By doing something really small, that you wouldn’t normally do, but is in the direction of getting that task done, you will start creating those new precious neural pathways.

                      So if you have been postponing organizing your desk, just take one paper and put in its right place. Or, you can go even smaller. Look at one piece of paper and decide where to put it: Trash? Right cabinet? Another room? Give it to someone?

                      You don’t actually need to clean up that paper; you only need to decide what you need to do with it.

                      That’s how small you can start. And yet, those neural pathways are still being built. Gradually, you will transform yourself from a procrastinator to an in-the-moment action taker.

                      3. Learn something new

                      It might sound obvious, but the more you use your brain, the better its going to perform for you.

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                      For example, learning a new instrument improves your skill of translating something you see (sheet music) to something you actually do (playing the instrument).

                      Learning a new language exposes your brain to a different way of thinking, a different way of expressing yourself.

                      You can even literally take it a step further, and learn how to dance. Studies indicate that learning to dance helps seniors avoid Alzheimer’s. Not bad, huh?

                      4. Follow a brain training program

                      The Internet world can help you improve your brain function while lazily sitting on your couch. A clinically proven program like BrainHQ can help you improve your memory, or think faster, by just following their brain training exercises.

                      5. Work your body

                      You knew this one was coming didn’t you? Yes indeed, exercise does not just work your body; it also improves the fitness of your brain.

                      Even briefly exercising for 20 minutes facilitates information processing and memory functions. But it’s not just that–exercise actually helps your brain create those new neural connections faster. You will learn faster, your alertness level will increase, and you get all that by moving your body.

                      Now, if you are not already a regular exerciser, and already feel guilty that you are not helping your brain by exercising more, try a brain training exercise program like Exercise Bliss.

                      Remember, just like we discussed in #2, by training your brain to do something new repeatedly, you are actually changing yourself permanently.

                      6. Spend time with your loved ones

                      If you want optimal cognitive abilities, then you’ve got to have meaningful relationships in your life.  Talking with others and engaging with your loved ones helps you think more clearly, and it can also lift your mood.

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                      If you are an extrovert, this holds even more weight for you. At a class at Stanford University, I learned that extroverts actually use talking to other people as a way to understand and process their own thoughts.

                      I remember that the teacher told us that after a personality test said she was an extrovert, she was surprised. She had always thought of herself as an introvert. But then, she realized how much talking to others helped her frame her own thoughts, so she accepted her new-found status as an extrovert.

                      7. Avoid crossword puzzles

                      Many of us, when we think of brain fitness, think of crossword puzzles. And it’s true–crossword puzzles do improve our fluency, yet studies show they are not enough by themselves.

                      Are they fun? Yes. Do they sharpen your brain? Not really.

                      Of course, if you are doing this for fun, then by all means go ahead. If you are doing it for brain fitness, then you might want to choose another activity

                      8. Eat right – and make sure dark chocolate is included

                      Foods like fish, fruits, and vegetables help your brain perform optimally. Yet, you might not know that dark chocolate gives your brain a good boost as well.

                      When you eat chocolate, your brain produces dopamine. And dopamine helps you learn faster and remember better. Not to mention, chocolate contains flavonols, antioxidants, which also improve your brain functions.

                      So next time you have something difficult to do, make sure you grab a bite or two of dark chocolate!

                      The bottom line

                      Now that you know how to train your brain, it’s actually time to start doing.

                      Don’t just consume this content and then go on with your life as if nothing has changed. Put this knowledge into action and become smarter than ever!

                      Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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