Need a Pick-Me-Up? Here Are the 35 Songs That Lift Our Spirits Every Time

We all have those days when life feels like a giant ball of "bleh." Sometimes things don't work out in our favor or we just have an inexplicable heaviness weighing down on us. It's important to acknowledge those feelings and maybe even take some time to wallow in them. But it's also important to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and remember that everything is going to be OK. Because you — yes, you — are the sh*t.

It's not always easy getting out of that funk. There are many ways to deal with mental and emotional woes, but one of the most universal pick-me-ups is music. The perfect tune has the power to turn a frown upside down and relieve you of any stress and anxieties you might have. So if you're looking for a playlist of jams that will boost your confidence, make you feel like busting a move, and/or motivate you to overcome any obstacle, then you've come to the right place, my friend. Here are the top inspirational song picks from our POPSUGAR employees (and yes, there's a LOT of Beyoncé)!

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"Before I Let Go" by Beyoncé

"What's not to love about this Beyoncé cover? It's upbeat and comes with its own viral dance craze."

— Amanda Green, creative strategist

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"Sucker" by Jonas Brothers

"I was a die-hard Jonas Brothers fan growing up, and the first comeback single they released just makes me want to get up and move. Whether I'm on the treadmill, walking to work, or just trying to lift my mood on a bad day, this song is THE jam."

— Samantha Brodsky, assistant fitness editor

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"Dog Days Are Over" by Florence + The Machine

"Is it physically possible to listen to this song without screaming it at the top of your lungs and dancing around the house? In my experience, I don't think so. From its pounding, catchy beat to Florence Welch's repeated refrain of "the dog days are over," it's an instant mood booster."

— Quinn Keaney, entertainment editor

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"Waving Through a Window" by Ben Platt (From Broadway's Dear Evan Hansen )

"I love Broadway musicals, but few compare to Dear Evan Hansen. I can't tell you how many times I've listened to the soundtrack when it first came out. The music made me laugh, cry, and then cry some more, but nothing makes me want to sing at the top of my lungs more than the hit number 'Waving Through a Window.'"

— Kelsie Gibson, associate editor, celebrity and entertainment

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"Suite: Judy Blue Eyes" by Crosby Stills & Nash

"This song sounds like a sunny day. More specifically, the first sunny day after a gray winter when you just want to get day drunk and laugh. I listen to it any time I find myself feeling irritable at work and need to snap out of it. It also happens to have three of my favorite characteristics in a song: lovely vocal harmonies, a melodic bass line, and multiple movements (it is a 'suite,' after all). It's seven-minutes long, and I'm usually happy by the end."

— Nancy Einhart, executive editor, vice president of content

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"Badlands" by Bruce Springsteen

"If you're not indoctrinated fully into the casual cult of Bruce Springsteen, this is a great place to start ('Glory Days' is for rookies). The Boss writes great lyrics overall, but the ones in 'Badlands' are the purest representation of what he sings about. Sure, the deck is stacked against you. Sure, it's hard out there. But we're not going to stop striving toward a better tomorrow. This song also features a deadly sax solo, a searing guitar riff, and the fist-pumping lyrics, 'For the ones who had a notion, a notion deep inside / That it ain't no sin to be glad you're alive.' If that doesn't get you motivated, I don't know what will."

— Julie Calnero, email marketing manager

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"Idol" by BTS Feat. Nicki Minaj

"This is a self-love anthem and 100 percent absolute *jam*. Wait for Nicki's verse at the end, because it takes things to the next level."

— Maggie Ryan, assistant fitness editor

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"Formation" by Beyoncé

"If Black Girl Magic was a song, it would be 'Formation.' For me, it's the ultimate reminder of my strength, beauty, and self-worth as a black woman — I listen to it whenever I feel small, and it gives me the fierce, take-no-prisoners energy that I need to keep going. It's almost like Beyoncé is in my ear, telling me to twirl on my haters, take what's mine, and f*cking slay."

— Britt Stephens, content director, celebrity and entertainment

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"Send Me on My Way" by Rusted Root

"This is one song that cheers me up when I'm feeling down is. The only time I've ever heard it anywhere (outside of my personal Spotify) is in the movie Matilda, and that's one of the reasons why I love it. This song inspires me partly because it plays toward the end of the movie when Matilda has overcome her greatest obstacles and gets to live out a happy life for the foreseeable future. It also inspires me because it has this upbeat, carefree rhythm to it all throughout. From the penny whistle to the gibberish-sounding lyrics (which I still like to pretend I can sing along to), this song definitely lifts my mood every time I hear it."

— Chanel Vargas, editorial assistant, trending and viral features

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"Cup of Tea" by Kacey Musgraves

"I can always count on Kacey Musgraves's music to give me a boost of confidence. This song reminds me that I can't please everyone all the time, and that's OK! Everyone has their own faults and flaws, but that's what makes us all unique. To this day, listening to the bridge still makes me tear up."

— KG, associate editor, celebrity and entertainment

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"Valerie" by Mark Ronson Feat. Amy Winehouse

"I don't care where I am or what I'm doing; if this song comes on, I'm getting out of whatever funk I'm in, turning the volume as high as it can go, and belting this out loudly. This energy of this cover is basically contagious, which is why it's also my go-to karaoke jam. It never fails to put me in a good mood, and as a massive Amy Winehouse fan, it's one of the songs that helps me remember her at her best."

— BS, content director, celebrity and entertainment

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"I Been On (Homecoming Live)" by Beyoncé

"You can't tell me anything when I'm listening to this song. The confidence that permeates every second of this jam grabs a hold of me and shakes out negative, self-deprecating thoughts. I get chills when Bey says, 'I'm bigger than life, my name in the lights / I'm the capital B, I don't need no hype.' It helps that my name starts with a 'B,' so it feels even more applicable. By the end of the song, I feel unstoppable."

— Brea Cubit, editorial assistant, celebrity and entertainment

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"Q.U.E.E.N." by Janelle Monáe Feat. Erykah Badu

"This song is an instant confidence boost. I love how Monáe encourages people to unapologetically embrace their true selves and let out their inner weirdos. From the beat to the mention of twerking in the mirror, I can't but to smile and dance along any time this comes on."

— BC, editorial assistant, celebrity and entertainment

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"Living Out Loud" by Cory Sipper

"This song is from an album my mom listened to all the time when I was younger. It's one of those 'sing along as loudly as you can in your car while crying' type of cathartic songs. When I'm in pain and can't get past it, the lines 'Start living out loud / Without your story / Like you've never been hurt / Or had to say I'm sorry' feel so sweet, hopeful, and helpful. Sometimes when things are bad, I need a song about starting over with clean slates and new beginnings."

— Bryce Aston, copy editor

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"Freedom" by Beyoncé Feat. Kendrick Lamar

"Not only do I love this song because it's two of my all-time favorite artists collaborating, but it's also such a commanding declaration of strength and aspiration. I can almost feel the beat physically pick me up and push me to keep moving forward."

— BC, editorial assistant, celebrity and entertainment

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"Gloria" by Laura Branigan

"I can't tell you how many times I've listened to this on loop. The 1982 pop track is an oldie but a goodie, and it never ceases to get my blood pumping. In fact, I'm pretty sure people in other cars have heard me screaming "CALLING GLO-RI-AAAAAAAAA" on multiple occasions — and I'm not even ashamed."

— Maggie Panos, Voices Editor

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"Young Americans" by David Bowie

"I usually go for more melodramatic David Bowie music, but this rollicking soul pop song is one of my favorite feel-good songs. There is so much going on in this song — the sassy saxophone, the giddy drums, the triumphant falsetto, the rapidly accelerating lyrics — that it can distract me away from any funk."

— NE, Executive Editor, Vice President of Content

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"Spanish Castle Magic" by Jimi Hendrix

"Sometimes the best way to overcome a mental funk is to escape into a sort of fantasy tune. That's what "Spanish Castle Magic" is to me: a dreamland. Hendrix's soulful vocals and imaginative lyrics provide me with a few minutes of relief as I picture myself far away at a groovy place where clouds overflow with cotton candy."

— BC, Editorial Assistant, Celebrity and Entertainment

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"You Make My Dreams" by Daryl Hall & John Oates

"I could start singing now! Whenever this song lands on my playlist, I feel overjoyed with happiness. The upbeat tune could liven up any dreary day and definitely has me dancing in my seat. If you're feeling down, I highly recommend giving this classic jam a try!"

— Haley Lyndes, Editorial Coordinator, Growth and Strategic Features

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"Juice" by Lizzo

"This song is like a pep talk from your feistiest, funniest friend. I mean, it starts with 'Mirror, mirror on the wall, don't say it 'cuz I know I'm cute!'"

— AG, Creative Strategist

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"Your Latter Will Be Greater" by Martha Munizzi

"Gospel music always assured me that I have the mental, emotional, and spiritual strength to get through any battle. This song reminds me that if I've hit a rough patch, something great is on the horizon, and I have to remain hopeful and faithful that I'm inching toward a breakthrough. When the choir belts 'The best is yet to come,' I'm overwhelmed with hope, and I usually end up getting out a good cry."

— BC, Editorial Assistant, Celebrity and Entertainment

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"Don't Kill My Vibe" by Sigrid

"I could technically listen to any Sigrid song and feel better about my mental state, but "Don't Kill My Vibe" is the first track of hers that I fell in love with all the way back in 2017, and that love hasn't dulled one bit since. It's the kind of song that makes me feel like I should be standing on a stage singing it to everyone who's ever wronged me with my middle finger in the air. How could that not give you a lift, you know?"

— QK, Entertainment Editor

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"APESH*T" by The Carters

"The beat is incredible and there's something about Beyoncé rapping superbly that motivates me to get stuff done. It's a great song to blast loudly when I'm at the gym or play in the background while I'm studying. I can't focus on tasks when some songs are playing, but something about this one gets me in the zone."

— Zara Patel, Editorial Intern

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"Work This Body" by WALK THE MOON

"The lyrics are so catchy and really motivate me to 'work my body' and 'burn this flame' (which for the longest time I thought was 'burn this fat,' lol) It also inspires me to believe that all my work will pay off in 'just a matter of time.'"

— Vilte S. Rooney, Talent Associate

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"Stronger" by The Score

"I was introduced to The Score during Summer 2018 and immediately fell in love with how powerful the band's sound is. This particular bop really resonates with me because it motivates me to believe in my inner strength. Life isn't easy, but no matter what, I can bounce back from any trial and rise even stronger than I was before."

— BC, Editorial Assistant, Celebrity and Entertainment

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"Tired of Being Alone" by Al Green

"This song feels like having a satisfying stretch under a light blanket while the AC blasts on a hot night. The warm brass and cool vocals combine to provide pure, cozy comfort. While Al Green is never a slouch in the singing department, his vocal stylings on this track are like the aural equivalent of finding true love."

— NE, executive editor, vice president of content

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"Go the Distance" by Roger Bart

"Just try listening to this song without feeling like you can charge up a goddamn mountain. (True fans should also listen to Lucas Grabeel's iconic pop cover from the criminally underrated Disneymania 5 album.)"

— MR, assistant fitness editor

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"Rainbow" by Kacey Musgraves

"There's not enough time in the day for me to talk about how much I love Kacey Musgraves, and the final track on Golden Hour is like getting a hug from your grandma while also being wrapped up in a weighted blanket. It's the quintessential uplifting song you need to hear when life's seemingly constant storms become too much to bear. It reminds me to take a look around and see how fortunate I am, despite the chaos. My favorite part, coincidentally, is the very end, when Musgraves croons, 'It'll all be alright.' I'm usually inclined to believe her."

— BS, content director, celebrity and entertainment

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"I Live For That Energy" by Armin van Buuren

"Uplifting, empowering — the drop just transcends. This is the song that gets me through my hardest workouts."

— MR, assistant fitness editor

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"This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)" by Talking Heads

"I've loved the playful melody of this song since I was a kid, but it wasn't until I hit my 20s that I really considered the lyrics. Even though frontman David Byrne wrote it as a love song, I began leaning on it as a mental note to myself that I am right where I need to be. It always puts me in a better mood and reminds me 'I got plenty of time.'"

— BS, content director, celebrity and entertainment

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"Clean" by Taylor Swift

"Pretty much any Taylor Swift song can put me in a good mood, but I have a soft spot for 'Clean' from 1989. Not only is the imagery in the song so beautiful, but the lyrics also remind you to stay positive even through life's storms. Let's just say I definitely cried when she performed it live during her Reputation stadium tour in the pouring rain."

— KG, associate editor, celebrity and entertainment

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"I'll Take You There" by The Staples Singers

"This has unofficially become the song I play at the start of every vacation. It's swampy, gritty, spiritual, and sultry all at once. It starts with a bang and grinds to several crescendoes. Mavis Staples's vocals are joyful, but the song gives every instrument space, which makes me think about how beautiful it is when people make music together — and that always puts me in a good mood."

— NE, executive editor, vice president of content

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"Headlines" by Drake

"I don't know if it's the energetic beat, heavy staccato, or audacious lyrics, but from the second this song starts, I feel like a more badass version of myself. 'Headlines,' from Drake's 2011 Take Care album (perhaps his best, if you ask me), also reminds me of good times with good friends, screaming the lyrics at the top of our lungs at his concerts. I play it whenever the universe has me f*cked up (so, a lot), and it instantly hypes me up and gets me back on my game; if I was an athlete, this would be my walk-on song. They know, they know, they know. . ."

— BS, content director, celebrity and entertainment

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“This Feeling” by The Chainsmokers and Kelsea Ballerini

"Whenever this song comes on, all I want to do is belt it into the abyss with a huge smile on my face. The chorus is seriously catchy, and it's a feel-good song about taking a risk on a relationship that not everyone approves of (which is surprisingly empowering)."

— SB, assistant fitness editor

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"Unstoppable" by Sia

"This song stays on repeat when I'm feeling down. I tend to get lost in my head about a LOT of things. So whenever I feel unsure of myself or am having doubts about my career (or life in general), I turn this song on, and it almost immediately changes my mood and makes me feel so much more powerful."

— Danielle Jackson, editorial assistant, trending and viral features