31 Best Motivational Songs For Work, All Clean & Appropriate

If anyone knows about hard work, it’s musicians. Becoming an accomplished artist takes years of hard graft and day jobs ‘on the side’; the struggle is real until they make it big.

It makes sense then that many have penned songs to help keep their spirits up during their working days. Here are the best motivational songs for work.

“9 to 5” by Dolly Parton

Song Year: 1980

Dolly Parton certainly needs no introduction, and the song “9 to 5” is a well-known hit. Parton recorded the music for the movie of the same name, “9 to 5”, earning her a Grammy Award and an Academy Award nomination.

There’s something about the song that can lift the listener, even if their day at work is as bad as the movie suggests.

“We Are the Champions” by Queen

Song Year: 1977

This rock anthem is a tribute written by legendary music genius Freddie Mercury, and it motivates many to work harder. The uniting theme makes it a perfect team spirit anthem for a corporate function, sports activity, or personal mantra.

The other side of the single is “We Will Rock You,” which continues the theme of winning regardless of the adversaries. “We Are the Champions,” which Mercury made all the more famous with his pitch-perfect voice, is a dedication to his fans.

It’s perfect for team-building.

“Don’t Worry, Be Happy” by Bobby McFerrin

Song Year: 1988

Some days it’s easier to accept McFerrin’s advice and outlook on life, but the sentiment has helped make “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” a timeless classic. The song resonated with listeners and became number-one on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart despite being a weird mix of a cappella, reggae, and jazz.

The song was so popular that it unseated “Sweet Child of Mine.” What makes the hit so unusual is that McFerrin uses his voice to make all the sounds.

“Don’t worry, be happy” is a great philosophy to apply to any job.

“Roar” by Katy Perry

Song Year: 2013

Katy Perry can make any project look fun. “Roar” is the slogan for the worker who has finally reached the breaking point and finds the guts to stand up and shout.

The lyrics aren’t overly mindblowing, but the commercial hit song can lift the voices of the underappreciated. Critics felt the piece used overdone cliches and simple rhymes, but the crowd appreciated it.

“Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor

Song Year: 1982

This song is all about beating the odds and is the legendary soundtrack to Rocky III. Listeners find the music inspirational because the franchise and the song it's most associated with are about overcoming obstacles.

Sylvester Stallone commissioned the piece for the film and used the band’s original demo, including tiger growls and all. The lyrics speak about hardships, facing challenges, and rising above — that if you try hard enough, you can win despite the odds.

“Manic Monday” by the Bangles

Song Year: 1986

Multi-talented singer-songwriter Prince wrote “Manic Monday” but not many know about his connection as he used the pseudonym Christopher for his writing credit.

Of course, The Bangles made this timeless classic their own. The moody track, which was the band’s first hit, has a melodramatic theme that is wonderfully lyrical about the joys of weekends and the gloom of Mondays.

“Titanium” by David Guetta featuring Sia

Song Year: 2011

Appropriately enough for a song named “Titanium,” Sia delivers powerful vocals in this track. Her energy is aided by deep lyrics, an infectious vibe from the synthesizer, and, of course, David Guetta.

This brilliant song is about endurance and staying strong despite everything negative surrounding you. The original version featured Mary J. Blige, but Sia wrote the song for Alica Keys.

“You Learn” by Alanis Morisette

Song Year: 1996

“You Learn” has aged like fine wine, speaking to each generation that believes they can do it better. The lyrics focus on the importance of learning from our mistakes and bad decisions. Others interpret the song as meaning that if you take your time and pay attention, you’ll achieve your goals.

Alanis Morisette scored a big hit with this record in the UK and the US, with critics calling the song a standout.

“Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman

Song Year: 1988

Chapman is a brilliant songwriter with an edgy indie sound that explores deeply emotional themes. “Fast Car” is a folk rock arrangement that speaks to people who know the struggle is real.

The sentiments hidden within the lyrics are breathtaking. They describe the real-life drama many people on the margins of society experience and how much they want to escape reality. Rolling Stone magazine listed it at number 71 on their 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

“It’s 5 O’Clock Somewhere” by Alan Jackson

Song Year: 2003

This song embodies the long work day under a mean boss and excessive stress. The song is a tribute to that little joke we tell ourselves about when it’s okay to pour our first drink to take the edge off.

It’s a feel-good country song featuring one of country music’s best, Jackson, and party favorite, Jimmy Buffet. The song won a CMA Award in 2003 for Vocal Event of the Year.

“Hard Day’s Night” by The Beatles

Song Year: 1964

Everyone can relate to the demands of a tough job and the long hours. The hit song was written by Lennon, with help from McCartney, but was inspired by Ringo.

It’s a work anthem as we all rush to work to earn our keep and spend it on people we care for. The song is the soundtrack of the Beatles movie “Hard Day’s Night,” and the single topped the charts.

The Beatles still motivate people to dance.

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