Have you ever felt put down, bullied, or teased? About 20% of people ages 12-18 are bullied in the United States, so there’s a good chance you have.
Many people around this world share this feeling, including musicians.
If you have ever wanted some inspiration to stand up for yourself, give some of these songs a listen.
In this article, we will cover some of the best songs about standing up for yourself.
“I Will Not Bow” by Breaking Benjamin
Song year: 2009
It’s right in the title: “I Will Not Bow” by Breaking Benjamin is about going face-to-face with the naysayers and standing up for yourself.
This post-grunge song tells you to shut out the world and focus on yourself. You do not have to fall because your detractors tell you to.
It does take somewhat of a vengeful turn, but the chorus is worth repeating to yourself when people pressure you into changing who you are to appease them.
“It’s My Life” by Talk Talk
Song year: 1984
While this song details a romantic relationship where your partner mistreats you, you can apply it to any relationship.
You do not have to convince yourself that someone who mistreats you is a good person. You can live your life however you want. The new wave band Talk Talk’s song “It’s My Life” reminds you of that.
“Survive” by Rise Against
Song year: 2006
When it seems like everyone around you is living their best life, Rise Against reminds you that that is not realistic. Hard times are a part of life, and they are often inevitable.
What matters the most is how you survive your struggles, learn from your hardships, and strive to improve.
If you ever feel alone in your troubles, listen to Rise Against’s “Survive.” This punk rock song will remind you that everyone gets hurt sometimes, but you can always climb out of the darkness.
“Seventy Times 7” by Brand New
Song year: 2001
When you want to vent and blow off steam, consider listening to the pop-punk diss track “Seventy Times 7” by Brand New. It is violent at times, but sometimes you just want to yell at your bully.
If your wounds are fresh, Brand New’s angsty lyrics might teach you a few new insults. You can freely imagine fighting your enemy and winning the battle.
“Get Up, Stand Up” by Bob Marley & The Wailers
Song year: 1973
Bob Marley and Peter Tosh wrote “Get Up, Stand Up” about their fight for religious freedom in Jamaica. However, you can relate to the lyrics of this reggae song no matter why you need to stand up for yourself.
Some people might talk down to you about your beliefs or values. Instead of letting their words get to you, you can stand your ground and fight for your rights.
Fun fact: this was the last song that Bob Marley performed before his death.
“Say Less” by Origami Angel
Song year: 2019
This emo/indie rock song by the band Origami Angel tells the story of someone telling a person that they cannot change for them. If you feel pressured to change for someone, “Say Less” teaches you that some people need to accept you for you.
Also, the song talks about some people who are just needlessly mean and make fun of you for no real reason. You do not need to put up with them.
If you need some inspiration to cut off a toxic person from your life, this is one of the best songs about standing up for yourself to listen to.
“Undefeated” by Incubus
Song year: 2017
Sometimes it feels like everyone is working against you and you start losing hope. However, this pop-rock anthem will remind you that you’re still alive and you have a future.
Most people have run into a dark spot in their lives where everything feels meaningless. But “Undefeated” reinforces that you have something left to offer this world, even if it hurts right now.
You’re still here for a reason, you just need to fight your way out of the hole.
“Nobody’s Fool” by Cinderella
Song year: 1986
Cinderella’s power ballad “Nobody’s Fool” discusses the end of a toxic relationship. If you are hurting from a breakup and find that your ex won’t let you get over them, this song may inspire you to stand up.
You do not need to feel held back by someone who is no longer in your life. Cinderella reminds you to speak your truth and move on with your life.
“Movin’ Out (Anthony’s Song)” by Billy Joel
Song year: 1977
Sometimes you need to stand up to your family. If they are pressuring you to live your life a certain way, you can probably relate to the classic rock song “Movin’ Out.”
This song describes several characters who work blue-collar jobs and want to follow a specific, hardworking path to success.
When you want to carve your path, you can visualize yourself as Anthony and create a future for yourself.
“Liquid Fire” by Gojira
Song year: 2012
“Liquid Fire” is a progressive metal song about how you need to tune out what others say and rely on yourself. Once you build up the strength within yourself, you can more readily tell others off when they try to take you down.
Some people feel the need to put up with those who hurt them to avoid being alone. Gojira teaches you that it is better to be alone than to stand with those who do not have your best interests in mind.
“Everything to Everyone” by Everclear
Song year: 1997
This alternative rock song warns against stretching yourself too thin to appease everyone. It can lead to you becoming worn out and a fragment of who you once were.
If you are in a situation where you are trying to please others, listen to “Everything to Everyone” by Everclear. They tell you to put yourself first to keep yourself sane, even if that means telling someone off.
“You’re So Vain” by Carly Simon
Song year: 1972
If you have an ex who won’t leave you alone, it’s time to stand up to them. There’s a good chance that you can relate to Carly Simon’s soft rock hit “You’re So Vain.”
She tells the tale of a conceited player who does not realize the impact he has on people’s lives.
The next time you see this player, you might feel like standing up for yourself and telling them off for how they use people.
“Adjustments” by Smile Empty Soul
Song year: 2006
Getting manipulated by someone you trust is one of the toughest experiences. The alternative metal band Smile Empty Soul has a few songs about standing up for yourself, but “Adjustments” is one of the most effective ones.
Some people make you feel safe and secure, only to use what they know about you against you. It is difficult to stand up to someone like this, but you are not alone in this scenario. Smile Empty Soul reminds you that you do not need to deal with someone fake.
“You’ll See” by Madonna
Song year: 1995
Madonna’s pop song “You’ll See” considers a manipulative lover who thinks she is dependent on him. She proves that she will survive and live a wonderful life on her own.
If you need to get out of a relationship, this song might inspire you to make the right move.
“Forfeit” by Chevelle
Song year: 2002
When someone is trying to shake you, turn on “Forfeit” by Chevelle. This alternative metal song details someone deciding that they will not sit there and let someone talk over them.
“Forfeit” will inspire you to tell your enemy to shut up if they don’t have anything nice to say. It also encourages you to fight for what you believe in.
When you want to tell your bully to forfeit from their baseless fight against you, let Chevelle play and stand up for yourself!
“Permanent High School” by The Voidz
Song year: 2018
The experimental pop song “Permanent High School” is about standing up for yourself when you have changed and telling people the ugly truth, not just what they want to hear.
Whether you disagree with someone over politics, beliefs, careers, or lifestyles, you can find something to relate to in this song. It even covers how some people superficially care for you, and they need to deal with who you are, flaws and all.
“The First of Me” by Hoobastank
Song year: 2006
You do not need to sit there and let people compare you to others. The alternative rock song “The First of Me” by Hoobastank explores how you have no obligation to others to live your life how they want.
You do not have to pretend to be anyone else, and this song tells you that you can be whoever you want, as long as you are you.
“Love 2012” by 3OH!3
Song year: 2010
3OH!3’s electropop self-love anthem “Love 2012” may have an outdated title, but it is all about telling someone off for playing you. By declaring that you love yourself no matter what anyone else thinks, you gain power in your dynamic with your detractor.
“Cabron” by Red Hot Chili Peppers
Song year: 2002
“Cabron” roughly translates to “dumb-ass” in English. The alternative rock song talks about wanting to get along with someone who belittles you, but knowing that it’s probably not going to happen.
If you want to prove to your bully that you have more emotional strength than they believe, play “Cabron” and let it inspire you to tell someone off peacefully.
“Stronger” by Britney Spears
Song year: 2000
Whether you have a possessive partner or are in an abusive relationship, try listening to the upbeat pop song “Stronger” by Britney Spears. She declares that she isn’t afraid of being lonely because she now has the strength to stand on her own.
If you need a reminder that it’s better to be alone than with someone who hurts you, this song might help. It shows how we all have the strength within us and do not need to search for it externally.
“Covered in Cowardice” by Billy Talent
Song year: 2006
Billy Talent’s punk anthem “Covered in Cowardice” compares all bullies to cowards. They say cruel things to lift themselves as they do not like who they are.
If you keep this idea in mind, you can find the cause of their negative words and use it against them to stand up for yourself. Also, it might make you feel better when someone says mean things as you know it isn’t always personal.
“Suffocate” by Cold
Song year: 2003
Relationships can cause frustration, especially when your partner can’t take what they dish. If you have reached your limit, let “Suffocate” by alternative metal band Cold persuade you to tell them how you truly feel.
It’s easy to stay complicit and let your partner suffocate you in a relationship. However, you can stand up for yourself and reclaim your independence.
“hope is a dangerous thing for a woman like me to have – but i have it” by Lana Del Rey
Song year: 2019
People generally don’t stay the same for their entire lives. If you have changed in some way, people might expect you to behave as you used to and get mad at you for being different.
Lana Del Rey’s introspective alternative pop song considers how people spread rumors and criticized her for not being a prim and proper pop star. She declares that she’s not happy, perfect, and pretty all the time. However, she has hope for the future.
If you need to tell someone to give you space as you figure things out, this song might inspire you in some ways.
“Vision of Division” by The Strokes
Song year: 2006
One of the most aggressive garage rock songs by The Strokes is “Vision of Division.” This song discusses being in a troublesome relationship with someone who puts you through hell with no apologies.
This song describes the turning point of realizing that you need to stand up for yourself. During the verses, Julian Casablancas sings with two different characters: one who is begging the other to change to be happy and successful, and one who isn’t willing.
If you aren’t ready to stand up for yourself, listen to this song to convince yourself that you are worth something.
“Faint” by Linkin Park
Song year: 2003
Everyone feels insecure at times, but that does not mean someone should prey on your self-doubt.
The nu-metal song “Faint” by Linkin Park is one of the best songs about standing up for yourself. It explores how you can still feel down on yourself while holding your ground.
If you need to overcome some personal issues, you do not deserve to be ignored or looked down on. This song demands that you deserve to be helped and cared for, not put down over your hardships.
“Can’t Pin Me Down” by MARINA
Song year: 2015
Some people do not know who you are, and they do not care to learn. However, they still judge you. If you find yourself in this situation, you might relate to the pop song “Can’t Pin Me Down” by MARINA (then known as Marina and the Diamonds).
By telling her haters to back off and let her do her thing, Marina Diamandis declares her independence. Also, she shows that they are probably projecting their harsh feelings towards women in their lives on her.
“Letter from a Thief” by Chevelle
Song year: 2009
When the person making fun of you gets a little too personal, you might want to tell them to take a walk in your shoes and see how they like it.
Chevelle’s alternative metal song “Letter from a Thief” touches on this subject, with a side of insulting the person committed to bringing you down.
Top Songs About Standing Up for Yourself, Final Thoughts
Everyone gets put down sometimes. However, there’s always hope.
One of these songs might inspire you to stand up for yourself against a naysayer.
You do not need to put up with a bully. Try listening to these songs the next time someone insults you and see if it helps.