1. Jailbirds — Cold War Kids
“The sun is rising so late, it’s early / I have spread myself too thin again”
You’ve just heard the news, and you can’t find any of the right words to explain how you feel. Day in and day out, you have been giving everything you’ve got just to have it all taken away in one phone call.
This one is for when the days and the nights all bleed into one and you just can’t seem to make sense of anything. You are overwhelmed and doing your best to hope for better days.
2. Sister Cities — The Wonder Years
“I feel weightless in the valley like I’m everywhere at once”
You’re still at a point where none of this feels real. You feel helpless and directionless, and you’re wishing someone would arrive with all the answers.
We all have our days when we feel abandoned. Maybe no one out there can solve every problem for us or give us all of the answers, but there is always someone out there willing to help you. Even when things seem like they could never get better, they can.
3. A New Way Home — Sleep On It
“And I’m looking out the window trying to find a splash of color in this grayscale life”
You’ve been struggling for a long time now, and maybe this will end up being exactly what you need to help you finally move forward.
Sometimes, the worst moments in our lives end up being exactly what we need to save us from ourselves. Just like they say in this song, “This life means more than you know / The time for quiet desperation is over.” This is your chance to change and finally become who you have always been too afraid to be.
4. Make It Happen — Kyle Fasel
“Without our failures, we are all boring”
Once you get to the point where it feels like everything you have built is falling down around you, you have two choices: let it destroy you or let it build you. As Kyle says in this spoken word piece, “This is it.” This is your moment to change your life and create the world you have always wanted.
We can count this moment of the walls caving in around us as a failure, or we can call it growth. If everything around us stayed the same forever, life would be pretty boring. Take this tragic moment and use it to motivate yourself to move forward. You owe yourself the life you have always dreamed of.
5. Far From Perfect (Ghost Note Symphonies) — Rise Against
“We are bruised / We are broken / But we are goddamn works of art”
You have been struggling to stay strong for so long. You have never wanted anyone to see just how fragile you really are, but there comes a point when the façade has to break. A small crack will eventually lead to the entire thing shattering. Even if you have shattered, you can still repair yourself.
None of us are perfect. None of us come without at least a little baggage, and this baggage is what makes us beautiful. Look at everything you have suffered through, only to make it out to the other side of your pain. Pick up your broken pieces and appreciate them for the beautiful mosaic you will now be able to create.
6. My Last Semester — The Wonder Years
“I’m not sad anymore, I’m just tired of this place”
As much as it pains you to admit it, you have been craving a change for quite a long time now. You know deep down that your current depressive state has a lot to do with where you are at right now in your life. Though your current situation has done you a lot of good, you know this change is probably the only way you will get out of the sadness you’ve been stuck in for years now.
Sometimes, we just have to admit to ourselves when a job, a person, or a place just isn’t working out. You owe it to yourself to be true to what it is that you are really looking for in this life, and you will never find it if you remain so stagnant. It is okay to admit that something that others enjoy just isn’t for you. This is your life, and you deserve to find your own place it.
7. I Can Get Back Up Now — You, Me, and Everyone We Know
“Was there something I said / To make you doubt that I could get back up / Cause I can get back up”
The moment we are faced with a sudden change, time seems to stand still. It can be like you are watching a car accident happen, but you can’t do anything to stop it or save anyone. You are just stuck there, waiting for the impact. Once it hits, however, the most important choice you have to make is to get back up. You can let the change defeat you or you can prove just how determined you are to build the life you have always wanted.
Not everyone in your life will be waiting with open arms to support you in the times that you need it most. This is why you need to learn to stand on your own two feet and support yourself. You can be your biggest enemy or your biggest supporter. I hope you choose to believe in yourself.
8. Smooth Seas Don’t Make Good Sailors — Neck Deep
“I’m just trying to find my purpose / I hope that it’s all worth it”
You have always been a perfectionist. You have always equated perfection with happiness. This is exactly why you are not happy. You will never be perfect because true perfection does not exist. You will realize that the world is full of both good and bad, and that it is up to you whether or not you see the glass as half empty or half full.
The fact that you are failing means that you are trying to find your purpose in this life. Without failure, there is no growth. Yes, the walls may be caving in, but just remember that there is so much more life to live outside of those walls.
9. Came Out Swinging — The Wonder Years
“I convinced myself that I’m brave enough for all of this”
The first step in getting better is to admit to yourself that you even have a problem in the first place. Getting yourself out of your current negative situation can seem so scary, but continuing down a road you aren’t happy on is what you should really be afraid of. It takes courage to make a major change in your life, but you are most certainly brave enough to do this.
Maybe you have to move back home or leave a toxic relationship in order to find your peace. Maybe you have to deviate from the path you so firmly planted yourself on to find the one that truly makes you happy. Maybe this pain is pushing you forward and finally allowing you to ignite your passion. You might be tired, you might be scared, but I promise you that this change is worth it.
10. Some Nights — fun.
“Man, you wouldn’t believe / The most amazing things / That can come from / Some terrible lies”
Even in your darkest moment, when you felt like the world was ending, it didn’t. You made it through the darkness to see another day. Yes, the walls might be caving in, and yes, you might have been betrayed, but that doesn’t mean that you will never find goodness in your life again. Some nights, nothing makes sense, and all you see is hurt. But then there will be those moments when life is so beautiful, you won’t even be able to believe it.
Life is a roller coaster, but I promise you that after each curve and sudden dip, you will always come back up. Your life will never be perfect, but you will find happiness again. You will find peace. You will be okay.
This is just another night, and in just a few hours, it will become another promising day and another opportunity to save yourself.
11. Pompeii — Bastille
“How am I gonna be an optimist about this?”
When the worst thing that you can possibly imagine happening actually happens, it might seem like you will never recover. You are watching everything around you fall apart, so how could you possibly keep yourself together? How could you see the positive side of a situation bursting at the seams with negativity? It won’t be easy. It might be one of the most difficult things you will ever have to do, but you have to get through it.
You have to close your eyes and remember the way life used to be before you lost it all. You had something before all of your life shattered to nothing. Please never forget the good times, even when the bad ones are screaming at your door. Maybe you don’t even know where to begin on your journey to getting better. It’s okay to feel nervous and uncertain, you just can’t let yourself make a home in your uncertainty. When the walls start falling down all around you, close your eyes and remember everything life is capable of giving you. Reassure yourself that your happiness is not a thing of the past. Take that first step forward, and the rest will follow.
12. Livin’ Th’ Dream — You, Me, and Everyone We Know
“You can’t afford to live like this / You can’t be dumb enough to dream so big”
It’s not easy to convince yourself that your dreams are worth fighting for when every day is just another struggle to keep your head above water. Sure, you could give up, and maybe things could become easier. Maybe you could live a simple, quiet life, and everything could be easier. Or you could do everything in your power to achieve your dreams, and even if you don’t succeed, at least you will always know that you tried.
We need to stop feeling stupid for following our dreams. If we weren’t mean to pursue our passions, then we wouldn’t have been made to feel them in the first place. Please don’t give up on all that you have wanted because you aren’t where you would like to be right now. The only guaranteed way that you will never achieve your dreams is by not trying to in the first place.
13. I’d Rather Be Sleeping — You, Me, and Everyone We Know
“Everything I’ve ever wanted is just as possible as growing up and feeling haunted by the missteps that I’ve had”
Things just haven’t been going your way lately. It’s like every time you take one step forward, you take 10 steps back. Some days, you could really just use a break.
You can take a break from the hustle and bustle of life, but promise me that you won’t let all of the pressure break you. We can all dream up our ideal life, but most of us get stuck feeling like it can only be a dream. Your dreams can be your reality, but only if you let them. You can either focus on everything that has gone wrong, or you can think of all of the things that have and will go right. Just because life isn’t a dream right now doesn’t mean it won’t be tomorrow.
14. Take a Hint — Real Friends
“After years of searching, it’s almost working out / If you don’t like the format you set the music to / You can change the rhythm you choose to feel it through”
Maybe everything you once had is crashing down around you. Maybe you have been working for years towards something just to have it taken from you the moment you finally thought it was yours.
It can be so difficult to admit when something just isn’t working out. However, staying somewhere not meant for you can and will become even more difficult over time. You are in control of your own life, and therefore, you are the one who decides your trajectory. If you aren’t happy with where you are at currently, you need to take action. You owe it to yourself to create the life you have always wanted.
If it doesn’t feel right, find the thing that does.
15. Survivor — Destiny’s Child
“After all of the darkness and sadness soon comes happiness / If I surround myself with positive things / I’ll gain prosperity”
You got this. Whatever it is that you are facing, you will come out on the other side of this darkness. Think of all of the other times you thought you wouldn’t make it through the pain. You always have, and you always will as long as you don’t give up hope.
Change is scary, but so is living a life that doesn’t fulfill you. You will find happiness again. You will love yourself. You will make it through these bad times, and you will be so much stronger because of all you have been through.
You are extraordinary. You can do anything.