OK, I’ve been meaning to do this for a while now. While I always add some song lyrics to my weekly Business Rocks newsletter, I haven’t, to date, shared a full set of songs for the myriad of different issues faced by managers. Well, this is the first in a series of MixTapes that you can download from Spotify and listen to for inspiration, reflection and perspective.

This first MixTape is all about keeping your hope and optimism, even in difficult times. It’s about an hour long and I think it would be great to listen to on your commute back from a bad day at work! I’m sure that after an hour listening to these songs in your car or on the bus or train, you’ll feel a whole lot better when you finally get home.

Here’s the running order:

  1. Bad Day, Daniel Powter. The first thing to do is to recognise that the day might not have been perfect. As Daniel sings, “Sometime the system goes on the blink!”
  2. National Shite Day, Half Man Half Biscuit. Not strong enough for you? Don’t worry, let it all out by singing along with the ultimate miserables, Half Man Half Biscuit. Let’s face it, you may have had a bad day, but at least you didn’t have to listen to Primark FM! Altogether now, “This must be National…….”
  3. I’m Still Standing, Elton John. Once you’ve got all that negativity out of your system, you can start to recognise that you’re still alive and kicking by listening Elton John’s comeback song in more ways than one.
  4. Don’t Stop, Fleetwood Mac. From Rumours, Fleetwood Mac’s classic album, Don’t Stop will help you to start thinking about tomorrow and putting the misery of today behind you.
  5. Don’t Give Up, Peter Gabriel. Sometimes we all need a little reminder not to give up. When Peter Gabriel’s feeling down, he asks Kate Bush to sing some words of inspiration to him, and if Kate told me that I worried too much and that it was going to be alright, I’m sure I’d listen!
  6. Keep The Faith, Bon Jovi. While Peter is reflective, Jon urges you to keep going, believe in yourself and even though you know you’re going to live through the rain, you got to keep the faith!
  7. Three Little Birds, Bob Marley. When 3 little birds pass by your door step, surely you know that everything’s going to be alright!
  8. I Can See Clearly Now, The Hothouse Flowers. I know that the Johnny Nash original is the classic version, but I love the gospel sound in this song. By now you should have some perspective and optimism and, anyway, why can’t tomorrow be a sunshiny day?
  9. Hoppípolla, Sigur Ros. Although the band sing this song in their native Icelandic as well as some of their own made up langauge, you can’t escape the feeling of joy coming through. The song’s title means ‘puddle-jumping’ and it’s about a memory of being a child, jumping into puddles, falling down and getting a nosebleed, but then getting back up again. You didn’t mind getting a bloody nose when you were a kid, so why should you now?
  10. Don’t Stop Me Now, Queen. Even though the day might not have been perfect, you’re still a perfect person, so move on. As the first line in the song goes, “Tonight, I’m gonna have myself a real good time!”
  11. Beautiful Day, U2. Unlike Half Man Half Biscuit, the guys from U2 are a bit more upbeat and, anyway, every day is beautiful in some way, isn’t it?
  12. This Hard Land, Bruce Springsteen. One of my favourite Springsteen tracks, this song is able to combine an appreciation of how hard life can be with an optimistic, uplifting belief that it’s also going to be better.
  13. Better Things, The Kinks. A forgotten Kinks song, but one of Ray Davies’s finest and a rallying call for optimism and hope: “Here’s hoping that the days ahead/Won’t be as bitter as the ones behind you/Be an optimist instead/And somehow happiness will find you.”
  14. What A Wonderful World, Louis Armstong. I’m hoping that, by now, the difficulties of the day will have ebbed away and that you’re feeling bright, hopeful and determined. And, listening to Armstrong’s soothing voice, surely you think to yourself that it is, indeed, a wonderful world.

Do you agree with the list or are there other songs I should have included? Let me know if you have any additions or edits and I can always add them to the list.


© Stuart Cross 2020. All rights reserved.