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Picture this.

You’re about to face one of the biggest moments of your life: you’ve got an interview for your dream job; you’re about to talk at an event in front of important decision makers, or maybe you’re about to get on a plane to live in a country you’ve never been to before!

The feeling is overwhelming, you take a deep breath, close your eyes and put your headphones in. You play that one song that you know will get you in the zone, feel focused and totally motivated.  

What song do you choose?!

Restless Development asked some of the inspirational young people we work with from around the world  to share their inspirational songs.

Here are their go-to tracks when they need some motivation. What’s yours?

Aisha: Youth Accountability Advocate from Tanzania

Hall of Fame” by The Script featuring WILL.I.AM. 

“I really like this song, it is the one song that makes me feel like I can do and achieve anything in this world. The song makes me feel powerful and invisible. It is my daily motivation. During my flight to New York for the United Nations General Assembly,  it was on replay, i listened to it all the way with a thought in my mind “the world is surely going to know my name.”

Anna Ashbury: Youth Reporter and International ICS Volunteer

Played-A-Live (The Bongo Song) by Safri Duo

“This song kind of runs in the family, my dad used to play it in the gym all of the time. When my mum and I did a cycle challenge in China, we blasted this song to help us get up the hills, or should I say mountains! I’d say it’s my go-to song for uplifting my mood. It’s definitely great for exercise.”

Jainish: Youth Accountability Advocate working for advocacy on gender equality including the transgender community.

“Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen

“Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen is my motivational song which I listen to almost everyday. This song is unpredictable and a fearless coming out story. You can easily get into the song wander with lyrics and probably make it your own story getting inspiration to work hard doesn’t matter what so ever it is, you give your best and keep on trying till the end.”

Pooja: Assistant Communications Coordinator at Restless Development India

‘Happy’ by Pharrell Williams

“I don’t really have a concrete reason why I would listen to a song like Happy! but I think when I am under pressure and need some motivation or just a little smile on my face the song just brings the beat and of course the most important thing ‘Happiness’. I can work through anything in life with a smile on my face, if I feel confident the world around me knows.”

“This song also it cuts out my fear, the fear of what if I mess up my words and what if I am thrown out of the room and what if I stumble and fall, this song gives me the confidence that whatever might happen it can’t really wipe the smile of my face. Some people need calmness before a meeting, and I sing Happy in my head repeatedly.”

Omang: Youth Accountability Advocate from India.

“Circle of Life” by Carmen Twillie, Lebo M.

“Circle of Life from the Lion King is my go to motivational song. Its sung by Carmen Twillie, Lebo M. I remember listening to it on my first trip to NYC, when I was confused with accents and addresses, lost in a new big city, estranged and petrified by the tall buildings many of which I had seen in movies and pictures. The song helped me rejoice the fact that I had been able to make it that far, especially since it came with hard work and not earning money. It helped me balance myself to say I had a larger mission to fulfill, without being arrogant about achievements and the circle of life would keep me at peace with everything.”

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