Branding Beat - Cut Through the Noise

7 Motivational Tips from Pop-Punk Bands

Crowded venues. Sweaty, screaming teenagers and twenty-somethings. Loud music. Angsty lyrics. According to, pop-punk “is a post-grunge strand of alternative rock that combines power-pop melodies and chord changes with speedy punk tempos and loud guitars.”

If you’ve been wondering, “But Jenna, what can I possibly learn about business from pop-punk?”, then allow me to explain. Sure, the lyrics contain a lot of whining about not fitting in and girlfriends leaving, but sprinkled within all of that teen angst are some valuable life and business lessons. Don’t believe me? Take a look at the following lyrics:

Four Year Strong

Four Year Strong

“Don’t fix it if it hasn’t broken yet./Don’t regret it if it hasn’t happened yet.” – Four Year Strong

Ah, yes. Truer words have never been spoken. (Okay, maybe they have, but this is still good advice for any company or employee.) I understand that worrying about the future of sales and business is pretty much the number one priority for any company, but sometimes it is best to not tamper with what is already a good thing. Take Krispy Kreme for example – they got a little bit ahead of themselves and spread themselves too thin, and we all know what happened from there. (If you don’t, I’ll give you a hint: it starts with “downward,” and ends with “spiral.”)

“We hold heads high while bullets fly.” – Man Overboard

Man Overboard

Man Overboard

When all of the crap hits the fan, you can’t crumble under the pressure. Any CEO, manager, or employee has to roll with the punches every day. You can’t let one thing throw you off from being productive all day. Instead, pick yourself up by the bootstraps and take each task one step at a time.

“I often wonder if I’ll ever finish all I’ve started, and the answer I have found is NO./No, I will never finish all that I have started because life is about doing, the process/And not the result. Life is about doing whether you want to or not.” – Set Your Goals

It is important to celebrate the small victories of each day. Because let’s face it, that to-do list isn’t getting any shorter. For each item that you cross off, two or three more things get added. Live in the moment. Whether you want to get those projects done or not, you have to. So you might as well embrace the process and start tackling things with a positive attitude little by little.

“Why don’t you get it together now?/Failure’s not flattering.” – New Found Glory

This one pretty much speaks for itself. Have you been slugging on that latest project? Crashing into unproductivity mode by the time 2 o’clock rolls around? Struggling to get motivated? Take this as the swift kick in the butt you need to get yourself in gear.

New Found Glory

New Found Glory

“No matter how happy you are, you’ll always want more.” – New Found Glory

Everyone can use a reminder once in a while to take a moment to stop and smell the roses. Whether you are a manager or an employee, take some time to be thankful for the things that you have accomplished instead of constantly demanding more of yourself and the people around you.

“Stevie said that if I woke up feeling hopeless/That I should think about it different/That I had it all wrong/It’s not the end if you call it a new beginning.” – The Wonder Years

If the work week has been getting you down, maybe it’s high time that you change your perspective on things. Instead of focusing your energy on negative thoughts, think about all of the things that have gone right this week. Take a look at all of the things that you have accomplished this week.

The Wonder Years

The Wonder Years

“So if you’re thinking you just got the best of me/Man, we don’t go down that easy.” – The Wonder Years

Anyone involved in any aspect of business must be resilient. When your overwhelming workload, the fierce business competition, or unexpected curveballs thrown at your company are getting you down, the best (and only) thing you can do is channel your frustration into something productive. Prove everything (and everyone) that’s going against you wrong.

Even if pop-punk’s not your thing, keep these lyrics in mind the next time you’re feeling bogged down with work.

What do you think? Which of these tips will help motivate you? If these songs aren’t your style, which other songs motivate you throughout the week?

Image credit to iskanderbenamor, Natalia Balcerska Photography, Jayson Ignacio, Taylor Linse, and YODCOX!


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  1. Mandy Kilinskis

    I think that a lot of brands (and individuals) need to heed the advice of Four Year Strong. There’s a serious difference between innovation/following trends and the Krispy Kreme fail.

    But there are all great lyrics and definitely ones to remember (or listen to!) if we’re having a less-than-stellar day. Great post, Jenna!

    • Jenna Markowski

      I totally agree, Mandy!

      Thanks! I hope they help! 🙂

  2. Rachel

    Great post, Jenna! I think my favorite is the New Found Glory quote, “No matter how happy you are, you’ll always want more.” Sometimes I do get stuck in that mindset of always looking ahead at the things that I want or feel I need, instead of seeing what’s in front of me and appreciating what I already have accomplished. Of course, it’s still important to look ahead and set goals, but it’s easy to forget to, as you say, stop and smell the roses once in a while. 🙂

    There’s a great lyric in the Phoenix song “Consolation Prizes” that also motivates me: “Did you get older doing nothing today?” It always reminds me to try to accomplish at least something every day so that I can look back and know that the day was not wasted. Granted, I don’t always succeed! But it’s definitely a motivational lyric for me. 🙂

    • Jill Tooley

      I love, love, LOVE Phoenix! Nice reference/addition! 😀

    • Jenna Markowski

      I’m glad you liked that one, Rachel! It’s definitely a good thing to keep in mind.

      I’ve never listened to Phoenix before, but that’s a great addition to this list! That would definitely motivate me to get in gear. 🙂

  3. Jen

    Jenna, I love how you compared pop punk lyrics to daily situations in a work place. This is a really creative post, great job!

  4. Jill Tooley

    I love the quotes you’ve chosen, Jenna! I don’t listen to any of those bands, but the lyrics in this post sound like they’d motivate me for sure. And the upbeat tempo wouldn’t hurt, either! 😉

    Awesome post, very creative!!

  5. Sarah Riddle

    I love this and I am sharing it on my social media sites for sure!

    • Jill Tooley

      Thanks for the share, Sarah! Glad to have another pop-punk fan in our midst! 🙂

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