There are times in life when even the best shade of lipstick, the perfect glass of wine or a meet-up with your best gal pals isn’t enough to motivate you towards greatness. When your inner boss lady seems a little lost and worn down, there’s only one thing to do — turn towards some of the biggest badasses in music and let them guide you. This playlist will leave you either ready to conquer the boardroom or just get out of bed on the weekend. Tak no survivors. Dance your ass off.
Related-ish: Badass Women Who Got A Late Start In Their Careers
1. Destiny’s Child – “Independent Women, Pt. 1”
When you’re grinding away at that 9 to 5 wishing your boss would back off or a coworker would leave you alone, just remember that you’re an “Independent Women”. You’re paying your own bills, showing off your hard-earned bling and don’t need a man to depend on. Throw your hands up along with these ladies and celebrate your fierce independence.
2. M.I.A. – “Bad Girls”
There’s no need to be prim and proper in your rise to the top. Smash the glass celling in your favorite stilettos or boots, and embrace the motto of “Bad Girls” to “live fast, die young.” Boss ladies don’t need to be meek to get what they want. As M.I.A. shows you, it’s alright to show a little of your wild side and go full throttle towards getting what you desire.
3. Donna Summer – “She Works Hard For The Money”
Boss ladies don’t take breaks. You’re working hard, sending e-mails, juggling multiple internships, taking care of a family and still making time to unwind. Don’t let life pass you by without reminding yourself how hard you work, and how much you deserve. Work hard, but take care of yourself too and surround yourself with fellow boss ladies who will dance alongside you in the street.
4. Cyndi Lauper – “Girls Just Want To Have Fun”
Don’t shy away from the woman you were born to be, even if the office dress code mandates khakis. Even boss ladies have to be serious sometimes, but it’s okay to let loose and have some fun. Step away from the cubicle and onto the dance floor with this upbeat anthem that will make you boss lady of the dance floor or encourage you towards whatever you dream of.
5. Chastity Belt – “Drone”
Unfortunately, even boss ladies aren’t immune from mansplaining. Just because you know what you want and you’re not afraid to get it doesn’t mean the rest of the world will understand. Chastity Belt’s “Drone” is there to encourage you in those times and stomp down on the naysayers in your toughest pair of combat boots.
6. Katy Perry – “Firework”
In order to be a boss lady you have to be willing to shine. Let your talents sparkle in your personal and professional endeavors with Katy Perry’s “Firework”. Go after everything you want and blast off towards success like a brightly colored “Firework”. Don’t be afraid to show off or brag, even just a little.
7. The Julie Ruin – “I Decide”
Being the boss means making the tough decisions and not being afraid to well, get a little bossy. It’s okay to speak up and speak out. Use your voice and if you’re still asking for what you want at a whisper, The Julie Ruin is here to help with “I Decide”.
8. Charli XCX – “Break The Rules”
It’s okay to be a little edgy. Even boss ladies have to let down their hair and explore their wild side. Whether you’re heading off to the discotheque like Charli XCX and her gal pals or planning a day of playing hookie, “Break The Rules” will shake you out of your routine.
9. The Coathangers – “Down Down”
You deserve just as much credit as your male counterparts and “Down Down” is all about pushing aside the conception that gender should have any bearing in our success. When you find yourself feeling blue that you haven’t yet conquered the world, this song is a good reminder that anything is possible.
10. No Doubt – Just A Girl
Gwen Stefani of No Doubt is a boss lady in her own right, fronting the band, starting a family, overseeing a clothing line and doing it all. In 2003, she encouraged her fellow females with “Just A Girl” a fast-paced, bite back at those who doubt you because you’re a girl. Don’t apologize for being a girl, instead scream your lungs out with Stefani.
11. Eurythmics – Sisters Are Doin’ It For Themselves
Feel liberated as a boss lady and be proud of your accomplishments with Eurythmics’ “Sisters Are Doin’ It For Themselves”. It’s okay to admit when you may need help or you can totally go it our own and turn to your fellow sisters for inspiration.
12. Aretha Franklin – Respect
Demand R.E.S.P.E.C.T. from the people around you. Don’t let others tear you down or treat your poorly. It doesn’t matter if you’re out with friends or in an office meeting, boss ladies deserve to be treated with kindness and those that won’t treat you with respect don’t deserve to be part of your boss lady inner circle.
13. Nelly Furtado – “Maneater”
Demand attention when you walk in the door and let Nelly Furtado’s “Maneater” help you steal the spotlight. Don’t shy away from being the center of attention or from finding a boo who will give you everything your boss lady heart desires.
14. Marina And The Diamonds – “How To Be A Heartbreaker”
A few hearts are bound to be broken in our boss lady quest for glory and that’s perfectly alright. In order to find your prince or princess you have to date a few frogs. Marina and the Diamonds shows you with sass and sparkle, that any boss lady can find the man or woman of your dreams.
15. Beyoncé – “Run the World (Girls)”
Beyoncé is the great boss lady of the world, inspiring women on the daily with her tireless work ethic and self-respect. She emulates all that aspiring boss ladies can hope to be and when you feel like the fight to rule the world is a little too tough, just blast “Run the World (Girls)” as loud as possible and remind yourself that no matter what, you rule the world.