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The Best Inspirational Movies for When Your Motivation Lags

We all hit road blocks in our lives where we lose all motivation. When this feeling strikes, pick yourself back up with these inspirational movies.

Inspirational Movies

Everyone knows what it feels like to be completely drained of motivation. You lost the energy to do anything and nothing sounds like it’s worth your time anyway! Except popping in a movie and getting comfy on the couch.

So why not kill two birds with one stone? Watch an amazingly inspirational movie making you want to get off your butt and do something with your life!

Reclaiming inspiration

My motivation seems to be bipolar. Yes, that’s right. I have days – or weeks – where I feel like I can do anything, including finding the cure for cancer. Then other times where I feel like a useless waste of human space. [Read: How to motivate yourself to do pretty much anything]

There really is no in-between. Well, there wasn’t, at least. Not until I decided to start using my laziness AS my motivation! Since all I ever really wanted to do included laying down and watching a movie, I started selecting my movies the smart way.

Movies for motivation!

Whenever I’m feeling uninspired, I simply watch one of these movies, and by the inspirational end, my motivation returns completely! So take it from someone who uses inspirational movies, and watch any one of them in order to kick your motivation back into full gear. [Read: 19 life quotes to motivate you to live a better life]

#1 Forrest Gump. Who doesn’t love this classic movie about a slow-witted young man rising against adversity and lives not only a normal life, but an incredibly inspirational one? After seeing it, you’ll want to do anything but sit and watch another movie.

#2 Remember the Titans. My all-time favorite movie focuses on a time where integration in the school systems remained new and unwanted, and football was more important than Christmas. Integrating an all-black school with an all-white school meant big changes for the football team. And people were not happy.

#3 Blind Side. This inspirational movie, based on a true story, made big strides in recognizing the missing talent in the game of football. When a homeless high schooler is taken in by a generous and wealthy family, his entire life changes for the better. [Read: Ready for some tears? 20 movies that will make you cry]

#4 Rush. Another movie based on a true story, the 1970s story of James Hunt and Niki Lauda. Two Formula racers with a rivalry putting any other to shame. Risking death with each race, they’re faced with remaining mentally tough while the women in their lives sit in fear with each rotation of their tires.

#5 Life of Pi. This inspirational movie focuses on a young man’s journey after his ship from India to Canada wrecks. As a lone survivor, he battles the waves, ocean life, and starvation. All on a single life boat with the company of a hungry Bengal tiger.

#6 Freedom Writers. Racism, gangs, violence, and a true story all wrapped into one. This motivational piece follows a white high school English teacher as she voluntarily dives into the midst of an underperforming class of degenerates with a gang problem. She helps them face their own problems and excel in school and life. All with just giving them a journal to write in. [Read: 11 simple ways to inspire the people around you]

#7 127 Hours. He thought his exploration of a remote canyon in Utah would be a good idea. Little did Aron Ralston know he’d become entrapped in its grasp beneath a big boulder for 127 hours with no way out other than to amputate his own arm. All while contemplating his seemingly inevitable death.

#8 Million Dollar Baby. She wanted to take charge. She wanted to be tough. Maggie Fitzgerald managed to squeeze her way into Frankie Dunn’s, a Los Angeles veteran boxing trainer, usually not accepting world. Her life would change forever.

#9 Gravity. One woman. Trapped in space with barely enough willpower to attempt to make it home. It’s a long way back for someone who’s floating just above the earth. After seeing this, you’ll feel far less accomplished and will want to get up and do something about it.

#10 The Shawshank Redemption. Being accused of murders you didn’t commit isn’t easy to accept. Living life in a tough, brutal prison doesn’t exactly help. Andy Defresne befriends fellow inmate, Red. He adapts to his new, cruel life, and even helps out the warden. If you haven’t seen this classic, it is a must on a list of inspirational movies.

#11 The Pursuit of Happyness. Evicted from his apartment and alone with his young son, it seems all hope is lost for Chris Gardner. That is, until a moment with a stranger lands him an unpaid internship at a brokerage firm.

Although he has no money and no home, Chris is in the pursuit of a better life for his family and never gives up. [Read: 12 steps to change your life and find your happiness]

#12 Little Giants. Who doesn’t love an old family rivalry? And who doesn’t love a bunch of little kids playing football?

This inspirational movie follows two brothers who have always been at odds. One brother has always been better at everything than the other brother. They use their football teams as a means to end the rivalry once and for all.

#13 The Help. 1960s Mississippi wasn’t a place for an outspoken young woman. When Skeeter returns from college, she knows she’s supposed to get married, have kids, be a good wife. But that doesn’t mean she will.

With her big dreams of becoming a writer taking hold, she decides to start interviewing the black housekeepers who take care of prominent white families for years. Turns out what they have to say doesn’t really want to be heard.

#14 Morning Glory. She’s young, she’s motivated, and she’s ready to take on her new position as the producer of a national morning-news program. Becky Fuller wants to revitalize the low-rated show by bringing in a new host. If only she knew he wouldn’t exactly be up for her ideas. This movie will leave you feeling happy, good, and ready to take on the world, just like Becky. [Read: 10 tried and tested ways to become a better leader at work]

#15 Good Will Hunting. With a genius-level IQ, you’d think Will Hunting would be anything but a janitor at MIT. After Will’s incredible math talents are discovered by an unsuspecting professor, Gerald Lambeau, he finds himself thrust into a world of finding his true potential.

This is definitely an inspirational movie for those feeling lost or not sure what to do next in life.

#16 Unbroken. Troubled youth, turned Olympic athlete, Louis (Louie) Zamperini made a great life for himself. But when the war breaks out he decides to take it one more step and enlists in the military.

But after his place crashes over the Pacific, he’s forced to survive adrift in a small raft. He never imagined those 47 days would be the easiest on his journey to surviving.

#17 Pay It Forward. One social studies teacher never imagined his assignment of making the world a better place would cause one student to change the world. When he decides he wants to change the world for the better by “paying it forward,” he not only changes the life of a young, struggling mother, but turns it into a national phenomenon. [Read: 17 ways to be a citizen of the world while living at home]

#18 42. Branch Rickey forever changed the game of baseball in 1946. He became the first manager to sign the first non-white player major league had ever seen – Jackie Robinson. Together they faced adversity, public scrutiny, and a changed life.

#19 Southpaw. When tragedy strikes, Billy “The Great” Hope, the reigning junior middleweight boxing champion, hits rock bottom. With his future on the line, he puts his hope and trust into one Tick Willis. Hoping he can turn his life around for himself and his family.

#20 Soul Surfer.  Bethany Hamilton is a natural surfer with a knack for snagging the sickest waves. But when her hope, future, and arm gets ripped away by the jaws of one hungry shark, she faces great difficulties in her everyday life, especially if she ever wants to get back on a surfboard.

[Read: How to take that first step towards success – Everything you need to know]

These inspirational movies all create something special, making you see yourself and the world differently. Whenever you’re feeling stuck in a rut, pop one of these in, sit back, and let your motivation return to you.

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Bella Pope LovePanky
Annabel Rodgers
Annabel is a lifestyle writer, cheese enthusiast (Wisconsin native over here) and fantasy adventure author-in-progress who enjoys all things love, dog,...