Music Monday · Nostalgia

5 Songs That Helped Make Me the Woman I Am Today | Megan Smidt


We all have those songs. You know the ones: They’re the songs of our past, the ones that we discovered or listened to during pivotal times in our lives—the so-called turning points—that became so much a part of us that their words somehow became our own. They are the ones that played a part in shaping us into who we are today. They are the ones that we hear now that immediately transport us back to those days where we were evolving, where we were becoming, where we were discovering the parts of ourselves that just couldn’t wait to come alive. (Fun fact: Closer to Fine is one of mine.)

Our friend Megan Smidt knows all about this phenomenon, and she’s with us here today at The Nostalgia Diaries sharing her own Music Monday playlist, 5 Songs That Helped Make Me the Woman I Am Today.

Give them a listen and then let us know: What are some of the songs that helped shape you into who you are today?

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5 Songs That Helped Make Me the Woman I Am Today | Megan Smidt

Being a life coach, a huge part of what I do is help my clients really get to the root of, and 100% lean into and own, who they are as a person and who they were created to be in order to impact their own life and the world around them how they were specifically created to impact it all.

And I need to tell you something right now, before we get to know each other any further…

I love music… Like, r e a l l y love music.

A lot.

I grew up in Southern California (born in 1975) and I was 8 years old when, at a family friend’s house, I was introduced to MTV and was g l u e d to it watching music videos, listening to the music and being infatuated with the fashion from the likes of Cyndi Lauper, Prince, Duran Duran, Culture Club and Madonna.

I remember specifically being in 4th grade and staying up all night long listening to my favorite songs on the radio and making up dances to Madonna songs with my friends at recess at school. Around that same time was when I heard the Australian band INXS for the first time and they completely stole my heart, becoming my favorite band of all time.

But what I really want to share with you today is all about my high school and young adult years when very specific artists’ music, videos and fashion completely spoke to my heart and greatly impacted my life, shaping me into the woman I am today…

1) Legal Tender – The B-52’s (1983)

The B-52’s saw the height of their popularity at the end of the 80’s when their song “Love Shack” was released…. but I had already been a fan of theirs for many years. I loved their music for sure, but when I first saw Kate and Cindy’s style, I had to have every single album. They were so original and completely owned who they were…. Mashing up campy fun with serious musical talent and a whole lot of outrageous retro style. I loved it then and still love it now, decades later.

2) I Walk The Earth – Voice of the Beehive (1988)

I will never forget the first time I saw this music video. Every single day of my high school life, I would rush home from school in time to watch Request Video on a local cable network. It was hosted by a KROQ radio DJ, The Poorman, where he would show “alternative” videos and interview the music artists when they were in town. You could call in to requests the videos you wanted to see and it literally was the highlight of my every day to sing-a- long and get to know the bands I loved even better.

Voice of the Beehive are two sisters from Southern California who moved to England and their music took off from there. Their drummer Woody was in the popular band Madness (remember “Our House”?) and the first time I heard one of their songs on the radio I was instantly in love. THEN I saw this video and became OBSESSED. Tracey and Melissa Belland…. Their style, their sound, their lyrics… the angsty teen in me was all about it and it made my lifetime to see them live when I was 16 and got the meet the band after the show. Their song lyrics were all about loving who you authentically are, being strong (but feminine) and not changing who you are for anyone, especially for a man.

Much like today, when I was a teen I would literally wear every color at the same time, so the Belland sisters’ fun fashion sense helped me to be more confident in my own original style and embrace who I was at my core because THAT is what the world needed from me. I even had one of their favorite designers, Peach Berserk, make me a few dresses and got her re-connected with Tracey and Melissa years later… So fun! The Beehive girls taught me that life principle as a teen… and for that I am forever grateful.

3) It Won’t Be Long – Alison Moyet (1991)

I loved Alison Moyet when she was in Yaz in the early 80s…. but when I first heard her solo album Hoodoo as a teen, she became much more of a musical she-ro to me. I always loved her sultry, powerful voice, but I had never seen what she looked like before this video. I now saw this gorgeous, larger woman who looked like she felt so comfortable in her own skin and confident with her ridiculously amazing voice and I had to hear more. I had always been a “bigger” girl and for the first time, I felt like I was seeing a woman who showed me how powerful looking different than most pop music idols could be. She made me feel more confident in owning my body and owning my powerful voice. I finally get to see her live next month for the first time and I cannot wait!

4) Human Behavior – Bjork (1993)

First of all, I first fell in love with Bjork when she was in the Sugarcubes….. but I feel like she and I both came into our own together with her early solo releases. In my early 20s I was a vocalist in several electronic bands throughout southern California and even published my own music magazine for a while. You could say I was kind of big in a very small music scene. As an artist, I was immediately drawn to Bjork’s super funky style and crazy unique vocals. To this day, I can’t think of an artist that even comes close to her originality… and talk about owning your quirkiness! HA! So many people don’t get her, and I understand that, but for me…. She was freedom. She embodies knowing that no matter how off-beat or “weird” I feel like I am, there are always going to be people out there who “get me” who need to see me fully “me” in order to own their own selves. Thanks, Bjork!

5) Hummingbirds – Venus Hum (2001)

I was first introduced to this Nashville-based band in my late 20s after my life had radically changed almost overnight when my then boyfriend Craig (now husband) and I got full custody of his five kids from his first marriage. Craig and I were in a band together, had our own record label and even had our own online electronic music magazine together (this was before MySpace and Facebook.) I fell in love with Venus Hum’s sound from first listen and then fell even more in love with Annette’s style and flair. I had the pleasure of meeting them and interviewing them before a show at the Viper Room in LA in the early 2000s (before they hit the big-time touring with the Blue Man Group) where I was able to ask Annette about her unique experience being a women in the heavily male-dominated electronic music scene. I learned that night about her strong spiritual faith and how even when her band- mates made fun of her for it, she owned it let it move through her body, soul and incredible voice without hitting anyone over the head with it. Total inspiration.

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When I think back at how I became the woman I am today, so much of it comes down to what I learned from these powerful music artists. At those pivotal times in my life, these women helped me put words and actions to my thoughts and feelings and gave me the confidence I was searching for to own who I knew I uniquely was at my core and not be afraid of what anyone else might think. They made me bold and secure in giving me the courage to know that there were other women out there that needed me to completely own who I am so that I could help them own their own authentic self.

And to me, that is so beautiful.

For the past six years I have been helping women live their very best, authentically intentional lives as a certified life coach and so much of that I owe to these artists. I hope you enjoyed this musical journey with me today and if any of it spoke to your heart, I’d love to hear more about it in a comment below!

Your Coach Meg red jacketMegan Smidt, Certified Life Coach

Megan Smidt is a confetti-throwing life balance coach, mother, sister, devoted friend and love-spreader. She is super passionate about helping driven and compassionate women create balanced, joy-filled, intentional lives that they love (and that love them back). She spends her days loving on her two deaf Great Danes and encouraging women all over the world to be their very best. Coach Meg lives in Peoria, AZ with her husband, one of her five adult kids and 3 silly dogs.

Connect with Meg on her website, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Want to submit your own song or playlist to be featured on a Music Monday post? Email us today! We can’t wait to hear your own nostalgia-inducing tunes.


At The Nostalgia Diaries, our goal is to help you simplify, enhance, and engage your lives by focusing on the most important things: remembering, appreciating, believing, and becoming. It’s all about celebrating the past to create better days today.


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21 thoughts on “5 Songs That Helped Make Me the Woman I Am Today | Megan Smidt

  1. What an amazing post! It really makes you think back. I was a massive Bjork fan and also loved Alison Moyet. I grew up in a very small town and I remember when we got cable! I would rush home at lunch and after school and be glued to both The Flintstones (who doesn’t love Wilma?!) and Much Music (Canada’s music TV station). I just loved watching all those colourful videos 🙂

  2. I haven’t heard some of these before, so awesome! I definitely associate different songs with various turning points in life. Music really does play a huge role in life. I can hear the opening to a song and be instantly transported to where I was when it was on the radio. I miss music videos!

  3. I love this post! (And this blog!)

    There are so many songs that allowed me to say the things I couldn’t put into words. This is a great list 🙂

  4. This was so fun to read! Music is so important to me as well. My husband and I actually picked a song for each child – one that exemplified their personality and reminded us of them. It was so fun to choose!

  5. Great post. I love teaming music up with words. You’ve taken us on your journey through music. I actually only knew one or two of these songs. It’s because I’m ‘a little’ older 😉 For me, Tracy Chapman, Sarah McLauchlan, Liz Phair, Blondie, Joan Jett…these ladies took me into my 20s and 30s.

  6. Music is so powerful. I’ve been conducting a show choir for the last six years and its to the point where I can’t listen to the radio without hearing a song we’ve done and all the memories that go with it. Thanks so much for sharing your list.

    1. I was in show choir all 4 years of high school during much of this time… what wonderful memories!

  7. This is a great post & so true! I definitely have my repertoire of songs that have shaped me! I love hearing the music people listen to, I think it speaks so much to who they are – though I admit I have never heard any of these!!! haha

  8. I love how these songs have meant so much to you. My pick right now will sound weird (actually, strange!) but it’s true: “People Are Strange,” by The Doors. I’ve always felt like a misfit, and when I discovered this song, when I was a boy, it kind of … validated me in a way? It made it feel like I wasn’t the only one.

    I dare say as a teenager, I started to wear it as a badge.

    Beautiful work here. Glad you wrote this for this blog!

  9. Though I do not know any of these songs, I have so many that have made me the woman I am today. Music always gets me through life.

  10. There are definitely songs in my life that have shaped me into the woman I am today, and ones that take me back to a particular feeling and a certain moment. I will have to listen to these ones!

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