Kids, let me tell you what I learned from watching “How I Met Your Mother”

Photo by Karine Yumi

Photo by Karine Yumi

March 31, 2014 marked the end of an era. The CBS comedy, “How I Met Your Mother” aired its final episode. Fans, like me, grew close to Ted Mosby (Josh Radnor), Lily Aldrin-Eriksen (Alyson Hannigan), Marshall Eriksen (Jason Segal), Barney Stinson (Neil Patrick Harris) and Robin Scherbatsky (Cobie Smulders) for nine years. We’ve seen these characters go through marriages, fall in and out of love, interventions, death and moments that were, as Barney would say, legendary. From those nine wonderful seasons, “How I Met Your Mother” has instilled life lessons that I hold near and dear to my heart.

1. Three deep breaths

There are days that feel like the world is out to get you. It could be a domino effect of unfortunate events or something grave happened. We panic and feel angry or frightened. As Tracy McConnell (aka The Mother) puts it, we need to pause, close our eyes and take three deep breaths. Three deep breaths can change everything. Those three breaths work and you’ll feel better than before.

2. Nothing good happens after 2 a.m.

Ted Mosby’s philosophy that nothing good happens after 2 a.m. is true. If you’re not wrapped under the covers in your warm, cozy bed by 1:59 a.m., there’s trouble brewing.

3. You can’t run back to the past. That is a mistake.

There is a reason for leaving things behind. The past can hurt, but you must move on and learn from it. You can’t just run to the past just because of familiarity, and it’s tempting to go back, but it’s a mistake. Dust yourself off and carry on.

4. Nothing is legendary, unless your friends are there to witness.

Ah, the classic Barney Stinson motto. There are stories and there are stories of epic proportions. Whether it be zip lining on campus, nights out, the beer tap at the bar broke and there was free beer for everyone or pineapple. Those legendary stories are the fondest of memories that will last a lifetime because of the people you shared it with, your friends.

5. You’ll discover how easy it is to part ways with someone in life, forever.

We meet a lot of people in our lives. That’s why, when you find someone that you want to keep around, do something to keep that person in your life. It’s amazing how sometimes your best friend from grade school, your drinking buddy, your neighbor and the kid you met in college, could all just disappear when you part ways with them. The sad part is that you don’t even realize that you’ve let that person go until you look back.

6. “If you’re not scared, then you’re not taking a chance. If you’re not taking chances, then what the hell are you waiting for?”

Ted could not have said it any better. We want to apply for that dream job we’ve had since we were 16 or we want to ask that guy or girl out, but this feeling of doubt engulfs us. Maybe that manager will give you an answer. Maybe that guy or girl will say yes. You never know unless you take the leap. Being afraid is natural when taking risks, so take the chance. It’s better than wondering “What if?”

7. Sometimes our friends know us better than we know ourselves.

Kids, remember the episode when Ted dated his snobby ex-girlfriend from college, Karen (played by Laura Prepon)? Lily and Marshall warned Ted about her pretentiousness while Ted was blinded by love and the Porch Test came to use. Keep your good friends close, because all they really want is what’s best for you. Even if you see it or don’t see it.

8. Love is nonsensical.

Love is like a complex machine. It doesn’t make sense and there is no logic to it. It may take time for you to find “the one.” You could end up falling for your best friend, even though now you think there would be no chance, but love works in mysterious ways, as cliché as that sounds. The important thing is to keep love alive or else you’re lost. That’s what people do. Love.

9. You’re not looking for someone who accepts your quirks. You’re looking for someone who cherishes them.

We’ve all got our little quirks. It could be our pair of red cowboy boots that we think we are totally pulling off, nerding out over art, a pursuit to get a funk band started, saying, “but, um” during interviews, or believing that a simple game of laser tag can solve anything. Accepting and cherishing the “but, um’s,” the way we geek out over “Star Wars,” how a person dresses, or the way a person laughs is all we really need. It could be your best friend or the person you end up marrying, we love these quirks unconditionally.

10. The universe.

The mistake most people make is getting themselves worked up over something. Ted finally let go of Robin which led him to meeting, Tracy, the mother of his children at the Farhampton train stop in the pouring rain after Barney and Robin’s wedding. Take a step back, don’t worry and let the universe work its magic. The universe is a mysterious and wonderful thing. I am a firm believer in the universe and “How I Met Your Mother” has made me trust this philosophy more. If you are destined to do something, then you will do it. If the signs are all there pointing you in the right direction, follow them. Some of life’s greatest moments are the things that happen to you. You do have to take some action to affect the outcome, but always remember that at any moment, your life can change once you open the door. The universe has a plan that’s always in motion, making sure you’ll end up exactly where you’re supposed to be, when you’re supposed to be there and at the right time.

And that kids, is what I learned from watching “How I Met Your Mother.” After watching the finale episode that put me in a glass case of emotions, twice, I’ve finally come to terms that this show ended. Thank you to the actors who played these characters and made them loveable. To Carter Bays and Craig Thomas, I request the highest of fives for making such a legend – wait for it – dary show.

Nathalie Sczublewski can be reached at [email protected]

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