For nine seasons, CBS’ hit sitcom “How I Met Your Mother” followed the stories of a quirky group of friends from New York City as they navigated friendship, relationships and personal lives.
And though some die-hard fans thought the show had one of the most controversial series finales of all time, new generations of viewers continue to fall in love with Lily and Marshall and others still stake their claim in the Ted/Robin/Barney love triangle.
And as usual, fans started to study the endless wisdom about ‘’love’’ that viewers can take from the show. And as expected, they delivered. Here are 5 relationship lessons you can learn from the hit series ‘’How I Met Your Mother’’. (Spoiler alert!)
1. Conflict in a relationship is not necessarily ‘’a bad thing’’—not unless couples can find a way to tackle it together.
In season five, episode six, Barney and Robin appeared to have discovered a relationship Utopia. They revealed to their friends that they had never had a fight during the course of their romantic relationship. So what was their secret? Either Barney left before a conflict escalated or Robin distracted him with an intimate session. Their “perfect relationship” was eventually put to the test during a trip when they got stuck on a ski lift together and were finally forced to confront their issues.
When together, your job is not necessarily to eliminate the possibility of disagreements but instead to help each other reach for each other during conflict
So, what is to learn from this? Easy. Both of you need to learn to navigate and hold on to each other, through conflict and through differences—it is what speaks to the testament of your relationship. When together, your job is not necessarily to eliminate the possibility of disagreements but instead to help each other reach for each other during conflict.
2. It is important to feel empowered to share what we really want with a partner.
Remember when Lily unexpectedly called off her engagement to Marshall to fulfil her lifelong dream of becoming an artist—which was put on pause after moving to New York with Marshall—by accepting an art fellowship in San Francisco?
The healthiest relationships are the ones where individuals can learn to be interdependent with each other without having to sacrifice or compromise their own authenticity.
Here’s something to always remember: the healthiest relationships are the ones where individuals can learn to be interdependent with each other without having to sacrifice or compromise their own authenticity. Because sometimes we make these decisions to put aside our dream and often what happens is we discover that actually, we can’t do it and then it has potential consequences. When we’re in relationships we have to feel empowered in ourselves and our desires and have the audacity to be clear about that.
3. Constantly chasing love could be an indicator of some unresolved personal issues.
From the moment we’re introduced to Ted Mosby, he’s obsessed with finding “the one.” It was an ongoing quest throughout the series that only ended when he met his future wife, Tracy, at Barney and Robin’s wedding.
People who are always searching for a relationship may be ignoring internal, emotional struggles. What is understandable about folks who chase love that hard is how scary being alone is or can feel. What has Ted not paid attention to or what has he not tended to? Because those things both influence his preoccupation with finding love as well as the difficulty with holding on to love.
Yeah, it is understandable that seeing friends like Marshall and Lily and, eventually, Barney and Robin partnered up can create insecurity for a single person in a friend group. But hey, that doesn’t mean Ted should be ashamed of how he’s feeling.
People who are always searching for a relationship may be ignoring internal, emotional struggles
4. Sometimes love isn’t enough to make a relationship work. You also need to have shared goals.
From the moment Ted and Robin’s eyes locked at MacLaren’s Pub, it was love at first sight—or at least for Ted. And this moment marks the beginning of his relentless pursuit of the budding newscaster. He laid it on pretty thick from the start—stealing a blue French horn to woo her and professing his love on the first date. But unfortunately, their goals didn’t align.
While Ted wanted a family, Robin was too focused on her career. This conflict is proof that love isn’t always enough to make a relationship work. We have to have shared goals and shared dreams. Yes, if you want to be in a relationship, remember it requires compromise—but they shouldn’t require us to compromise big things. For example, whether or not we want to build a family with children. If you have to persuade somebody to be in a relationship with you, that relationship isn’t going to work.
5. Relationships can be messy sometimes, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re destined to fail.
Barney and Robin’s coupling was fraught with complications from the beginning. After all, Ted dated Robin first, and Barney and Ted are best friends. Ted even stopped talking to Barney for a while when he found out Barney was sleeping with Robin.
We all have different tolerance levels and beliefs, so just because she has dated his best friend means that the relationship is doomed
But.. as messy as it all sounds, Robin and Barney’s marriage wasn’t necessarily ill-fated. We all have different tolerance levels and beliefs, so just because she has dated his best friend means that the relationship is doomed. The situation absolutely puts stress on their relationship, but the outcome is still up to them. How they manage that is really what says whether or not the relationship is doomed.
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