While How I Met Your Mother is full of life lessons from all of its characters, the one we learned the most from was Ted Mosby — specifically when he narrated the show, named by viewers as “Future Ted” as he spoke to his children, teaching them everything he learned in his younger years before he met their mother.
Nothing Good Happens After 2 A.M.
In the Season 1 episode titled after this important piece of advice, Ted becomes convinced his current girlfriend Victoria is about to end things. He then accepts Robin’s late-night invitation to her place where they ultimately almost take things too far.
Think Twice Before Sending The Texty Text
Near the end of Season 4 when Ted blatantly ignores Barney’s “three days rule” about texting a woman whose number he just received, he not only sends her a text, but one of the — albeit sweet — cringiest texts ever.
You Can Pull It Off
Ted oozed confidence for an entire nine seasons; in work, in relationships, and in attire. Despite his friends countless jabs at one of his favorite accessories, Ted stuck to his guns and always assured them he could indeed pull off those red cowboy boots.
Build Your Own Skyscraper
Ted’s career in architecture was a bumpy road. When he disagreed with the way his boss designed the city’s latest skyscraper, instead of succumbing to something he didn’t believe in, Ted designed his own.
You Gotta Make The Mistake
Whether it was staying up past 2 A.M., sending the texty text, or countless relationship blunders, half of the series was about the mistakes Ted made while sharing those life lessons with his children. But in most of those scenarios, the interesting thing about Ted was that he knew they were all mistakes.
‘Professor’ Is Spelled With One F, Not Two
Much like how Full House taught everyone how to spell ‘success,’ HIMYM taught its viewers an important spelling lesson. When Ted gives his first lecture as a professor, just as he’s about to write his name on the blackboard, he has a full-on internal crisis over the spelling of ‘professor.’
Stealing Is Okay When It’s For Love
In the very first episode of the series, Ted and Robin go on their first date and Robin compliments the restaurant’s decorative blue French horn hanging on the wall. Ted gets a little unethical with his romantic gesture that tops off their date.
Whether it was a truce with a beer after a fight, roadtripping with “500 Miles” stuck on repeat, or offering up a “sandwich,” despite Ted’s countless relationships throughout the series, he always made room for his four best friends.
Wait For It
While “wait for it” technically became Barney’s catchphrase, the action was something that Ted demonstrated season after season. Because no matter how many times he thought a woman was “the one” and was forced to face the truth that she wasn’t, he kept on waiting.
“Wait for it” was seemingly the How I Met Your Mother equivalent to the saying, “Good things come to those who wait,” and reminded the viewers that even if it takes nine seasons, the wait is worth it.
Don’t Give Up Until You Find Your Yellow Umbrella
The yellow umbrella wasn’t only a symbol of HIMYM, it told the story of Ted’s journey to finding the future mother of his children. When “The Mother” lost it, Ted found it. Ted used it to stay dry from the rain when he met Stella, the reason he became a professor, where “The Mother” sees him for the first time. When he later dates Cindy, he accidentally leaves the umbrella at her apartment, where it’s revealed to the audience that “The Mother” happens to be Cindy’s roommate.
After Barney and Robin’s wedding, Ted officially meets “The Mother” and is reunited with the yellow umbrella that she’s carrying. It was a long and bumpy road for that yellow umbrella — owned and then lost by both Ted and “The Mother” — but in the end, Ted showed everyone what can happen when you don’t give up on looking for your “yellow umbrella.”
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