Millions have fallen in love with the the fun-spirational Ob/Gyn Mindy Lahiri, protagonist of The Mindy Project, including her co-worker Danny Castellano. But even if you've never seen the show, you can still learn a lot about love and relationships from this romantic comedy TV series.
While you count down the hours to the spring premier on Hulu, you can also count 13 Mindy-approved lessons about love:
1. The love of your life could be standing right in front of you ... if only you could see past all their faults.
Everyone knew Mindy and Danny would end up together from the pilot — except them. But watching these characters develop from co-workers who barely tolerated each other to reliable, if unlikely, friends made it all the more satisfying when they finally got together.
Today's Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy prove that real, lasting love doesn't happen overnight. It takes time to grow — just like the people it involves.
2. The strongest relationships are built on clear, concise, and some "cute" communication.
Mindy Lahiri has no filter and no chill. When she wants something in a relationship, she asks for it — usually in the form of "Exsqueeze me?" Though she often doesn't get it, at least her partners always know where she stands.
Every relationship can benefit from honest and open communication.
3. Keep your standards as high as your clubbing heels.
Once again, Mindy's candid personality provides inspiration and a lesson in self-worth. While you don't want to be too picky, knowing what you don't want in a potential mate is just as important as knowing what you do want.
Establish your deal breakers and date accordingly to save yourself a lot of time and heartache on the windy path to love.
4. Always appreciate and/or make idle threats when receiving a token of love.
Whether it's a bouquet of flowers, a box of chocolates, or simply pausing Netflix while you go to the bathroom, Mindy's taught us to be grateful (and mildly suspicious) of everyday shows of affection.
5. You can venture outside your office building to find love but, like, why would you want to?
We should all be in awe of the sheer number of men (FOUR) Mindy was able to date without leaving the comfort of her office. You know what they say: It's all about location, location, location!
6. There's a thin line between love and hate.
What makes Mindy and Danny's relationship so real and relatable is that they disagreed almost daily when they were just co-workers/friends, and those disagreements didn't magically disappear when they started dating.
That's not just refreshing to see in a rom-com, but also emphasizes the importance of not changing yourself for someone else. (But let's not forget compromising in a relationship is key, too.)
7. Wanting to make out with someone is a great reason to date them — but shouldn't be the only one.
While Mindy worked her way through a seemingly endless supply of attractive men, the majority of her love interests never transcended the casual dating stage into a real relationship.
But even those nails-on-a-chalkboard experiences taught us something important: Don't date anyone you can't stand for more than 30 minutes — no matter how hot they are.
8. Every failed relationship can still provide you with personal insight — and great material for your memoir.
Mindy had to kiss, date, and almost marry a lot of frogs before she realized "the one" had been there all along. Every terrible first date and disastrous relationship shaped both Mindy and Danny into the people they needed to be so they could fall in love with each other.
And while their romantic future was left on a cliffhanger, and may very well fail too, they're sure to have learned something important no matter the outcome.
9. Everyone expresses their love in different ways — some more photogenically than others.
No matter how much you wish your S.O. could read your mind, they can't. So if you're not getting what you want out of a romantic interaction, take a page out of The Lahiri Handbook. Put on that #nofilter and straight up ask for it.
That being said, when someone goes out of their way to show they care, always try and show your appreciation.
10. Love is a disease, but, like, one of the good ones.
Once Danny caught "Mindy Fever," he was diagnosed with a terminal case ... of loooove. While not always the perfect boyfriend (who is?), he nonetheless proved his devotion time and again through his words, his actions, and his begrudging willingness to participate in her Lucy Ricardo-level shenanigans.
Love makes you do crazy things for another person, but that's not always a bad thing. If nothing else, it makes for great TV.
11. Real people deserve grand romantic gestures too, you know!
Mindy knows she isn't a character in a Nora Ephron movie, but she still believes herself worthy of that kind of epic love. While many may never meet the love of their life on top of the Empire State Building, we all deserve to.
So if you're waiting for someone to show their love through an epic romantic gesture, why not take the reins yourself?
12. Before you can truly love someone else, you need to learn to love yourself. After all, what's not to love?
When it comes to self-esteem, Mindy Lahiri is killing the game. She appreciates her assets while still recognizing and embracing her flaws. Though she certainly has her moments of self-doubt (most of which are spent lying adorably on the floor), her confidence radiates from the inside out.
Because she's happy in her individual life, she's better able to share that life with someone special.
13. If you can't find love, you can still eat and pray. But mostly eat.
Sure, most want someone to grow old with, but no one should be living their life for another person either. Though this series centers on Mindy's quest for romantic love, that search inadvertently highlights the importance of platonic, familial, and self-love.
With a dynamic career, encouraging friends, and a growing family, Mindy's future is bright — with or without Danny. If she decides to be single, she won't just survive. She'll thrive.
Cover photo via Giphy.