Let’s be honest: you’d never step foot onto the subway with a copy of I’m OK, You’re OK. You wouldn’t want to be caught dead with The Secret. And Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus? Gross. There’s nothing very cool about most self-help titles, mostly because there’s nothing badass about feeling compelled to read one. But that’s the kind of thinking that keeps people locked in their own ruts, their despair, or their prolonged adolescence: the refusal to seek help in the first place. And it doesn’t help that most self-help books are incredibly lame and sappy and full of feelings. Ugh!
But it’s not fair that books offering self-improvement tactics get such a bad rap, especially when there are plenty that offer invaluable advice — and do so in less lame ways. Here are ten books that can help you get through a variety of problems. Even better: they’re not the kind of books you’ll have to embarrassingly hide under your mattress.