We Condensed A Ton Of Self-Help Books Into 7 Love Tips That Actually Work

The best advice from some of the best relationship books on the market.

Last updated on Oct 23, 2023

Woman writing in a book or diary Ivanko_Brnjakovic | vladans | Getty Images / Elnur | Canva

We’re all so busy with life and work (and their dramas), that sometimes weeks and months go by between reading actual books.

It’s hard to motivate ourselves when mindless internet browsing feels so much easier and less mind-consuming. But what if reading a book can actually help us fix our love dramas? A great reason to turn that page.

But if you don't get around to it, fear not: We've done the work for you by culling the 7 best pieces of relationship advice from self-help books. (We'll bill you later.) 


We condensed a ton of self-help books into 7 must-know love tips:

1. Remember the facts of life, women bond by going out and talking about every detail of their lives. Men bond by going to a football game and talking about nothing. 

— Dushan Zaric & Jason Kosmas, You Didn’t Hear It From Us 


“Bartenders possess the highest aptitude for small talk of just about anyone, and the authors of this book (bartenders themselves) hit the nail on the head when it comes to chatting up a guy. Don’t talk to men as if they were your girlfriends. Don’t tell them about your problems, the mundanities of your life, or too-personal details. It doesn’t create intimacy, it creates panic,” says Mallory Farrugia, Editorial Director of Scribd.

RELATED: There Are Only 2 Reasons Why Guys Don't Text You Back

2. Remember always what you set out to get, and please don’t settle for less

― Greg Behrendt, He's Just Not That Into You: The No-Excuses Truth to Understanding Guys

This book is pretty simple, really. If you’re dating a guy and he disappears, doesn’t call, doesn’t want to talk about commitment, and doesn’t try to spend loads of time with you, then he’s just not that into you! “I think this book helps women to look closely at what is really happening in their dating relationships and to stop living in the realm of what could be or might be. Ultimately, “he’s just not that into you” allows women to respect themselves enough to move away from relationships that aren’t working, with the knowledge that it’s nothing personal; it’s just not a good match. And the book also equips women with the knowledge of what a relationship looks like when a man is into you," says Melanie Young of Heart Mind and Soul relationship coaching.


3. It's not your job to like me ― it's mine

― Byron Katie, I Need Your Love Is That True?

“There is so much simple wisdom in this book, which encourages us, as the reader, to question our thoughts and to ask ourselves “Who would you be without this thought?” says Young. This can be a real relationship saver if you, like many of us, are the type of person who can make up a big drama in your head. Even if you have major issues in your relationship, this book will encourage you to question how you see yourself, your partner, and your relationship as a whole enabling you to reach new insights about how to approach issues that are troubling you.

RELATED: 27 Signs He's 'Husband Material' (So Don't Let Him Go!)

4. At the core of all anger is a need that is not being fulfilled 

― Marshall B. Rosenberg, Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life   


“A book that teaches the reader how to communicate with someone who is angry or upset or when we are angry and upset. Most of us immediately get scared or angry and speak harshly when faced with anger from another or when we are feeling angry ourselves.  This book shows the reader how to ask questions and get to the root cause of the anger and suffering, enabling us to come to a satisfactory resolution for everyone involved,” says Young.

5. Being intimate with a man before he starts to have feelings for you is not going to whet his appetite as much as wither it. Of course, after he’s starting to fall in love with you, it’s an entirely different story. 

― Leil Lowndes, How to Create Chemistry with Anyone

“This quote is great — if well-established — advice, but the quote itself doesn’t do the book justice. Leil Lowndes takes a completely different approach to intimacy/love/relationship advice — she goes scientific,” says Young. Rather than trying to give you a pep talk as your favorite bartender or BFF would give it to you, she gives you scientific evidence that proves her advice to you. “Why won’t intimacy whet his appetite if it’s too early in the relationship? Because the ‘extraordinary dopamine surge’ that comes with male ejaculation "becomes less sensitive to the identical stimulus the second time, third time, and so forth.” And because the neurochemical state that comes from pure satisfaction is different than the state that comes from emotional and physical satisfaction. Can’t argue with that!” says Farrugia.

RELATED: Is This Love? 6 Unsexy Questions That Will Lead You Straight To The Answer


6. Every positive thing you do in your relationship is foreplay

― John M. Gottman, PhD, The Seven Principles For Making Marriage Work

"John Gottman has taken a scientific approach to working out why relationships work and why they fail. His “love lab” experiments from the 70’s are legendary. He invited couples to be part of his scientific experiments where their interactions were analyzed and then he kept in touch with the couple to determine which couples stayed together and which couples broke up. This book explains what to do and what not to do in order to make your relationship last. All backed up with science," says Young.

7. Dating someone’s "potential" is probably the biggest mistake women make in relationships and certainly the one that leads to our romantic downfall…Once you’ve unintentionally crushed a man’s ego (read: once he decides that he doesn’t want to reach the potential you have for him) it’s hard for him to be excited about you anymore.”

― Greg Behrendt & Amiira Ruotola,  It’s Just a Date


This is the best reality check for women — are you enamored with him, or with what you think he could become (by dating you)? “It’s part of our romantic fantasy — we envision ourselves dating a man and transforming him into a greater version of himself, one in which he fulfills all of his potential. However, Claire & Frank Underwood might be the only couple to have ever made this work (and does it really work?). The rest of us are just being delusional and unfair, and will likely end up dumped rather than becoming First Lady,” says Farrugia.

RELATED: 10 Dating Mistakes Even The Smartest, Savviest Women Make

Aly Walansky is a NY-based lifestyle writer. Her work appears in dozens of digital and print publications regularly.