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In New York, you can easily enroll for a course in immersive Italian, a seminar on caviar or a tutorial in shoemaking. But basic life lessons? We figured if we didn't know them by now, we were probably out of luck.

Then we discovered LifeLabs, a collection of classes taught around the city (many at the Actors Theatre in Chelsea) that fall somewhere between sociology and self-improvement--don?t worry, there are no trust falls. Classes include lessons on the art of persuasion, the importance of mistakes and even the essence of "cool."

Founder LeeAnn Renninger has a Ph.D. in social psychology from the University of Vienna, and her extensive research in the areas of interpersonal relations, perception and success has led her to some pretty cool conclusions--namely that regular people can boost their happiness simply by learning about and practicing the science of social interactions.

In the coming month, look for classes on perfect posture ($60 for two hours), detecting and reading micro-expressions ($60 for three hours) and the science of surprise ($40 for 2½ hours), all of which are taught by either Renninger or an equally qualified instructor.

Who knew being better at life was such an easily acquired skill?

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