I watched a bunch of videos by Jackson Galaxy a few days ago. I learned a lot about cats. For example, when they blink slowly, that means they like you. Also, since they really "don't give a rip about pleasing you," your only hope of changing their behavior is through something they do care about, which is food.
He also introduces the concept of Cat Mojo, which is basically cat self-esteem. In fact, it makes working with cats sound really similar to working with humans, where you get people to cooperate by helping them meet their emotional needs.