"Jersey Shore" star Vinny Guadagnino is out to prove there's more to him than just being a suave guido who occasionally suffers from pink eye. In his new book, "Control the Crazy: My Plan to Stop Stressing, Avoid Drama, and Maintain Inner Cool," Guadagnino proves that not only can he pronounce such serious names as Deepak Chopra, Thich Nhat Hanh and Eckhart Tolle, but he also sees himself as an "ambassador" to their influential brand of pop-psych for a younger generation.
"They are the masters. I certainly didn't invent this stuff, but it wasn't them inventing it either," he told Metro. "It's just a message that can be told in many different voices — a Buddhist monk, a psychologist, a spiritual guru or now, you know, a cast member of the 'Jersey Shore.'"
For Guadagnino, who has suffered from various panic disorders since high school and even during Season 1 of the show that made him famous, it was this anxiety that led him to start reading the self-help genre.
"I started to read these books and put together a program in my head for myself. That program is what I use a lot on four seasons of 'Jersey Shore,' and it's gotten me through all of them."
Until last year, at least, when Guadagnino took a brief hiatus from Season 5. "The last season got a little overbearing for me, because we had this stressful schedule where we had to come over and start a new season straight from Italy," he explains of his dramatic (yet brief) departure from the series.
"What happened on the show, it happened for me naturally. So I said, 'You know what? Now's the perfect opportunity to try to help people because they know I'm not bulls--ing. It's all real life.'"
Speaking of real life, with J-Woww, Snooki and Pauly D all enjoying spin-off shows, what's next for Guadagnino?
"This will definitely be a part of my career for a long time to come — being a younger voice that speaks about serious issues," he says. "I was a political science major, and I've always been interested in and involved in political and social movements. I like having a grassroots, soldier-on-the-field approach to these issues, rather than it always being like a doctor or a lawyer."