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The Nerdist Way: How to Reach the Next Level (In Real Life)

3.74  ·  Rating details ·  4,487 Ratings  ·  461 Reviews
Nerds: Once a tormented subrace of humans... Now captains of industry You don?t have to be a stereotypical geekwad to appreciate the tenets of Nerdism and to make your innate talents for overanalysis and hyper-self-awareness work for you instead of against you. Join Nerd superstar Chris Hardwick as he offers his fellow ?creative-obsessives? the crucial information needed t ...more
Paperback, 304 pages
Published November 6th 2012 by Berkley (first published November 1st 2011)
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I remember loving Chris Hardwick when he co-hosted Singled Out on MTV with Jenny McCarthy. I had the hugest crush on him in my 13 year old heart. Even with that horrible 90s hair and clothes that looked like he found them on the street. SWOON.

But then after Singled Out ended, he just fell completely off my radar until recently, when I've been hearing his name all over the place. Of course I, being the highly observant and detail oriented person I totally am, didn't realize it was the same Chris
Nov 20, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like the idea of this book a whole lot. Hardwick's definition of "nerd" is right on: nerds are those with hyper-self-awareness, with minds that tend towards fixations. Obsessions. Whichever. Reading this book I was reminded of so many people I know, brilliant bright people with brilliant bright minds who are sometimes waylaid by their own processing speed. Hardwick's idea is to take the speed, to take the self-awareness, and to turn it into the asset. Like, I have all these awesome pointy kniv ...more
Hmm. I would have given this a three if he'd left out his handful of sexist jokes which popped up like periodic road blocks saying, "Why are you giving this book your time?!" It's a fair question since it's another self-help book where the author's credentials are only his experiences.

My impression of Chris Hardwick from a few episodes I've seen of The Nerdist on BBC-A are that he is not sexist. I believe he was sincere when he wrote that he wants to help people feel better with his book.

Why the
Darth J
The first thing you should know about Chris Hardwick if you are unfamiliar is that he is like the preacher of the geek god pantheon - because every Whedon, Lucas, and Abrams out there needs someone spreading the good word. Anyway, if you've never heard of Hardwick or his semi-pornish name then you probably aren't a nerd to begin with and you need to reexamine your life and what you are doing on a website devoted to reading.

On to the book, it's actually pretty damn good. The advice is solid and
Jul 24, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Audiobook. Oh my god, I am so glad this is over.

People writing self-help books would probably benefit from being gentle, coaxing, humble, honest and persuasive. Hardwick is overconfident, arrogant, annoying, profane and his advice is useless.

I was embarrassed to be listening to this in the car with somebody else, because it was bad. Two different passengers, two identical observations: "This guy is a jackass".

The first section is the most useful of the three, offering a suggestion to base your g
With nerd in the title, it's hard to believe I was not in at least one of the target audiences for this book. Sadly, I was not. This is a very basic foundational book for at least one the following: 1) male nerds, 2)people that have suffered from mental illness, 3)people who have suffered from addiction/substance abuse 4)people that do not engage in any physical activities and/or lack basic nutritional knowledge, and 5) people that don't understand time management and/or struggle with organizati ...more
Jonathan Wilson
Like it when the author narrates their own book.
Nov 15, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I know what you’re thinking. Why in the hell would I take self-help advice from the former co-host of MTV’s dating game show “Singled Out”? Well, fair point, but consider this. Shortly after the show ended, Hardwick fell onto hard times: alcoholism, weight gain, wrecked credit, inconsistent employment, and the kicker: he was working as an intern at “The Daily Show” when Jon Stewart told interview guest (and former “Singled Out” co-host) Jenny McCarthy that Hardwick was the guy who fetched everyo ...more
Jan 23, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I generally don’t read self-help books, but I picked this up because I am a fan of Chris Hardwick. Hardwick, who some may recognize as being one of the hosts of MTV’s Singled Out way back in the 90s, spent much of his 20s partying, drinking, and generally ruining his life. What happened when he hit 30 is best expressed in his own words:

"Then, when I hit thirty, I began to look around at my life: I was consuming a baby elephant’s weight in alcohol EVERY DAY. I lived in a shitty apartment near UCL
Jul 02, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
While I consider myself a fan of things Nerdist, I found this book a chore to read and ultimately threw in the towel with about 20 pages left. Some of the reasons:

* I actually didn't realize it was a self-help book when I picked it up. I don't ever read those. This one seemed better than most in that it didn't use a lot of new-agey mumbo-jumbo to 'help' the reader.

* I appreciate Hardwick's efforts to make this accessible to nerds, but it seemed geared to a very specific sort of person, namely a
Jenny Stanfield
Jan 03, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: comedic-humour
Well, everyone who know me knows of my love for the Nerdist network and Chris Hardwick. He is hilarious, witty and an amazing host/interviewer.

This book is helpful in a number of ways - in fact, the ways that the book are divided into (Mind, Body, Time). I especially liked the list and explanation of the tools/software used during the book's writing and production (shout out to Evernote!)

I have to admit, I got a little annoyed at the CAPS LOCKS TO BE SUPER EMPHATIC thing that is peppered libera
Mike McDevitt
Jan 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I didn't think it was possible. Nothing since school used to make me exercise has EVER made me exercise. This heady combination of humour, indefatigable optimism, and cursing is amazing. Or to use the vernacular: AMAZEBALLS.
Chris Hardwick speaks exactly my language and I'd like to own this as an e-book for future reference. It's in the bookstore humour section, but it was also a surprisingly insightful life guide. Likening oneself to a role-playing character and gaining experience is preferable
Nov 16, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 2011
I guess I've never read a self-help book before, because I went into this expecting some funny philosophizing from a self-proclaimed nerd who likes Doctor Who and instead found a step-by-step instruction book that included creating an RPG-ish notebook where you give yourself points and a how-to about cleaning up your credit score. Fine and fluffy at best, but I'd expect someone who insists he's super-nerdy to have a better grasp of "your" vs. "you're" and to know that symbols are not the things ...more
May 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Reviewed at Brunner's Bookshelf

This book was great. Check out my review to read the full thing and check out a clip video of some of the best #Hashtag wars from Comedy Centrals @Midnight show
I am not the biggest fan of self-help books, but this one looked fun.

Humorous advice on how nerds can take hold of their lives, get out of their own way, and become more organized, productive, and focused.

3 dimensions to...
Mind: how to get your brain to work for you and not aging you...
Body: a fertIle mind...
Time: the first two are all but useless...


Even though the book was published in 2011, some of the tech terminology is already dated. I mean, 3G mobile networks are no longer the thin
Apr 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'll be honest, I'm biased when it comes to Chris Hardwick. That said, this book was entertaining and rather useful (in a weird way). Part biographical, part self-help and all comedy Hardwick manages to convey the...lighter side of being a total nerd. 

For anyone who has ever obsessed over anything, for anyone who knows a TV show or sport or reality star's life inside and out--this book will be a treasure trove of 'So other people are like this!' And it might even help shed light on a culture peo
Jul 25, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good, and definitely written in the voice of Chris Hardwick, nerd extraordinaire, and a guy whose career I've been following since the early 90s. I give this book an A for effort but a B overall.

Personally, for me, the meat is in the first section, where I highlighted damn near everything. I kinda wish Chris had offered up the best weight loss advice I ever heard - do what works for you - but instead it was the same old obvious stuff I've always heard and which never helped me lose a pound. Yes,
Sunny Purdin
Nov 10, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
I want a mini Chris Hardwick to sit on my shoulder and tell me everything is going to be okay! This book is a self-help book that brisks through all the self-help advice almost anyone could need; health, addiction, living your dreams, etc. (thought he does claim that he is no expert, but someone who has lived through these things.) I definitely related to Hardwick and it was a fun listen (I have it on audio. Thanks,!) I just started getting into Nerdist podcasts, so I will definitely ...more
Sarina  Sicurella
Dec 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I have been a Chris Hardwich fan for a while and was pumped to read his book. Some points in the book gave me great relief, it made me feel like I am not the only weirdo in the world who thinks this about themselves or has a habbit of doing whatever. It was good to see! I also appreciate his advice !
I love the idea of created a Character tome. It made me really want to start playing Dungeons and Dragons. I did infact make one and while looking at it and creating my inventory of weapons I realiz
Nov 21, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I've been obsessively listening to the Nerdist podcast for a couple of months now, and have loved the great discussions of craft (writing, acting, standup) that have happened with various guests inbetween the Doctor Who obsessiveness. So when I saw that Chris Hardwick had a book out, I picked it up without knowing it was a self-help book.

As a self-help book, it has a lot of quality advice, but it lacks the charm and spontaneity that I find so attractive in the Nerdist Podcast. Compared to liste
Apr 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who love change
Recommended to G. by: The Nerdist
I'm a fan of Mr. Hardwick and have followed the ups and downs of his career over the last couple of decades, and I am a downloader of his Nerdist podcasts (which I recommend to everybody...subscribe through iTunes or go to so I was very happy to get my hands on his book and read it. Basically a self-help/motivational work baked inside a nice autobiography. I'm one of those people who believes that self-help is the best kind of help and that self-help books can change your life in ma ...more
Maria (books&boardgames)
I was torn between 4 and 5 stars (I need half stars, damn it!!!), but I think one or two Back to the Future references tilted the scales in the book's favor.

Chris Hardwick has written a delightfully funny Nerd guide to personal accomplishment. There are some things that didn't sit so well with me, but overall it's a legitimate work that any Nerd would like to consult from time to time.

I also think I drained my Kindle's battery with all the highlighting.
Sep 24, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bottom-shelf
This guy may have some Nerd-Cred because he claims to have been a member of his high school chess club, and claims to have been shoved in a locker by some jocks at lest once. He also claims to have once been a virginal player of D&D... but I don't know... I'm not buying it.
The book really had no bearing on nerd culture. In fact, the book seems to be saying "I'm no longer a nerd, a geek, or a dork! Here's how I escaped, so now I'm going to show you how to do it."
I couldn't finish it.
Nov 15, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great chapter for obsessive over-thinkers: Dr. Xaviering Your Mind
Mark Victor Young
Sep 19, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Yes, I'm finished with this book, Goodreads. Totally finished. Chris Hardwick is a guy who likes to write down things that happen to him, and stuff from his daily journal, or financial plan notes, or whatever crosses his mind. He likes to write down a lot of stuff. He got a personal trainer and wrote down a lot of the things he said. Now you have this book. Go fitness! There are also pages and pages of garbage dietary advice that he literally advises you not to take because he is not a nutrition ...more
Apr 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-book, nerds
I picked this up as an audio book from a library display on humor without realizing it was a self-help book. Of course some of the information wasn’t specifically applicable to me (as always happens with self-help books), but this was fun, upbeat, inspiring with a good dose of humor and nerdy references. Now to seek out some more from this genre.
Kater Cheek
I can't remember what enticed me to pick up this audiobook, except that I'm kind of a sucker for self-help books, and one that is designed to be used by "nerds" has a cute angle. I've never heard of Chris Hardwick, and am not familiar with any of the shows he brags about having been a part of, but I presume that most readers are fans of his. From what I gleaned from the book, he's a comedian and tv personality who also has a blog.

It must be daunting to write a self-help book, because there are s
Jacqueline O.
Dec 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jacqueline O. by: Julie Capell
A friend of mine recommended this book to me, and I eventually bought a copy and read it. I did get stuck in the book a few places, putting it down for weeks at a time, but I also finally finished reading it. As self-help books go, it's probably better than most, though it still boils down to, "My life was a mess, I fixed it, and you can too." Though the reality is, for most people, often much more complicated.
The style of the book is conversational, chatty, and non-formal. There's plenty of cap
Jun 14, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I like Chris Hardwick. I first found out about him from his articles in Wired, and I started listening to his podcast. He seems like a cool guy, and when I heard that he’d written a self-help book, I figured I’d give it a go.

Since he is a self-described nerd, and he is building his “Nerdist” empire, the book is written towards what he imagines nerds to be. Now, I have been labeled a nerd since about the third grade, and I seem to fulfill many of the qualifications, yet huge swaths of this book
Dec 27, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Listened For Fun (Audible)
Overall Rating: 4.25
Good to Know Rating: 4.00
Knowledge Manager Rating: 4.50 (aka Chris Hardwick)

Audio Rating: 4.50 (not part of the overall rating)

First Thought When Finished: This was a humorous self-help book with some really great ideas! Nothing new but the presentation really worked!

Good To Know Thoughts: I will admit that self-help books are kind of my guilty pleasure. I am also a total geek and a big fan of all things nerdom. Here is the deal, if you read any kind
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6DRAKE: Book Review #3 The Nerdist Way (Autobiography) 1 4 Mar 12, 2014 01:32PM  
Nerd v. Jock 1 14 Mar 03, 2013 07:36AM  
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Christopher Ryan "Chris" Hardwick is an American television host, stand-up comedian, actor, writer, producer, podcaster, musician, and voice artist.
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“Worry is a misuse of your imagination.” 37 likes
“When you don't take an aggressive role in shaping your thoughts, feelings, and perceptions, you become a helpless passenger floating through the universe like a ghost ship, merely reacting to wherever it takes you.” 11 likes
More quotes…