The Narrative: Audiobook Author Q&A with Simon Ong

NEW: The Narrative with Simon Ong

Written by Kelli

4 May 2022

Welcome to The Narrative, our new blog series that profiles the authors and narrators of the audiobooks that we love on xigxag. 

We are absolutely thrilled that our first in the series is with Life Coach Simon Alexander Ong, Author of Energize. Energize was published at the end of April 2022 by Penguin Random House and has been a huge hit already, with Simon Sinek stating “This book is exactly what we need in this moment”. 

Energize reveals how your physical, mental and relational energy affect your ability to think creatively and make progress towards your goals. By listening, you will learn how to renew, recharge and nurture yourself, so that you feel refreshed and alive rather than drained at the end of your day.

Count us in.

It’s been a privilege to have the opportunity to ask Simon some questions about Energize and his experience recording the audiobook, and we hope you enjoy this behind the scenes insight.

Q: What inspired you to write Energize?

A: The story that I share at the beginning of the book’s first chapter of a moment in my life where I was burnt out and living with little energy was one of the main contributors. The other is that I noticed that the world’s most successful people were not always the fastest or strongest, but they were the best when it came to staying energized. They understand that the bigger and bolder your goals are in life, the more energy you need. And I wanted to speak to this idea that energy is everything because without it, you really can’t get much done.

Simon Ong narrating his audiobok

Q: We love audiobooks narrated by the author as we think it adds richness and depth to the story. What did you enjoy about recording the audiobook?

A: As soon as I signed on as an author with Penguin Random House, I was determined to be the voice of my audiobook especially given how personal some of the chapters are to me.

Q: You wrote the book as a new parent during the pandemic which is a huge accomplishment. What impact did this unusual situation have on your own energy, and what tools did you use to cope?

A: I had to adapt a lot from both a personal and professional perspective, and one of the tools that I used to help cope was that of self-compassion. I simply focused on doing my best each day, with an understanding that doing your best as parents would be very different to doing your best as a young, single professional and to if you were working on the frontline as part of the country’s response to the pandemic. This unusual situation certainly impacted my energy and in very interesting ways – on the one hand, my physical energy was tested with the demands of parenthood and on the other, I was energized to see this book through to the end to make my daughter proud of her father.

Q: What do you think is the biggest cause of low energy in our modern lifestyles?

A: The addiction to being busy. When we get caught in the busyness trap, we lack the time and energy to reflect on what is most important, on how far we have come and on what we can be truly grateful for in our lives. As we begin to slow down however, we come to appreciate just how much of a superpower it is and that is because silence and stillness is full of the wisdom, insights and answers that we seek.  

Simon Ong Energize Audiobook Quote

Q: What do you believe is the most common misconception about energy?

A: That only our physical energy needs attention. It is important for sure, but we must not neglect our mental, emotional and spiritual energy. If you are doing work that keeps your talents hidden and your potential dormant for example, it becomes very difficult to show up each day as your best self. There will be this tension between what you are currently doing and what you know deep down inside of you that you are capable of. 

Simon Ong Energize Audiobook Quote

Q: We find audiobooks to be a popular solution for busy people who don’t have time to sit and read. Who do you think will benefit from listening to Energize the most?

A: Simply put, the people who will benefit the most are those who need more energy in every area of their life. In fact, when I was writing it, the person that I felt I was writing to the most was Simon in his early 20’s. During those years, I was lost, burnt out and frustrated that my career wasn’t going anywhere following the global financial crisis of 2008.  

Q: Is the audiobook designed to be listened to in a certain way? How do you think listeners will get the most out of it?

A: If you are listening to the audiobook whilst commuting, traveling or relaxing, then you will get the most out of it. It is a lot harder to get anything out of it if you try to listen while scrolling through your emails or social media feeds. The message here is to multitask wisely if you want to benefit the most from what is shared inside the book. 

Q: What are you listening to at the moment? 

A: If I’m honest… a lot of nursery rhymes given that our daughter has been home with us over the last week! I love it though because singing and dancing with her is just such a beautiful way to bond. 

We love your honesty, Simon! Thank you so much for taking the time to thoughtfully answer our questions. 

You can watch the trailer for Energize here:

If you’d like to learn more about making the most of every moment, download or stream Energize by Simon Alexander Ong on the xigxag app for £7.99, no subscription required.

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