Cory Kawa June 2020 Featured Image

June 2020 Month in Review

Reading Time: 3 minutes

What have I been learning this month?

I continued progressing through the edX Course Digital Transformation in Business. The focus last month was on the importance of staying ahead of technology disruptions. The focus this month was on how businesses can leverage technology, data, and social media to ensure future success. My big take-a-way was the importance of self reflecting, to analyze whether or not there are ways to better leverage technology to be more successful in our personal and professional lives.

What have I been reading?

Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging by Sebastian Junger – I first heard about this after listening to Joe Rogan interview Sebastian a few years back, and it has been on my wish list ever since. The book itself focuses on the importance of communities and shared purpose for emotional happiness and how the closed and safe nature of society is causing people to feel disconnected and alone, leading to higher levels of alcoholism, anxiety, and depression. In the book, he theorizes that the reason many people who come back from war have PTSD is not only the tragicness of what they witnessed but also the lack of support, purpose, and community they experience. What I found fascinating here are the parallels that exist between a thriving business culture that promotes community, a shared vision, and knowing how you contribute to that shared vision, leads to higher engagement and employee well being.

1Q84 by Haruki Murakami, this book has been on my wish list since it was released about ten years ago, due to the size I never got around to reading it, but with audible I decided to give the 46 hour listen a go. Haruki is a beautiful writer who writes with extreme detail, allowing you to feel like you are each of the characters in the book, living their moments, and understanding their hopes and dreams. Twelve hours in, I almost gave up. That same morning I randomly read a quote by Haruki on LinkedIn and decided it was a sign and that I should keep going, albeit at a much faster pace. With that, I slowly increased the playback pace from 1x to 3x. The speed was annoying at times, but necessary. The book itself tells the story of Aomame, an assassin who finds herself in a parallel universe and her childhood sweetheart Tango, and how their lives converge, including religious cults, fraud, murder, in a world with two moons where mysterious little people exist. All in all, a great book, but with two many unanswered questions for my liking.

In case you are curious, the quote that inspired me to finish the book was:

“And once the storm is over, you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.”

Haruki Murakami, Kafka on the Shore

Notes on the ups and downs of being an amateur triathlete

I didn’t talk about what I was obsessing about earlier, as it belongs here this month. Over the past several years, I have been trying to find new ways to challenge myself, be it harder events, running faster, or attempting my first hundred mile ride. 

My obsession this month has been to find a new way to challenge myself in the absence of sanctioned events and rides, and I keep coming back to a bike packing adventure.  

With that in mind, I have been focusing my training on building out long rides while also powering through some trainer sessions and mountain bike sessions to build out my strength. This month I accomplished the second longest ride of my life, which you can read about further here, Father’s Day Long Ride Report. I also finalized plans to participate in the Cannonball 300, which will involve a 307km ride from Dundas to Port Dover to Port Colbourne to St. Catharines and finishing back in Dundas. If you are interested in learning more about this ride, please follow my other blog,

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