Size and How It May Matter, or Not


I walked into my apartment in Athens four days ago after a year’s absence.

Coming back from the US (no, not Texas but everything in general is larger on the other side of the Atlantic), the first thing that struck me was how small my place looked.

Cozy, funky, familiar and warm – many characterizations that could also be attributed – however the first word that flashed on my brainscreen was “small.”

Used to much bigger spaces, my spatial perspective went into overdrive comparison mode. My daughter was semi-offended: “What, you forgot what this place is like?” she asked incredulously…I paused.

My coaching hat came on. I had to go into deeper structure. How is it that out of all the data, the feelings, the sensations of opening the door and coming “home,” size was the one that made the first impression?

What does this feeling of “smallness” represent? Is it that I commented on how much smaller my Greek apartment really is, or how much bigger my California home is?

Was it the size that mattered or the feeling of suddenly becoming encased, engulfed, rooted and at the same time exposed, vulnerable and alert – ready for yet another new chapter.

So, here I am going through the repatriation pains – Athens traffic, noise, idiosyncrasies – Greek norms to which I have to get re-adjusted, jet lag, adjustments and re-acquaintances.

In the end, and very shortly I will recover and go about my manic pace. Home is the place the heart recognizes. And most of the time – size – really, truly and truthfully this time – does not really matter.

Leda Karabela
Leda Karabela's career focus has been building alliances with and among institutional stakeholders, which spans 25 years of experience in international management, public affairs, strategic marketing and philanthropy. Her primary focus has been external audiences, such as opinion leaders, media, customers, and donors.

Today, she is bringing her executive experience into the field of coaching, realizing her passion for people, the ways they click and connect with each other, helping clients discover the power within them to improve their performance, effectiveness and reach. Having held responsibilities for global projects and working with virtual teams in multiple countries for Fortune 50 companies such as BP and Microsoft, she has also led the corporate relations program at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business and has lived in Boston, San Francisco, London, Athens and Dubai.
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