Let’s talk about Lea Salonga’s viral video, shall we?
The past few days, Lea made waves because she denied some fans a photo op. Her response drew different reactions. Some agreed with Lea, others also bashed Lea.
I rarely comment on issues like this but I feel this is something we can all learn from.
As a speaker who helps leaders and organizations create a culture where everyone feels safe, seen, and appreciated, let’s consider the POVs and feelings of both parties — the fans and Lea.
As fans, yes, it may be painful to be denied of a photo op from someone you really admire. As the fans said, It’s just a photo, it will only take a few seconds.
She was in her dressing room when the fans asked for a photo. She said, “Who are you? Sorry I don’t know who you are.”
She then directed the fans to wait for her outside the dressing room.
Who was right and who was wrong?
First, how the fans felt was valid. They got hurt. It’s okay to get hurt and feel all your emotions.
When we experience hurt, it’s essential to acknowledge and honor our feelings. However, it’s equally important to take full responsibility for managing our emotions rather than relying on someone else to do it for us. The task of feeling better lies within us, not with another person.
Second, what Lea felt and her call to action were valid. Her privacy was invaded and she had the right to say no. (If I may add, she was polite with the way she declined the request for photos.)
Whether you are a private person or a famous actress like Lea, each of us has the right to say no and state our boundaries.
I admire Lea for being true to herself and brave enough to say no even at the risk of disappointing others and being bashed.
May this become the norm: FEELING SAFE TO SAY NO AND EXPRESSING OUR BOUNDARIES.
The problem the world faces right now is the sense of entitlement. Many times, we feel entitled. May this be a lesson for all of us to learn how to respect other people’s boundaries.
This reminded me of a funny encounter with my 5-year-old goddaughter, Z, this morning. She sent me a voice message, saying she had a video of a monster. Then she added, “Ninang Sha, if you’re not scared, I can send the video to your phone.”
What a mature, empathetic, socially in-tune little girl she is! She knew I wasn’t into monsters and scary stuff, so she asked for my permission first before sending the video. I’m so impressed that at a young age, she already knows how to respect other people’s boundaries.
May we all learn from little 5-year old Z.
What’s your take on the Lea Salonga issue? I’d love to hear your thoughts. Let’s be respectful in our comments.
Photo credit: @herelieslovebway on IG
Sha Nacino is a motivational speaker, TEDx speaker, author, and adjunct faculty at the Asian Institute of Management. For speaking invitations, visit shanacino.com or email us at email@example.com