A friend of mine tweeted this fantastic blog post about the importance of considering intentions and meaning in interactions (particularly in the workplace.) I really resonate with this message because growth is only possible when we hold each other up and ask each other to do our best.
It reminds me of something Ken Wilber calls "idiot compassion." Idiot compassion would give an alcoholic a drink simply because they are suffering. Real compassion would consider the meaning behind the suffering with the understanding that suffering can be a part of healing and growth. Real compassion integrates an element of wisdom.
This is the sort of thing I try to embody in my life and in my work: sincerity, critical feedback, and thoughtful consideration in everything that I do. Unfortunately, as a contractor/freelancer, you're often put in a delicate place where the lack of long-term commitment in the relationship can mean employing these values strains the relationship beyond the tolerance of the parties involved. I've been fired from gigs for this sort of thing and have strained corporate power structures in employment, but it's not something I can shelve easily. I always move on and find clients or employers who appreciate the importance of honesty, critique, and at the end of the day, the value of integrity.