I hang out around a lot of effective altruists. Many of them are motivated primarily by something like guilt (for having great resource and opportunity while others suffer) or shame (for not helping enough). Hell, many of my non-EA friends are primarily motivated by guilt or shame.
I'm not going to criticize guilt/shame motivation: I have this policy where, when somebody puts large amounts of effort or money towards making the world a better place, I try really hard not to condemn their motives. Guilt and shame may be fine tools for jarring people out of complacence. However, I worry that guilt and shame are unhealthy long-term motivators. In many of my friends, guilt and shame tend to induce akrasia, reduce productivity, and drain motivation. So over the next few weeks, I'll be writing a series of posts about removing guilt/shame motivation and replacing it with something stronger.
Say you're a college student, and you have a paper due. The quality of the paper will depend upon the amount of effort you put in. We'll say that you know the project pretty well: you can get an A with only moderate effort, and with significant effort you could produce something much better than the usual A-grade paper.
The education environment implicitly attempts to convince students that their preferences point ever rightward along this line. Parents and teachers say things like "you should put in your best effort," and they heap shame upon people who don't strive to push ever rightward along the quality line.