most of the time we do what we do because we believe its the right thing to do (or sometimes because we just need the cash...);
we don't do it to seek praise or public adoration, we do it to keep the wheels of the universe spinning a little more smoothly, and to hopefully contribute to a slightly better world than the one we found when we arrived in it;
but sometimes someone sees what we're doing, and pats us on the back - not because they have to, but because they want to recognise and encourage us. And when that happens its very empowering and motivating. How do I know? Because it happened to me recently - turns out I won a national award from the Institute of Enterprise and Entrepreneurship in recognition for the impact I'm creating through my mentoring various enterprises (didn't realise I'd even been nominated!)
And did I enjoy the glitzy award ceremony at the Houses of Parliament? No - because I'd already promised a local charity that I'd be spending that afternoon with them, helping them to try and resolve some of their frustrations and tensions in how they manage themselves to ensure that adults with learning disabilities can enjoy a higher quality of life, while at the same time they as an organisation can keep paying their bills...