There are so many of us, at so many levels, in such a subjective field. There are only so many prizes, wall space in galleries or museums or patrons willing and able to buy.
Even if a so-called expert loves your work, there are two experts who don't. Whose opinion and contacts carry more weight? At some point we may be in it to satisfy ourselves, but don't we all somewhere, deep down, want to compete with others, to win?