It is said that if you do what you love in your career, the rewards will be richer than financial gain, awards or accolades.

The truly successful, we hear, are those who feel passion for their work, even when it’s difficult, and push forward to do their personal best all the time. The lucky ones are those who achieve success in their chosen field, yet stay grounded in the things that really matter, none of which money or awards can buy. Let me tell you why I love what I do.

I get to meet amazing people. An important part of my work is interviewing fascinating individuals, often those who don’t see themselves as even remotely interesting. I have the opportunity to ask them personal questions about their lives, work, whatever the topic may be.

Sometimes we go beyond the surface and talk about things that are hard to talk about, such as tragedies and challenges. Everyone has a story to tell. Everyone should get to tell it. I have the privilege of listening.

No matter what the subject matter or whom I am speaking to, I always learn something I didn’t know before. I have to open my mind to new things. It changes my outlook on my own life, priorities and goals.

A good interview lifts me up and makes me want to be a better person. Try harder. Work smarter. Stay focused. Be positive. It’s one of the best things about being a writer. It’s not the portfolio of work I have created. Let’s be clear: it’s not about the money. Nobody in their right mind would choose writing with big dreams of retiring with wealth (or at this point in my life, at all).

It’s about the people I meet, the relationships I make and the stories I get to tell. It’s about inspiration.

For this week’s equine edition of Inside Wellington I had the great honour to interview harness racing driver and trainer Carl Jamieson of Rockwood, on his journey to the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame. Talk about inspiration.

My background research on Jamieson offered an impressive list of racing wins and titles. But as impressive as all that was, it was the story of the man himself that left me with a sense of hope that hard work and big risks do eventually pay off. This is a man who has based everything on intuition and horse sense. And he never stops.

As I sat there in his kitchen, his wife Debbie told me stories about financial risks the pair took to buy horses in the early years, despite having a young family to feed, and how that gamble would eventually pay off.

There is something awe inspiring about a couple that takes a leap of faith because they believe in what they are building together for their family. Not many couples could withstand the pressure of the horse racing lifestyle, especially when life gets in the way.

It was very clear that the trophies and titles would mean nothing to Jamieson if his family was not there to be a part of it. That impressed me most of all.

That night I told the Carpenter we were selling the house to buy a racehorse. He said no. I guess marrying a writer was risk enough for him. It’s a good thing I love what I do. And the Carpenter loves that.