I was singularly fortunate to accumulate honours with Crosssmaglen Rangers and Armagh over the course of my playing career.
Yet while the trophies, medals and awards flowed in, I never lost sight of what I loved most - participation itself.
Yes, I enjoyed the craic with my fellow players, lapped up the celebrations when triumphs were the order of the day, basked in the back-slapping by the fans and drank in the praise that came my way from time to time.
But underpinning everything was the immense satisfaction I derived from actually taking part in games, irrespective of whether it was club or county colours in which I was garbed, or where the match was or who the opposition happened to be.
As we wallow in nostalgia and with the coronavirus crisis eradicating live action, there are many like me who will be reflecting on their sporting careers and dissecting the highs and lows they brought.
Since retiring from playing, I have thoroughly enjoyed my role as an analyst, columnist and pundit - in fact, I revel in it.
Yet for all the tremendous satisfaction I have derived from this, including the financial remuneration, I can say, hand on heart, that it does not compensate for the sublime feeling that invariably engulfed me when I crossed the white line and entered the field of battle.
More often than not, it's only when players finally hang up their boots that they come to appreciate the enjoyment they derived from being an integral part of a team.
I have to say that I got an awful lot more out of sport than the victorious feeling which winning things invariably triggered.
It has almost become taboo now to say you want to win things, but after your career has ended, it's only when you reflect and think about successes you have achieved that you also really take on board the ultimate satisfaction you had in achieving this.
The buzz that competitive sport generates is unmatched in any element of anyone's life, I feel.
Irrespective of what sport it is, should that be football, golf, boxing, rugby, hockey, athletics or whatever, participation should be everything.
I must confess that I always found myself to be a junkie when it came to competitive sport.
In terms of training, I found this something of a bind and I have to say that I found it very difficult to give everything.
If truth be told, I wanted to save my energy for the game the following weekend, but when I entered the field of play, I became a completely different animal.
I was always demanding the ball and my main aim was to stick it over the bar or in the net. Occasionally, would you believe, I also laid on scores for colleagues!
I don't think there is anything else in life that is as fulfilling as that competitive edge, which is the cornerstone of real sport.
Others might find this intimidating and I can understand why, but I always liked to challenge myself on the field of play. I invariably felt that in playing to optimum levels, I was assisting the team's cause and I liked to leave the arena after every game conscious that I had given my all.
I think you lose this when you stop playing.
Matches may be won, lost or drawn, but that is incidental - what is most important is the participation.
I often hear the word 'transition' used to describe a person's changed lifestyle when they stop playing, but the truth is that they never find a viable alternative to the cut and thrust of participation in live sporting action.
When players talk about the current lack of action caused by the coronavirus crisis, it's the taking part in their sport that they really miss more than anything.
Once your competitive streak goes, it can never be replaced. You can coach, mentor, train or prepare players, but you will not get the same level of satisfaction you got from taking to the field.
If you can play without feeling pressure or without having to think too deeply about it, then you are truly privileged - go for it!