I've learned is that whenever I surrender my judgement of what's good and bad for me I gain a new perspective. A while back, my son was arrested for assaulting a police officer. I called my sponsor immediately. His response was "Congratulations". My sponsor was able to see beyond the "bad thing". My son spent six months in a halfway house where he was introduced to the 12 Steps. So the "bad thing" turned into a "good thing".
I am learning today that my life circumstances do not define me. Sometimes what appears to be a great challenge offers a great lesson. Sometimes it's just a great challenge. The lesson may just be about me learning to accept life on life's terms.
For me these life lessons are what the 12 and 12 calls "the joy of living". Another thing I've learned to do is to write a gratitude list for the very thing that I imagine is "bad". It helps me see the potential lesson or benefit.
In my 40 years of active addiction, I learned and practiced a lot of immature ways of dealing with life. I did whatever I felt like doing. I refused to accept challenges and I failed to grow up. It's tough to admit but in many ways I was a marginal person. Now in my mid-fifties, I've found a design for living that allows me to face life differently. I accept challenges as opportunities to grow closer to God. It's not easy growing up, and growing old at the same time, but it sure beats acting out lust.