I had the pleasure of presenting to teachers of a religious school at the denomination's campgrounds.

Between my Sunday evening keynote and my Monday afternoon seminar to the teachers, I invested some time in self-reflection.

Self-reflection focuses on looking inward—controlling passions, redirecting impulses, restraining oneself from temptation, monitoring one’s ego, assessing the balance between the amount of time devoted to entertainment and time devoted to learning, and other such things that will enable the individual to develop good character traits and become a good, contributing member of society.

Many of the early Americans—George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and of course Benjamin Franklin, to name but few—focused on what they could and would do to become better people.

Striving to improve oneself has long-been an American characteristic. As a youngster, my New Year's resolutions were always aimed at self-improvement. The recent reflection time I invested at the campground reminded me that self-reflection is an activity in which I should engage in more regularly—especially as it relates to being positive and the choices I make. See Part II of the teaching model.