Before this 31-day plan became a lifestyle, I first had to remove the tumors of self-gratification and hubris (trust me, the attitude ruling my life in the old days was all about "what's in it for me?").

Now that you have a glimpse into your own plan, a fair warning: It's not about you. It took years for me to develop the understanding that life is really about giving, service, and meaningful relationships.

If you're still with me, these things have reshaped my path as entrepreneur, happy husband, proud father, and community leader. Many can be practiced in minutes per day. Others will require some courage and stretching. Use this to acclimate yourself to a life of happiness and success.

Your 31-Day Personal Development Plan

Day 1: Do something for someone else.

Do a "five-minute favor" for someone. Five-minute favors are selfless giving acts, without asking for anything in return from the people that you help. Examples of five-minute favors include: sharing knowledge, making an introduction, serving as a reference for a person, product, or service, or recommending someone on LinkedIn, Yelp, or another social place.

Day 2: Share your positive experiences with friends and family and watch your joy increase.

Studies published in BPS Research have found that sharing the good things that happen in your life is the way to happiness. In one study, participants that journaled and shared positive experiences with another person at least twice a week were more satisfied with life.

Day 3: Stop striving to achieve.

We all have a tendency to work too much, lose our balance, and, ultimately, our joy in life. It's the unhealthy feeling that if we don't do something productive every day, we've somehow failed. So allow your perfectionism to rest. Slow down, and know that life is OK the way it is, right at this minute. As you eliminate the need to strive and be perfect, surrender to the universe. You'll begin to appreciate and focus on other, neglected priorities that bring you joy.

Day 4: Put yourself in someone else's shoes.

Empathy and compassion are things you can develop, and it starts with thinking about other people's circumstances, understanding their pains and frustrations, and knowing that those emotions are every bit as real as our own. This helps you develop perspective, and opens you up to helping others, which also enhances your sense of gratitude.

Day 5: Discover your purpose and enjoy the journey.

Remind yourself frequently that the purpose of your life is not to work 10 hours per day, five days per week for 30 years, then retire to a golf course in Florida. Your true purpose should be to discover your calling in life, basking in the joy of the journey along the way, one step at a time. In the end, your legacy is left to these two questions:

What impact did I make on the lives of others?

Who did I serve and make better?

Day 6: Stop getting the attention and focus it on other people.

There's something magical that happens when we let other people have the glory. Reading this may bruise your ego, but when we shine the spotlight on someone else and let that person be seen, heard, respected, and considered special--it becomes enjoyable to do so, and gives us a peaceful and quiet confidence.

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