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Daniel Poncedeleon suffered a brain injury and still reached his goal. What’s your excuse?

When you find yourself being knocked down by a curveball of life, the key is to never lose sight of your goals.

Pro baseball player Daniel Poncedeleon knows this better than anyone.

He remembers the pit of fear that swelled in his stomach the moment the pitch left his hands during a minor-league game on May 9th, 2017. The ball stayed center-cut as Iowa’s Victor Caratini fired the ball straight back to where it came from. The ball struck Poncedeleon straight in the head, knocking the right-hander to the ground.

The up-and-coming baseball star’s path to the Major Leagues came to a sudden halt as he underwent emergency brain surgery for his skull fracture and epidural hematoma. Poncedeleon had to wait and recover, while watching several of his teammates move up to the Majors.

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On July 23, after a year of recovering, the 26-year-old made his MLB debut for the St. Louis Cardinals and showed the world what a true comeback looks like. After months of healing and painful physical therapy, Poncedeleon tossed 7 no-hit innings against the Cincinnati Reds in his first game back. Even though the Reds won the game, headlines flashed Poncedeleon’s name and the story of his incredible journey to the major leagues.

Poncedeleon’s goal-addicted mindset was contagious for his teammates, and there’s no doubt he’s already making an impact on his team during his first year in the majors.

I want you to think about a goal you have in front of you right now. How do you feel about this goal? You might have a goal you’re feeling excited about, or you might feel overwhelmed by leashes keeping you from reaching it.

FPG’s Goal Addiction program is built to un-clutter your goal-setting by answering 4 questions that will absolutely changed your life. The minute you start with us, you’ll watch your results soar. Just like Poncedeleon.

1. What do I want by when?

The what is the goal you are setting, and provides the foundation of the Goal Addiction program. Poncedeleon’s goal was to play baseball in the major league by 2018. He knew what he wanted, and set a date so that he could spend each day moving one step closer to that goal.

2. Why do I want it?

The why is the fuel for your what. The why is the compelling vision behind your goal. It’s the emotional underpinning. Poncedeleon’s lifelong dream was to play major league baseball. He pushed himself to heal and get better every day which fueled his fire to achieve his goal.

3. How do I get there?

The how is the actionable process, pattern, and strategy you put in place to achieve your goal. This is the road map telling you how you are going to reach your goal. Poncedeleon knew after his injury there would be a long recovery ahead, but he also knew that by sticking to his recovery plan and meeting those miles would lead him to his goal.

4. Who do I need help from?

The who is all about discovering whose help you need to achieve your goal. Poncedeleon had a team of doctors, family, and friends all pushing him to keep moving forward after his injury. The positive support from his loved ones and care team played a huge role in leading him to Monday night’s incredible game.

I want you to focus on asking yourself these four questions each time you set a goal. Decide to take control of your life the same way Daniel Poncedeleon did. Be a victor, not a victim.

After his year-long recovery and finally being cleared to play baseball again, Daniel Poncedeleon returned to the mound to face hitters for the first time and made one request to the players stepping into the batter’s box that day.

“Swing as hard as you can. Don’t be scared to hit me.”

Poncedeleon knew the only way to move forward with his goal of reaching the major leagues, was to refuse to fear failure. He refused to fear the ball that nearly killed him. He refused to give up on his dream of becoming an MLB player. He instead leveraged the successes and failures of his past and propelled himself towards his goal.

I know you can turn your past from an anchor into a springboard by following these 2 steps:

  1. Use your successes as a power source by remembering what made you successful before, then apply those strengths to your current goals.
  2. Use your failures and setbacks as a power source by making them the fuel for your improvement.

I challenge you to take a page from Poncedeleon’s book. Use your setbacks as fuel for a better future. Don’t dwell on setbacks; celebrate them. Leverage your successes and failures to achieve your goals.

Let every single one of life’s pitches drive you to becoming a better version of you.

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