Tag Archives: dreams

Speaks To Me Sunday #80

9 Jul

Totally guilty of trying to solve my life. I constant find myself wanting to cross EVERYTHING off of my To-Do List in one day. 

But if I cross it all off… what’s left to do? What life is there left to live? I don’t have to solve every problem and conquer every obstacle right this very minute. I don’t have to have everything planned out and perfectly pieced together.

What if I could stop looking at my life as something to solve and instead view it as a pile (an organized one 😉) of wonderful and good things. What if I cared for and nurtured those good things? What if my life grew into something beautiful? 

I love a good To-Do list as much as the next Type-A girl. But even I have to admit that a Christmas-Morning-like pile of all the wonderful things in my life is so much more fulfilling than a crumpled up list of crossed off (or ya know… rewritten again and again) problems and worries.

So, one at a time. I want to build my pile of good things. Now I just have to decide what will I add to the pile first. 

The Last Days

11 Feb

These are the last days. 

The last days I will be a Tour Guide, an Angeleno, a California Girl.

Saying goodbye is hard. It’s bittersweet at best. When you know you are about to leave, it’s like putting on rose colored glasses. Everything is amazing again. It’s fresh, new. Just like it was the day you unpacked your dreams and the Uhaul. 

We still stand by our reasons for leaving Los Angeles behind, but I am thankful for these last days. They have given me the ability to remember all this city has to offer with clear eyes and an open heart. 

We put together an LA Bucket List of all we wanted to do, see, eat, and experience before we said goodbye. I have loved exploring and truly enjoying the beauty of the mountains, the ocean, the thriving and active city. I have found joy in being at work, spending time with my co-workers, sharing the magic of making movies with people from all over the world. I have cherished every moment with my beloved LA family – the laughter, the hugs, even the tears. 

The last days have solidified just how wonderful the past five years have been and how thankful I am for the chapter we are now closing. 

It’s too easy to forget what life can really be. I get caught up in routine, making in through the day, and just living life. We should all get to live like it’s the last days. Seeing more clearly, smiling bigger, loving harder, breathing it all in… 

Here’s to living in the last days. 

And let’s be honest… I’ll always be a California Girl. ❤

Speaks To Me Sunday #69

6 Nov

That is something we can all be thankful for! 

My dreams are ever-changing. Constantly expanding and shifting as my experiences and desires affect my heart. It’s so exciting to look back on where I have been and the dreams that have brought me to where I am.

I am finding myself in another state of growing, changing, living where I am setting new goals and dreams. It can be scary, but honestly, I am mostly feeling  excited.

I plan to never forget how to pursue something new and thrilling. This is what makes life worth living. 

Too Long To-Do Lists (101 in 1001)

18 May

Anyone remember 101 in 1001?

It was a challenge to complete 101 specific and doable tasks in 1001 days. I hopped right on board when I read about it because I love a good list almost as much as I love crossing things off of it. So, I made this list of all lists… and I got excited about it! Then I forgot about it. Then I remembered and got a few things done. Then I spaced again. Then I conquered a few more things. Then it stressed me out. Then I just kind of let it go, sparing the occasional thought for my lonely list.

I was meant to have finished my 101 in 1001 last December. And I’ll be honest, I didn’t get to cross everything off everything on my list. At first I was disappointed. I felt like I should write a post about it (closure, ya know?), but I was embarrassed that I did not defeat this project. I hate to fail.

Well, I finally went back to look at this insane list, and I realized there were somethings I didn’t even care so much about… Did I actually want to do a Mud Run? Or keep reading Jane Austen novels after I found out I wasn’t a huge fan? Was I going to go back to writing articles for write.com after three years? No! Now, to be fair, I did accomplish a lot of the things on my list! I signed with an agent, I got my passport and went to Europe, I did fun things with my husband, I got a cat… I got two! These have been wonderful moments and memories in my life. Not just things to cross off a list.

So, ultimately I realized… one GIANT list of things I want to do doesn’t work for me. It’s like too much going on in my brain. A short daily list of tasks to take care of works much better for me. The rest of it… traveling, events, family stuff, dreams, ideas… those things don’t belong on a to-do list. Those are for me to journal about at length, to share with loved ones,  to entrust to God, to build in my own time.

I might have “failed.” But it was the best thing that could have happened. I certainly learned a lot! Going back through the list, I got to reflect on all I’ve done for the last few years and truly feel proud. I found out that sometimes I assign myself tasks just to be busy – not because I actually want to do them. Or that our desires do change from year to year. I also got to feel a jolt of excitement about some things I still want to accomplish… writing a children’s book, working on our finances, sending thank you’s to important people in my life, taking a hot air balloon ride! There is so much life to be lived – especially when I’m not concentrating on crossing all of these spectacular moments off a list.

I’m posting my 101 in 1001 below for you to see! There’s a little commentary in red and asterisks by the items I found that were still important to me.


My 101 in 1001:

Act. (1-14)

  • Find representation  (Step 1: start looking) (Step 2: Theatrical Representation)
    • Signed with Element Talent Agency (Commerical Representation) 3/28/13
    • Signed with HTG Artists 11/22/13
    • Signed with Avalon Artists Group in March of 2015
  • Land a speaking role on TV or in a film… did this a few months later!
  • Be in a musical again (As I don’t have complete control over this — I will just do all I can to make it happen!) ***
  • Watch all of AFI’s top 100 movies… maybe not alllll of them.
  • Discover my “type” or “brand”
  • Research 20 actors (10/20) ***
  • Research 10 directors (10) ***
  • Research 10 writers (10) ***
  • Start studying at a studio
  • Take an improv class
  • Take a voice over class ***
  • Start/join a script reading group
  • Find 10 free acting workshops/classes and go to them (10/10)
  • Find 5 new monologues (2/5) … Or a whole bunch of awesome scenes. You need those more.

Create. (15-26)

  • Try something new thing each week for 3 months (Pinterest, DIY, recipe, work out, etc.) (12/12)
  • Blog about the new thing I tried (3/3)
  • Get back into music (learn to read it, take lessons, etc.)
  • Take an art class of some kind
  • Take a photography class (or have your friend teach you to be her assistant at a wedding!)
  • Learn to use Photoshop (quick lesson with Leah/using other apps too)
  • Make a T-shirt quilt
  • Write a children’s book/story ***
  • Come up with a solid idea for a YouTube channel (then decide if I want to create it)
  • Create some kind of art to hang above our bed  (We moved and were able to use our canvas wedding pictures)
  • Sew something using a pattern
  • Make 5 homemade gifts (cards) (5/5) (Changed to cards because I found it to be a better fit!)
Work It Out. (27-33)
  • Work out at least 3 times a week for 3 months (12/12 weeks)
  • Find a sport/physical activity I enjoy (outside of basic working out)  I accidentally began enjoying hiking!
  • Do that activity at least once a month for 6 months (6/6)
  • Work on flexibility with yoga  2 times a week for a month (8/8)
  • Take a dance class
  • Hike to the Hollywood sign (6/22/13)
  • Compete in a mud run… really? 
Learn. (34-39)
  • Learn 5 important things about politics (5) *** (I guess this would come in handy.)
  • Relearn all 50 state Capitals (that’s right)
  • Learn some new things about the decades of the 1900’s — Style, culture, events, people.  (00’s, 10’s, 20’s, 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s, 90’s)
  • Pick 5 countries to research and learn about (5)
  • Pick 5 significant historical events to research and learn about (5)
  • Learn conversational Spanish… or a little French, instead!
Get It Done. (40-47)
  • Get my California license
  • Get a new passport
  • Create a workable budget and stick to it ***
  • Set up an IRA/retirement fund ***
  • Get a life insurance policy
  • Buy my domain name and make my blog my website ***and get an acting website!
  • Save up and purchase a headboard ***
  • Declutter and downsize household items

Positive Growth. (48-51)

  • Say 2 positive things for every negative comment for a week (7)
  • Quiet time/devotional every day for a month (30/30)
  • Memorize 30 verses (2/30) ***
  • Get a plant of some kind (3/14/13) and keep it alive for at least 3 months (3/3)

Food. (52-57)

  • Take a cooking class
  • Make a cake from scratch
  • Successful meal planning for a month
  • Find recipes for 5 healthy treats (5) ***
  • Make cookies from scratch
  • Grow something edible

Go Without. (58-62)

  • Don’t eat fast food for a month (30/30)
  • Go meatless 1 day a week for a month (1/5)… or not?
  • Don’t eat sweets for a month (18/30: made it 18 days and then took an impromptu vacation.) (Started over: 35/30)
  • Go a month without buying anything new (Check this out: Could You Go a Year Without Buying Anything New?) (31/30) January 2015
  • Get up by 8:00 AM for a month (30/30)


  • Travel to Europe (Anywhere really, but specifically: England, France, Ireland, Italy, Greece)
  • Go on a hot air balloon ride ***
  • Finish visiting all 50 states (Maine, Wisconsin) ***
  • Drive down the PCH to San Diego (6/30/13)
  • Save up for a real vacation (Maybe Hawaii? Or Europe trip?)
  • Go camping
Get Dolled Up. (69-73)
  • Learn more about fashion/style and my own preferences… think I got it.
  • Learn to braid my own hair
  • Add more colors and diverse styles to my wardrobe (10/10 items)
  • Try a new make-up look once a week for a month (5/5)
  • Try a new hairstyle once a week for a month (5/5)
Spread Love. (74-80)
  • Send out Christmas cards
  • Get involved in community service
  • Send 50 handwritten notes/letters (50/50)
  • Do 10 random acts of kindness for strangers (10) ***
  • Re-purpose or donate all unwanted clothing
  • Send 5 Thank You cards to people who have impacted my life (5) ***
  • Donate blood
Read and Write. (81-92)
  • Update my blog weekly
  • Keep up with my calendar journal for the rest of 2013
  • Read and review 1 book a month for 6 months (3/6)
  • Read at least 3 Jane Austen novels (2/3)… or find out you don’t actually like Jane Austen very much.
  • Write a letter to myself on my golden (26th) birthday to open in 10 years
  • Start/join a book club
  • Read 30 new books (30/30)
  • Write 25 articles in a week for write.com… or find out you don’t want to.
  • Read at least 3 Shakespeare plays I’ve never read (3)
  • Read at least 5 screenplays (5)
  • Read at least 5 plays (5)
  • Answer the 50 Questions That Will Free Your Mind
For Fun. (93-101)
  • Go to a live taping of something
  • Date my husband (50/50)
  • Try 10 new restaurants in L.A. (10/10)
  • Get a cat
  • See a movie at the El Capitan
  • Go to Rodeo Drive with my mom
  • Go to Neil Patrick Harris’ Haunted Play… why did it close?! 😦
  • Attend a movie premiere (Fast & Furious 6 on 5/21/13)
  • Create a new 101 in 1001… NAH!

Cheers to trying new things, failing big time, short to-do lists, and living beautiful, unplanned moments!

Speaks To Me Sunday #46

10 Apr

This was just too perfect for the week I just had. 

It’s taking a little time to get back to real life after the excitement of The grand opening of The Wizarding World here in Hollywood. But I think the time has come to take Professor Dunbledore’s words to heart. It’s time to live. 

But that doesn’t mean living isn’t just as exciting! Sometimes life exceeds out wildest dreams… Isn’t that amazing? I can’t wait to see where this precious life leads me. 

What about you? How does your real life exceed your dreams?

Comment below or reach out on Twitter or Instagram: @JoannaHackman


Favorite Five Friday (139th Edition)

18 Mar

 Friday is here! Warning, this post is a little sappy, but aren’t we all sometimes? Here’s my favorites for the week…


1.  As a little girl I lived for our family trips to Disneyland. It’s pretty much a dream come true to live so close to The Happiest Place on Earth. Being an annual passholder in one of my favorite things. It’s so wonderful to plan out Disney days with friends. It’s equally as wonderful to be able to get up and decide I think I’ll go to Disneyland today. That’s what Dan and I did this week, and it was exactly what we needed. An easy going time with a little magic. I love being married to someone who craves that childlike wonder as much as I do.

2.  I have been feeling super grateful lately. I am so blessed by the people in my life. My village. The friends spread out across the country that always seem to reach out exactly when I need it. The family who supports me whole heartedly. The close knit group of pals I spend my time with here in L.A. The fabulous group of women who lift me up and help me grow on a daily basis. I am truly humbled and grateful for these beautiful people.

3.  I’m also grateful for the dreaming Dan and I have been doing this week. We all have a picture of what our lives should be, but sometimes it doesn’t end up that way. And if we aren’t careful, we might miss the fact that what we have is even better. So, we are paying attention. We are creating a new picture. A picture that includes living our dreams, doing what we love on a daily basis, traveling this world, sharing our gifts, spreading God’s love, investing time in our friendships, loving on and growing our family. I feel excited to color outside the lines and create something completely ours.

4.  The most important tool an actor has is their headshot. It’s your calling card, your opportunity for a casting director to see you and want to learn more. You need a brilliant headshot! Well, I’m pretty sure that Kat Tuohy delivered that for me. I adore all of my new pictures, and I have no idea how I will choose which ones to use. I cannot wait to put these up on all my casting websites. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Kat. You are talented, kind, gracious, and brilliant. Thank you! (Go check Her out, people!)


5.  Cat pictures!  

Have a gorgeous weekend! Go color outside the lines.

Happy Friday!

Favorite Five Friday (136th Edition)

19 Feb

Friday and I’m feeling good! Actually, I’ve barely known what day it was this week. So, Friday and it’s quite a surprise. 😉 Here’s what’s goin’ on…


1. It’s Oscar Season! Some of the most talented folks I know got together and put all the Best Picture Nominees to music. This might sound familiar because it’s our third year running. Every time things get a little crazy, but the amazing minds behind the scenes always come through in the end. It was a dream come true to play one of my favorite actresses, Rachel McAdams, for her role in Spotlight. So, I guess I’m playing Rachel McAdams playing Sacha Pfeiffer. That’s complicated – ha! Anyway, it was fantastic. The finished product is pretty great. Please check it out and share!

2. Valentine’s Day is not exactly our thing. #OhThoseHackmans aren’t necessarily opposed. We just don’t feel like it has to be celebrated to the extreme. Not to mention, you think of getting flowers for the occasion, and our kitties have made that pretty much impossible. (They’re naughty). But this Valentine’s Day was perfect. Dan worked in the morning so I got a little me time… So needed! I got to workout, read, watch some shows, do some cleaning. It was all pretty refreshing. That afternoon I was off to meet Dan at Universal. The Wizarding Worls of Harry Potter does not officially open until April 7th. However, there have been sporadic tech rehearsals happening for this themed land. No guarantees, just the possibility of a little magic. Well, that’s exactly what we got. As soon as we entered the gates, I started to cry. It was everything you want it to be and more. We shopped at Honeydukes, stopped by the Owlery, peeked into Ollivander’s, strolled the streets with mugs of frozen Butterbeer, and stopped by the Three Broomsticks for some delicious English Fare. We also rode a sweet little coaster called Flight of the Hippogriff, and we explored Hogwarts Castle as we waited for our turn on Harry Potter and The Forbidden Journey – which might be the most incredible ride I have ever been on.  I cannot get over just how immersive this world is. It was hard to believe we were still at Universal when we left Hogsmeade behind. I am still blown away by this wonderful experience. I can’t wait to go back – there is still so much wonder to find.

 3. New hair means new headshots! I had a blast getting some great looks with Kat Tuohy. She’s an awesome photographer with an ability to set you at ease and make you laugh. I love the shooting environment she sets up. You can’t beat natural lighting in Santa Monica. I’m still working with my agent to pick some official shots, but here’s a few favorites. 

4. Guys. The third book in the Red Rising trilogy is out, and it rocked my world. For the second year in a row we went to Book Soup to meet the author, Pierce Brown, and have him sign our copy of Morning Star. Get this, he is so awesome that he remembered us. And he signed out book to “Oh Those Hackmans.” Love that guy. Love his stories. Love that we now have a signed copy of each of his books. Such a nerd, such a Fangirl. Morning Star was the perfect end to Darrow’s story. No details, no spoilers… The book is too new. But read it. I’m already itching to begin again.

 5.  Jimmy Fallon is back in Los Angeles!! I love that he’s made this a yearly thing. We got lucky again this year, and ended up with tickets to the show. We saw JLo and Jay Leno – saying their names out loud together makes me laugh. Snoop was supposed to be there, but apparently got stuck on the 405 and never showed up. L.A. is a crazy place, y’all. Especially when it rains. Jimmy handled the whole thing like a total pro – never missed a beat. He was as kind and charming as you’d hope. Man, I love that guy. Watch The Tonight Show… It’s awesome. And maybe one day you’ll see one of us up there with Jimmy Fallon. 😊


I hadn’t realized what an awesome week I had until I wrote this. And that’s exactly why I have this blog. Thankful for such a great week. 

Have a wonderful weekend!

Happy Friday!

Speaks To Me Sunday #37

31 Jan

We are one month into 2016. 

How did that happen?! 

I’m trying to refocus on what is most important and living for that every day. This is a pretty succinct list of what I’m going to work for this year. I plan to start focusing my attention on only the things that will bring me joy. 

Are you succeeding in your goals, living your dreams? Do you need to refocus? 

Let’s make 2016 the best year ever! 

We can do it together. Reach out. Comment below or find me on Twitter or Instagram: @JoannaHackman.


Speaks To Me Sunday #26

25 Oct

It feels appropriate that this is #26 since tomorrow is October 26th and my birthday. 😊

I have always loved my birthday. My family and friends have continuously made it such a special time for me, and I am so thankful. As I’ve gotten older, birthdays have become a little harder. Each year I feel like I’m losing time to do all that I want in this life. I look back proud at what I’ve done, but also yearning to have achieved more. It’s hard to feel excited about your birthday when you fear growing older. 

Well, I have no room for fear in my life anymore. I am blowing up the picture of what I thought my life should look like, and I am living the real thing. The life where I have a caring family, an awesome husband, fabulous friends, and adorable kitties. The life where I travel the world, work at an amazing job, and visit Disneyland at least once a month. The life where I get to audition, act, and play in the City of Angels. The life where I’m bravely reaching for my dreams.

I am living an amazing life. 

Thank you, God. 

It doesn’t matter how old you are. Your life is what you make it. How will you choose to live? 

Help me celebrate my birthday by talking with me! Twitter and Instagram @JoannaHackman


20 Mar

One year ago today I shared a list of goals I had made and a challenge I had accepted.  This project is called 101 in 1001.  (That link will take you to my list!)  Basically, I made a list of 101 goals that I wanted to complete in 1001 days.  Whew!  It was a lot of work to come up with that list, and so far it’s been a lot of fun checking things off of it.

So far I have completed 30 goals, made progress on 22 more items, and have at least touched something in every category.  I’m feeling more well-rounded already. 😉 Or not rounded since the category I have made the most progress in completing is the fitness one.  I think once you have already had success in an area it is easier to push yourself to reach those goals.  I guess that’s why marking off the fitness goals has happened fairly quickly.  There are a few categories I haven’t spent much time with.  Maybe I am intimidated by learning something new… or maybe I am scared of failing to reach my goals.  (Time to work on my political ignorance, get back into acting class, and learn conversational Spanish.) Well, you don’t know until you try, right?  So, that’s what I am going to be doing this next year of 101 in 1001.  I am going to risk it all, fail big, and feel alive.

Checking in on this year mark makes me proud of the things that I have accomplished.  Here are a few of my favorites:

  • Getting an agent
  • Working out consistently
  • Meal planning
  • Reading over 30 books
  • Volunteering
  • Giving up sweets for a month
  • (Re)learning all the state capitals
  • Going to my first movie premiere

It was a great reminder of just how much can happen in one year.  I picked March 20th because it’s the first day of spring.  New beginnings.  There is nothing like a fresh start.  So, starting now, year two of this crazy journey!  Time to fail, feel, and fly!  I can’t wait to see what happens.