Tag Archives: gratitude

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. 

Speaks To Me Sunday #74

15 Jan

Gratitude means letting go of what you thought you should have so that you can celebrate all you do have. 

I feel blessed to have so much to be thankful for! Sometimes I get caught up in “future thinking” and wishing I had more. But if I am honest, I have enough. And choosing to be grateful for what I have makes it mean infintely more.

2017 will officially be my year of gratitude. I want to focus my heart and mind on being thankful for all God has given me… for my family, friends, cats, community, health, home, belongings, jobs, dreams, experiences, opportunities, and all the other special things that make up my life.  I have so much more than enough!  So I will practice gratitude. And I do think it is a practice – sometimes it will take a little effort. Ultimately, I believe it will make me more positive and productive, less anxious, a better friend, and a happier person. 

Cheers to a grateful heart in 2017! What are you practicing this year?!

Speaks To Me Sunday #68

16 Oct

I don’t even know what to say. 

I am so thankful for the love of my mom and dad. I am so grateful God gave me two amazing humans who have dedicated so much of their lives to my wellbeing and happiness. Even now when I’m so many miles away – they are still ere for me. When I really stop and think of it, I am overwhelmed. And completely humbled. I am so loved. 

Hey Mom and Dad, thank you. From the bottom of my heart,  I love you too! 

(Also, aren’t handwritten cards the best?)


Favorite Five Friday (146th Edition)

20 May

Hello Friday! How was your week? Mine was exactly what I needed…


1.  For the first time in a year, I got to go home! My family has come to visit us here in California, but I hadn’t been to Utah since December of 2014 (even typing that makes me cringe). It was far, far too long. I’m so happy we had the opportunity to spend a week kicking back in Salt Lake City with family and friends. Sometimes you really do just need to get out of town. It was wonderful to just be somewhere else for a bit… It was even more wonderful that that somewhere else was home.

2.  One of the best parts of going home is the opportunity to see the small handful of friends that I know will always be in my life. Some of them have stuck by me since the 7th grade! We’ve been through so much together (being a teenager is a tough time, ya know?), and they will forever hold a place in my heart. We are all so different now… Families, careers, homes, and adventures… But we always find our way back to each other. I couldn’t be more thankful for them. (I wish I had gotten pictures with everyone I saw!!)

3.  Speaking of those friends… This year is my ten year high school reunion. Insane. I can’t believe it. I won’t be making it home for the reunion this summer, but it was nice to meet up with my buddies and have my own mini reunions. You certainly realize who is important in your life after so many years away! Part of me wishes I could go to the reunion. There are a few people I would certainly love to see again, but I’m glad social media helps us stay connected. Happy Ten Years, Cottonwood Class of 2006! May the next ten be your best yet.

4.  It goes without saying that a trip home means family time. I’m so lucky to have such a great one! We got to share meals, see movies, reminisce and catch up. I will treasure doing all the “normal stuff” (shopping, driving around, watching TV, waking up in the same house, etc.) that I so rarely get to do with my parents anymore, every conversation with my grandma, aunt, and cousin, and playing with my beautiful niece. I miss them already.

5.  I might have buried the lead… But I was saving the best for last! The whole reason we went to Salt Lake was to be there for my brother as he married an amazing  woman! I am so proud of my big brother and the man he has become. He has fought so hard to create the awesome life he is now living. It was truly a blessing to be there and be a part of Jeremy and Sabrina’s big day. So much joy! I couldn’t be happier for my brother and my new sister!

I’d call that a good week! I hope yours was excellent too.

Happy Friday! 


Speaks To Me Sunday #44

20 Mar

Lately it seems like there have been a lot of things to be stressed about. Dwelling on it makes me feel like im drowning in anxiety. And I am someone who is prone to worry as it is. 

The best salve I have found is gratitude. If I can stop and choose to look at all the things I’m grateful for, every person who helped when things got tough, every lesson learned from hardship… It makes every day that much brighter, that much easier. 

I have been overwhelmed by gratitude these last couple of days. And it truly has interrupted my anxiety. It’s amazing what a change of perspective can do. 

Give it a shot! What are you grateful for? 

Comment below or find me 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!

Speaks To Me Sunday #30

29 Nov

It’s so much easier to feel happy and grateful when you are actively thinking about what you are thankful for. I love Thanksgiving because it is a perfect reminder to focus on gratitude. Every year I wonder why should it stop there… At a day or a weekend? Why shouldn’t we fix our minds and hearts on all the wonderful things we have every day of the year? When I really stop and think about it… Man, I have so much to be thankful for. I feel like I truly do have it all. That change in perspective is everything. 

What are you grateful for? Shout it out! 

Twitter and Instagram: @JoannaHackman. #SpeaksToMeSunday

Speaks To Me Sunday #27

1 Nov

Normally I am sad to see October go, but this year I am choosing to focus on gratitude for the month of November. That means there is no time to waste being sad! 😉 

There is so much to be thankful for! I am a healthy woman with a wonderful family. I have never had to go without. I have food in my fridge and warm water for my shower. I have a job and money in my bank account. I have a dream that I have never felt like I had to give up. 

There are so many things – big and small – to feel gratitude for. It’s too easy to take it for granted. I hope focusing on gratitude brings on a multitude of miracles for you and for me! 

What are you grateful for?! 

Let’s talk about it. Comment. Twitter and Instagram – @JoannaHackman. ❤️

Favorite Five Friday (107th Edition) 

10 Apr

Hey! It’s Friday! That is so worth getting excited about. Here’s a look at my week…


1.  This weeks Speaks To Me Sunday was pretty special as it was Easter Sunday. He is Risen! I hope you celebrated.


2.  We had to work on Easter, but at least we got to spend the day together as buddies!


3.  As a part of my improv training, I have to go improv shows. Poor me, right? 😉 It is such a good time! This week Dan and I doubled with our besties to go see a show. I picked a show hosted by my improv teacher and her husband. (Fun to see other couples who also work together.) It was a riot! I loved getting to watch the things I’m learning in action. I’m so glad I took this leap.

4.  I love the TimeHop app. I’m sure I’ve gushed about it before. It’s so fun to see old photos and posts pop up every day. Well, this week TimeHop showed me the post I wrote on Gratitude to celebrate 100 posts here on The Art of Acting Up. I’m still so grateful. Thank you for reading.

5.  The El Capitan does a “Throwback Thursday” where they show Classic Disney films. About a month ago we saw that they were going to be showing Robin Hood, and I knew we had to go! We got our tickets, and we’ve been anxiously waiting. Last night the wait was over! We got free popcorn and drinks, great seats, and laughed a ridiculous amount at one of our childhood favorites. It was a fantastic evening, and we can’t wait to go again!


Happy Friday, y’all! 

Favorite Five Friday (82nd Edition)

11 Sep

Friday has almost come and gone, but there’s still time to sneak in a little…



1.  One of the coolest kids I know turned four, and I got to celebrate with him! We had a great time partying like pirates at Phin’s birthday party this week. Being a big kid is fun!


2.  I have spent most of the last week training Universal’s latest class of Tour Guides, and it has been a really neat experience. You all know that I love my job… seeing other people fall in love with it is awesome. I have really enjoyed watching to each of these Guides in Training as they learn the information, put their tour together, and put their own personal stamp on it. I can remember exactly what it was like to be in their position – the challenges and the excitement. Getting to be a mentor and a source of encouragement has been the highlight of my week. I am wishing them all luck as they get ready to test next week!


3.  There has been a Gratitude Challenge making its way around Facebook, and I was asked to join in this week. Basically, the challenge lasts five days, and each day you have to share three things you are grateful for and then challenge three more friends. Seeing my news feed flooded with so much positivity and thankfulness has been such a breath of fresh air. We can all get so caught up in complaining about the things that don’t go our way. It’s easy to forget all of the beautiful things that exist in our lives. There is so much to be grateful for.

4.  Speaking of gratitude, the 13th anniversary of the attacks on 9/11 was this week, and every where I turned people were sharing their stories, lifting each other up, and stopping to remember those we lost. I am so thankful for the people who gave their lives and those that still fight to keep us safe. I can’t believe it’s been 13 years. I will never forget where I was when I heard the news, the emotions it made me feel, how it changed me. I will always remember 9/11 as the day I truly discovered what it meant to be proud to be an American. We will never forget.

5.  This was particularly meaningful to me this week. I think it might be my new mantra… I need a theme song… 😉



Happy Friday, lovely people! Until next time!