The 10 Things

It is so important to realize that the quality of the choices we make today will be reflected in the quality of our lives tomorrow. It is my sincere hope that everyone who goes through this course not only will build a better life by locking onto their true values and gaining some life skills, but also will make some lasting friendships.

Donna Carter

10 Smart Things is a ten-part life management course for women designed to help them take the first steps on their spiritual journey. The course materials include the following:

  • The book, entitled 10 Smart Things Women Can Do to Build a Better Life, stands alone for individual reading or serves as a leader’s guide for group study;
  • Participant’s Guide, to be used by each small group member; and
  • A set of teaching DVDs

Each of the ten sessions involves two elements. The first is a 15-20 minute teaching time on DVD which is composed of:

  • Research from various experts
  • Wisdom gathered from those with life experience
  • Some of what the Bible has to say about the subject at hand

The second element of each session is a small-group discussion time. Ideally this will be approximately one hour long. During this time a facilitator will ask the questions included at the end of each chapter of the book (see a sample preview chapter and questions). These questions are designed to give everyone an opportunity to think through and express their perspective. Each member should have the chance to contribute, but no one should be put on the spot. We strongly encourage you to provide each participant with her own copy of the 10 Smart Things Participant’s Guide, which includes an outline of each talk and the scriptures used in each session. This tool helps group members remember the talk and any questions they may have related to it. That in turn will help them to participate in the discussion following the viewing of the DVD.

The 10 Things

#1 – MAKE SPACE
How can I organize my life so that I have time, money and energy to focus on what’s important?

#2 – MANAGE EMOTION
How can I relate to people in a positive way even when they push my buttons?

#3 – CONCEDE CONTROL
How can I stop trying to control the universe?

#4 – LIVE GENEROUSLY
Why are giving people happier?

#5 – RESOLVE RELATIONSHIPS
How can I forgive someone who has gravely wounded me?

#6 – ACCEPT YOURSELF
How can I get free of all the lies that have contributed to a poor self-image?

#7 – CONQUER DISCONTENTMENT
How can I begin to appreciate what I have, instead of making myself miserable trying to keep up with the Joneses?

#8 – OFFLOAD STRESS
How can I cope with the pressure life brings and the stress it generates?

#9 – PLUG IN
How can I connect to people and to God so that I am known, loved and accepted for who I really am?

#10 – GRASP GRACE
What does God really want from me?

The Evolution of an Idea

Several years ago I was working with my sister Debbie who oversaw small groups for women at First Alliance Church in Calgary, Canada. Historically, the Tuesday-morning women’s program offered  in-depth Bible studies.  That was great, but Debbie and I felt that we were missing a great opportunity to meet the “felt need” of the women in our neighborhoods: the need to connect with other women.

We decided to offer a course that would appeal to women who did not profess a faith or attend church, offering practical skills for living and the opportunity to meet other women on a similar journey. Unable to find the type of course we wanted to offer, I set out to write one.

That course, known then as 10 Smart Things Women Do to Enrich Their Lives, was very successful in bringing women into the church that never would have come otherwise. They came because every session stood alone so they didn’t have to commit themselves to a whole course. They came because they were learning practical life skills. They stayed because they found community. Many found faith and learned to apply it to everyday life.

Since those days, 10 Smart Things has made it’s way around the world. It is helping women build better lives across North America, It has shown up in Islamic, Communist, and third world countries as well as U.S. military bases.

 

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The 10 Things

The 10 Things