Who is it?
Hello, it's me, Dorice Horenstein.
Thank you for inviting me in.
I know I am not your friend yet,
but I want you to know me.
Let’s prepare a cup of tea, or coffee
(I am personally more of a coffee person),
and let me share who I am and why I do what I do.
I came to America from Israel at the age of twenty-one. I grew up in a wonderful family, with four other siblings and two terrific parents. We were not financially wealthy. I remember my mom worked three jobs at times just to keep the family afloat while my dad built homes as a contractor.
I remember wearing hand-me-down clothes (which, by the way, I love doing with my girlfriends nowadays). I shared one room with my three sisters growing up, and I fondly recall talking late into the night, sharing secrets, crushes on boys, and heart-wrenching love stories that went as quickly as they came. This sisterly intimacy affected how bonded we became, and there is not a week that goes by now without a phone call to my siblings or my parents. This is what I value today in friendships, relationships, and work places— the shared bond, value system, the human need to have positive and healthy relationships that bond us together.
I have always loved and felt proud of my homeland, Israel. At the age of eighteen, I enrolled in the army service. I was serving in the Israeli army when I met my husband. It was not love at first sight, but at second sight, as we often joke. Looking back at that time period, I can wholeheartedly say that my role in the army solidified who the young girl from a small town in central Israel would become. I was in a position to influence others, to support, to teach, to educate-to inspire those who are slightly younger than I was. Through my service, I began to understand the complex fabric of the different personalities around me.
I learned what makes a leader and what causes a leader to stay a leader. I experienced the great feelings of teamwork and togetherness, and I also saw the results and consequences of being alone and rejected from the group.
Today, I am the product of the experiences of that young soldier from decades ago. Shortly after I arrived in America, with only a suitcase and $600 to my name (and with no coat in the middle of December in Portland, Oregon), it was obvious to me that I would need to do something related to my background. I earned my bachelor’s degree in English literature because I love languages, and a certification to teach English as a second language. Despite this, I actually began my professional career by teaching Hebrew and all aspects of Judaism to both children and adults. That love and knowledge of the Hebrew language is what I often speak about when I am invited to different groups, highlighting relationships and concepts through the Jewish/Hebrew lens.
But more on that later…
One of the accomplishments I am most proud of is that I have three wonderful children and a supportive spouse. My husband and I raised our children (who are now more adults than children) to become independent, healthy, and contributing members of the communities in which they all live.
For the last sixteen years, I worked as an education director at a synagogue. This experience provided me with fertile ground to explore issues of ethics and morality with blossoming teenagers prior to their Bar/Bat Mitzvahs as well as with their parents and other adults. I have taught classes and led group discussions about various works by world renowned Jewish thinkers. They have been my mentors who “visited me” at the Shabbat table with my children and husband, a table we often shared with dear family and friends.
Living in America, I have been privileged to learn from forward thinkers such as Oprah Winfrey, Gabrielle Bernstein, Brené Brown, and so many other spiritual teachers and mentors. I treasure the feeling that I stand on shoulders of giants—Jews, as well non-Jews. All of these individuals contributed to who Dorice Horenstein is.
To get to where I am now, I had to sit still and listen to my inner voice. To my conscience. And I needed to hear where I should go, what my compass should be. How I will direct my path.
You see, all I knew was to teach those who came to me, who entered the physical space I was in, the synagogue. What I discovered is that I wanted the world to be my classroom. I wanted to get to know YOU. Yes…you! So I looked at the wisdom of my native tongue to shed light, to help me.
And I found it! In Hebrew the word “conscience” is Matzpoon. And the word for “compass” is matzpen. Do you hear how similar they sound? Well, if they sound similarly, they are connected! For real! If I just listened to my inner wisdom, my conscience, I will now where my compass is leading me, the direction I need to go.
I listened. And now I am here. A place where the world is my classroom. Where I meet, teach, and inspire people I would have never met in my previous position. Now I am on my own. And I am here to serve you. I have been so lucky to be invited already to several organizations (religious and secular, Jewish and non-Jewish) to inspire, motivate and re-energize!
I transfer the love of all that I know to be true. I talk about relationships, starting with the most important one—the relationship with yourself. YOU ARE CRUCIAL TO YOUR OWN SUCCESS!
And of course—I wrote a book all about it. It is called Moments of the Heart, Four Relationships Everyone Should Have to Live Wholeheartedly. It is really good! You can read more about it under the Book tab.
And so, with all that, I come to today—with a new suitcase this time—this one full of advice from what I have learned by watching, doing, reading, and hearing. My suitcase full of experiences is now my gift to you.
And the good news is that there is no lock on this suitcase—it is already open.
I am humbly offering myself to inspire and influence you with my stories and my truth. And I hope you will reach out to me so I can meet the magnificent person that is you.