Golden Hour + Gracious Redundancy + Kathy Dao = D’Amore Love

Being in the mental health profession can be taxing, but Kathy Dao considers it a privilege. In this post, Kathy shares her insight for staying motivated to provide kindness, patience, leveraging the Golden Hour and D’Amore love to her patients.


Q: D’Amore is not the easiest place to work! Why do you like working in mental health services? 

I enjoy working in mental health because it is not a physical, tangible thing that can be examined. To treat mental health is to look at the person in their entirety. Including working with the individual every step of the way. I get the privilege of getting to know each of our patients’ unique struggles and accomplishments. 


Q: What motivates you to care about the details?

The details are how we show love. Attention to the little things, such as having coffee already made in the morning, make our patients’ lives just a little bit easier during treatment. 


Q: What does gracious redundancy mean to you? Does that impact your GH?

Patients can be resistant to break out of old habits. Gracious redundancy is providing the kindness and patience to slowly integrate good habits and structure into our patients’ lives, no matter how many times it takes. This thought process continues into our golden hour. If we as staff are structured, prepared, and ready, we can provide this for our patients as well.


Q: How does all of this help you to start your day with a strong GH?

All these things remind me of how our patients’ success is contingent upon how well we do our part. I feel motivated to have a strong golden hour, as a strong golden hour sets the stage for everyone to do well.


Q: When you check items off on GH, how do you feel like your efforts impact patients?

Every task on our golden hour is meant to facilitate an easier transition to life in treatment for our patients. In fact, being thorough in every task allows our patients a higher likelihood of succeeding in the program.


Q: What advice do you have for other helping professionals who feel tired from shift work and complex patient needs?

Turn off the emails and separate yourself from your work. Furthermore, remember to make time for yourself and the people who care for you. Appreciate them, since these are the people who will be helping you through the days you just want to pull your hair out! Also, massages are a must.


Q: What legacy do you want to create for those struggling with addiction, grief or suicidal thoughts?

In all honesty, during these times there is a hopelessness that sometimes just can’t be lifted by encouraging words or a can-do attitude. For these people, I simply want to be remembered as someone who was the pillar of support, someone they can depend on in times when they feel isolated in their suffering.


Q: How would you describe the impact of an excellent GH on a patient?

Sometimes our patients want to reach out to us, but if we’re too busy or overwhelmed, they are forced to put their needs in the back seat. A good golden hour allows us to efficiently tackle the logistics so that we may better use our time to provide our patients with that one on one interaction they need. 


Healthcare professionals like Kathy Dao are critical to our patients’ success at D’Amore Healthcare. Through the compassionate and dignified treatment of others (Gracious Redundancy), self-efficacy and new healthy habits are built.

Thank you, Kathy, for being a pillar of strength for our patients!