In this episode Amy
and I talk about
“An overburdened ICU nurse leans on her selfless new colleague at work and at home — until a patient’s unexpected death casts him in a suspicious light.”
In today’s episode, Shannon is joined by Amy Loughren, that ICU nurse – a spiritual soul with a fascinating story as featured in the Netflix production The Good Nurse starring Jessica Chastain and Eddie Redmayne.
Amy and Shannon met just over 3 years ago and in that time Amy’s story has now transcended the world and she has seen herself and her life cast into the spotlight in ways she never imagined.
Following her experience working with police in her home state in the USA to help confirm one of her friends, a fellow nurse, had been murdering patients, Amy found herself in a place of self-reflection and questioning who she was and her purpose in the world.
Amy candidly shares her story and her personal evolution with Shannon as well as chats about what it has been like to know the story, based on the book by Charles Graeber, was being turned into a Netflix movie through to finding herself in a media whirlwind promoting the movie. Through it all Amy has relied on her extensive treasure chest of support to remain as grounded as possible.
If you’d like to hear Amy present she is delivering a keynote at this year’s Ultimate Girls Week Away in September in Cairns Australia. Shannon with also be there presenting an intimate experience focused on thriving as a self-led soul. You can find out more about the Ultimate Girls Week Away via the link below.
She Leads She Thrives, the podcast for ambitious, ingenious souls hosted by Shannon Dunn of Thrive Factor Co. Be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss an episode.
Connect with guest Amy Loughren, The Good Nurse
Find out more and secure your place for the 2023 Ultimate Girls Week Away in Cairns, Australia and connect with Amy and Shannon in person here.
And watch The Good Nurse on Netflix – “An overburdened ICU nurse leans on her selfless new colleague at work and at home — until a patient’s unexpected death casts him in a suspicious light.”
She Lead She Thrives, the home of inspired conversations, practical and creative wisdom, expansive leadership and business insights, abundant Bragaudacious moments of celebration and useful info you can actually do something with.
You’ll hear about mindset marketing, money, magnetism, self awareness and the Thrive Factor Framework, it’s Archetypes and more. Amplify your role as a leader, a self led soul. Tap into your effortless success zone. Turn your ingeniousness and wisdom into profitable income streams.
From solo shows to guests you’ll definitely want more from, there’s something for every ambitious ingenious soul.
I’m Shannon Dunn, a true OG of the business coaching space, with an obsession with thriving. You are so welcome here. Let’s dive into today’s episode.
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Hello ambitious soul. This is Shannon Dunn, your host at She Leads She Thrives podcast. Now we have as we do every week a phenomenal episode waiting for you. You’ll get to tune into that very shortly. But before we begin with today’s episode, I wanted to share an important message with you.
The registrations are now open for the Thrive Factor Coach Self-leadership Coaching Certification. This begins for 2023 at the end of April this year. We’re welcoming just 10 incredible students from different parts of the world.
So if you’re already coaching, but perhaps don’t have a qualification, or don’t have a real, robust, reliable, proven framework to support you and your clients, or if you’re looking to become a coach, then please reach out to myself or my team.
You can do that via email email@example.com. Or you can follow the link that’s going to be in the show notes so that you can find out more information about the coaching certification.
It is from all the research that my team and I have done, the only self leadership coaching certification in the world. The Thrive Factpr Framework, as you may have heard me share in different episodes is a female centric framework. So if you’re working with women, and you’re finding that you just don’t have a reliable proven incredible personalisable framework to to lean into and to really support your clients, this could be the answer you’ve been looking for.
The coaching certification that we offer is incredibly unique. Not only will you be able to master the art of profiling using the Thrive Factor Framework, you will be able to access our coaching model where there are a lot of done-for-you exercises and templates and incredible things are going to make everything about coaching your clients as effortless as possible.
Plus, you’re going to get access to personal and business mentoring, a lot of that which is done by myself and our mentor team. I am so excited to see who joins us this year. It’s always a small group, a small cohort so that you also get personalized time with me, time with the Thrive Factor Coaches who are out already out there licensed and using this framework. And you can really feel like this is going to be a personalised, intimate, incredible experience that you wouldn’t get in a lot of other courses out there in the world.
So reach out to us this could be the ideal time to add Thrive Factor Coaching to your already existing business or to use it as an opportunity to leave a career that’s no longer working for you and to have something that’s reliable that you can use and support you moving forward. I can’t wait to see who joins us. Enjoy today’s episode.
Shannon Dunn 00:03
A huge Hello, everybody. Thank you for tuning in to another episode of She Leads She Thrives. I’m Shannon Dunn, longtime business and leadership coach.I am you know, the Inspirer Believer in me, archetypally is always going to be excited. And I have made it very clear to anyone listening in that I have prioritized and just said this to Amy, who’s joining me today prioritized, really focusing on inviting women to come and have conversations with me for the podcast that I have some connection with and know.
Shannon Dunn 00:49
And I feel so blessed to have met this beautiful soul. And we were just saying very briefly, it was like, let’s get it in record before we share all the good stuff in our chat beforehand. But I met Amy nearly three years ago. So we’re at the end of January 2022 as we’re recording our conversation. I’m sorry, January 2023.
Shannon Dunn 01:09
Of February in 2020, we were both together at the Ultimate Girls Week Away event in Fiji. It feels like a lifetime ago doesn’t it Amy? It’s just crazy how long ago it was. Only three years and how the world has shifted and changed and evolved in that time. And I vividly remember having conversations with you, you were traveling there with your beautiful cousin Tara. And you know, talking to the two of you, and also the the host of the founder of Ultimate Girls Week Away Liesel Albrecht who is a very good friend of mine. And I remember her saying to me, you need to talk to that Amy lady like she’s got a really interesting story. And look how things have unfolded since uh, you knew what was coming, the rest of us didn’t necessarily.
Shannon Dunn 01:52
So I’m going to ask you now to share a bit more about your background, and then we’ll get into having a conversation. So, you know, unlike some of the guests that we have on, I’ve got a bio to read out, Amy’s just going to tell you herself a little bit more about her life and the key highlights and then we’ll see where our conversation takes us today.
Amy Loughren 02:10
Well, almost 20 years ago now, I was a very exhausted ICU nurse. And I was catapulted into a world of intrigue when we found out that one of my very closest friends was a serial killer. I helped detectives put him behind bars. And after that, I went on a very deep spiritual journey to figure out why I manifested a serial killer into my life. And that’s really where I have been from 2003 until now is really just trying to figure all of that out.
Amy Loughren 03:03
And in the meantime, I had someone write a book about my story. And that has since been turned into two movies on Netflix. The book that was written, it was a brilliant book by Charles Graeber. It was mostly about the serial killer Charles Cullen. And the book’s name is The Good Nurse and the movie is also The Good Nurse and Jessica Chastain plays me in The Good Nurse and Eddie Redmayne plays the serial killer. And there is also a documentary called Capturing the Killer Nurse.
Amy Loughren 03:45
Since all of this I have been on press tour now for a few months. And I am still on cloud nine. Just the feedback that I’ve been getting from the movie and from the documentary has just been absolutely mind blowing. I genuinely thought that people would be very judgmental about what I did. And I think because I was so judgmental about what I had done and the things that we do to pick ourselves apart. And when we look back and we’re able to see it from a different perspective, we can give ourselves credit but it’s hard to do that in the moment. Yeah, so it’s definitely been a journey. So that was a mouthful. I apologize.
Shannon Dunn 04:40
Don’t need to apologize at all. Everything that anyone says I always feel as exactly as it’s meant to be shared. And I am remember you telling me a little bit about this and that. You knew when we were in Fiji, didn’t you that something from Netflix was coming or it was in the works, I vaguely remember that.
Amy Loughren 04:57
So, on the ferry home after we left Plantation Island, I went scuba diving with bull sharks on Barefoot Kuata Island in Fiji. And on the ferry back to the airport, I found out that Netflix had bought the movie for $35 million.
Shannon Dunn 05:28
Yes. So much so, and you may not know this and a lot a lot of people don’t I don’t hide it. But my very first career, I was a registered nurse.
Amy Loughren 05:40
What?! okay, you’ve got nurse energy, you do have nurse energy.
Shannon Dunn 05:44
I know. Um, so I have a lot of friends. Still, my mom was a nurse for 50 years, Amy. And I remember her telling her about your story and saying you need to watch this on Netflix and sitting at all my nurse friends because they have a different understanding, having, you know, they’re all different kinds of nurses, the ones that are still actively nursing or like me have stepped away and doing different things.
Shannon Dunn 06:03
But we understand what it could have been potentially like to be in your shoes with a confrontation of, you know, what do I do? This is somebody who is an important part of my life as a friend and yet look what’s happening and look at the impact it’s having. So that yeah, there’s been lots of conversations in my my social circle and with my mom, I then bought her a copy of your book and told her when you were coming on the podcast, she was all like, I think if she could be here watching us live, she would be so… Mum when you say
Amy Loughren 06:34
Shannon Dunn 06:36
But yeah, just incredible to imagine. You know, you had so much going on you juggling your girls were little at that time, you know, busy working like I could feel from watching the movie and having read the book, I could feel what it could have been like from my own experience, even though my nursing was so long ago now, of that the juggling the shift work, the stress, the everything Yeah. And then to have that happen on top of that I can only you know, begin to imagine what that was like.
Shannon Dunn 07:07
And I’m not surprised that you mentioned that you went to a space of judgment. For so what am I doing, it must have been questioning in every moment, you know? And like you said, why? How did this happen here. How did my life ended up with this manifestation and this experience? So there’s lots of things, so many things we can talk about.
Amy Loughren 07:30
So many, yes.
Shannon Dunn 07:33
One of the things that you said that you’d love to talk about is, you know, how darkness, you know is what can often drive us and shape us. So let’s start there and see where we go.
Amy Loughren 07:43
You know, the idea of darkness people, I believe that when people see Charles Cullen for instance, the serial killer. People see pictures of him and automatically say, Well, why didn’t you know he looks so creepy? Well, the media actually chooses photographs, really awful photographs. And in actuality he was actually kind of a handsome guy. He was salt and pepper hair, very tall, very slim. He was very well spoken, brilliant, brilliant nurse. And his personality was just so easy to be around. And I never had that boy girl issue with him where you think, Okay, is there something here or not? We were just friends.
Amy Loughren 08:52
And I did feel a darkness in him. However, a darkness to me means that they’re layered. It means that someone who has that darkness is seeking light. In my experience, it’s the way to truly follow that path of looking and seeking, it’s to go into the trenches of your own darkness. And so I may have projected that quest onto him. But I know that maybe I thought that he was a little depressed. Obviously I did not for one moment think oh my gosh, he’s murdering people. I just thought he’s got some sharp edges here.
Amy Loughren 09:47
And darkness to me, means that you have the potential to mold yourself into something greater always. And when you look at things from a physics standpoint, it is really darkness that light plays off of. That is where we manifest. We don’t manifest in the light, we manifest manifest in the dark, where there’s matter. And light actually captures the dark. And that’s how we make our manifestations come to life. So it’s really from the darkness, looking into the light.
Shannon Dunn 10:31
Yeah, I think from a psychological viewpoint, drawing on my background with counseling, art therapy, nursing. I’ve done a lot of study, and then with the archetypes and a lot of study around the light and shadow from the psychology perspective. Yeah, so this is like reflection of all of this as well. And I really struggled when particularly when I was studying psychology and art therapy. And we looked a lot at archetypal profiles and models and the shadow, as a expression, was so criticized as the bad parts of us because psychologically, it’s, it’s defined as the things that we are uncomfortable about, have shame about don’t want people to know about, and yet, I don’t know why, but I could see, it’s probably the Visionary Creator archetype I have, I could see that within that shadow part of ourself from a psychological perspective – gthat’s where our greatest wisdom is.
Amy Loughren 11:29
Shannon Dunn 11:30
We can go to place and we can experience what it’s like to be there, when we can bring that and integrate that together, we can be our greatest shining light in the world. Contributor.
Amy Loughren 11:44
And you know what else I have found is that when you’re in that darkness, you’re not performative. You are just raw. And that rawness is scary for people. And I was really happy to see how the trend had changed from talking about darkness to shadow. And yet, even with shadow for some people, they see that as well, that means I’m blocking the light. And to me, it’s no – you’re playing with the light.
Shannon Dunn 12:17
When we look at the actual creation of a shadow in the world. So we’re looking in a room and there’s a light turned on, the brighter the light, the bigger potential shadow that there is. So therefore, to me, when I think about that the depth of the shadow or the breadth of the shadow can create the greatest light. So it’s a great way to look at it.
Amy Loughren 12:42
It’s a gorgeous metaphor.
Shannon Dunn 12:44
Yeah. And, yeah, it doesn’t happen. And that’s why, you know, when I came to create the Thrive Factor Framework and the Archetypes because I wanted to make it very appealing to women in the modern world, particularly in the space of leadership and business, I deliberately chose not to use light and shadow in relation to archetypes. So light is strengths, shadow is potential challenges. And the potential is to take away that obvious negative effects that people you know, bring to life in their own existence when they hear the word shadow, and they understand aspects of the psychological teaching around it. It’s like no, that’s where all the incredible stuff is.
Amy Loughren 13:20
That is so good to really switch that up from darkness to potentiality. And also, darkness can almost be perceived as like you said, not just negative. I go to the actual word “bad” or “evil” and bad and evil is also a construct and the behaviors that happened with Charles Cullen’s mental illness, we estimate or I should say that professionals have estimated his victim number to be over 400 people.
Shannon Dunn 13:50
That just blew my mind when I saw that.
Amy Loughren 14:16
Yeah. So, his behaviors, what he was creating, what he had used within this darkness, he could not find his way out. He did not have the right resources, he did not have the right help, he did not have any kind of a construct to say how, how can I make myself a different path towards something that is positive.
Amy Loughren 14:48
Instead, he became very addicted to his behaviors that offered him pleasure, which many people can believe that pleasure center is joy. And it’s not. And I think so many times we confuse joy with pleasure. Yes. And I have, I’ve been really reading a lot about this recently, and how, especially people that have had very challenging childhoods, they were never given a toolkit to find happiness. They were never given a toolkit to understand what joy was. However, their pleasure, pleasure centers could be stimulated at a very young age. And so they started to equate that with, you know, their equal signs were this particular pleasure center is shame, this pleasure center is bad, this pleasure center. Yes, and you can become addicted to that type.
Amy Loughren 15:58
So, in my mind, I don’t know this to be true, because I never got any answers from Charlie. In my mind, that’s what happened is that he just became very addicted to what was stimulated in that pleasure center, somehow killing. It certainly wasn’t joyful. But it did stimulate something in him that he needed to keep going back to in a compulsion type of obsessive behavior.
Amy Loughren 16:31
So those behaviors were not ever going to be shut down, they weren’t going to be stopped. He wasn’t going to be able to be rehabilitated, he had murdered too many times. And we don’t know whether he had only been murdering people in the hospital. We just were able to surmise it was only in the hospital. However, he had a history of other very concerning behaviors that looked like perhaps it was spilling over into the community as well.
Shannon Dunn 17:08
Yeah. So it’s so kind of interesting, too. And I imagine you lived this, but the rest of us even watching it now sitting there go – what was that like to discover that in someone that you’d had that close connection and feels like a trusting relationship with in a work environment that also spilled into your personal life? Yeah, as a friendship, to be confronted with the reality of what was actually happening and what had happened.
Shannon Dunn 17:34
So you know, to take us back if you want to Amy to solid that reconciling that in your yourself to the confrontation of that, but I know this person, but they’re doing, you know, things that are not okay. And it’s been on a big scale. And I’m not sure if at the time you realized it was as wide reaching or that’s just really been the longer term investigation afterwards. I’ve tried to work, put all the pieces I guess, of the puzzle together.
Amy Loughren 18:03
When I first found out Danny Baldwin, who was the lead detective, he showed me some evidence. And when I saw this piece of paper, it was a printout of his medication withdrawals. And I can tell you that it was very much like in other movies, I want to say it was like in the movies, but they didn’t do it in the movie about me, every everything just kind of came in. And if you want to behold the now, nothing else existed, except that moment with that piece of paper. And I couldn’t hear, my heart was racing.
Amy Loughren 18:57
And I just knew, and I knew energetically that he had harmed people. I knew from a scientific standpoint, from a nursing standpoint, from a friendship standpoint. I just could not, I couldn’t process it, like it was complete and utter overload. And my paradigm shifted in that moment. I also realized in that moment, there had been a time that I actually asked for this, which is odd. Yeah. I had been diagnosed with cardiomyopathy. I was supposed to be going for a procedure and this was many months before that, maybe six months before that. So I found out in October about Charlie. So February was when I was having my procedure before.
Amy Loughren 20:04
So in February, I was dropping my girls off. And I had been told I may not survive this procedure. And as I dropped them off, I wanted their very last vision of me to be smiling and happy and loving. I didn’t want to be crying. I didn’t want to scare them. I wanted them to remember me as that, you know, I made myself put makeup on, I smiled, I held them. We went for some ice cream before, like I really made it special. And then I dropped them off and pulled around the corner and just stopped and did the ugly cry. And then I did the bargaining with the Universe, which I think anybody would do.
Amy Loughren 20:55
I said, All right. All right. If you whatever this is, if this is the path , if this is me doing this for myself, I don’t know why I would choose this for myself. If this is God, if this is Buddha, whatever the f*@k this is, I am talking to you right now. All right, I understand. I’m getting the big kick in the ass. Say if I am saved, I am going to take this as the biggest sign that I am going to have to say yes to anything spiritual, I will go back on my spiritual path. I will listen, I will listen, you do not have to kick me.
Amy Loughren 21:41
So when this happened, my thought was alright guys, this is a little too much like, right? A serial killer, like, yet chose a serial killer like me, like me, me, me?! So it was just like this crazy feeling of like really understanding the weirdness paradigm and also understanding. I didn’t have the words for it, then because it was really before the secret. I really had never read any Watts or like, I did not know about manifesting at that time. I understood the concept. A little bit, but..
Shannon Dunn 22:25
It wasn’t common language.
Amy Loughren 22:27
No, it really wasn’t not until The Secret came out. Really not until The Secret came out. But I did understand that I manifested it.
Shannon Dunn 22:37
Yeah. Yeah. Such an interesting thing. Just say you know, you did the bargaining with the universe, not knowing what that’s gonna look like. But yeah, I can see myself sitting in your position and thinking, really?! like that. Like, as if I hadn’t already had something big to deal with. You’re giving me this?
Amy Loughren 22:55
Okay, I’m dying. But before I go down, this is definitely a blaze of glory, folks. Like, that’s what I was thinking, is that. All right, I have to say yes. Because I’m dying. And I have to do this. And it also then I went back to, well, was that the wrong answer? Because was I supposed to say no to this something big, and just be with my daughters? So there was a lot of confusion there, there was a lot of confusion.
Shannon Dunn 23:26
Yeah. So as you say Amy, it really took you into a space of a spiritual journey. No surprise, like if you hadn’t gone down that whole path of exploration, and, you know, who am I and what, what’s my real role in the world? And why did this happen? How did this happen? I kind of would have been a bit surprised if that hadn’t been where you had gone to. But, you know, tell us what it was like that go into that first part of whatever that spiritual journey was, and I know, it’s something you’ve beautifully continued with, since then, and again, it’s such a big confronting experience, it would activate a lifetime of exploration and understanding for sure. But you know, what, what was the beginning of that spiritual journey like for you, and where did you start? How did you first come to create some understanding where there was so much else I imagine, you know, emotionally, mentally, physically going on for you, trying to kind of what what is what just happened?
Amy Loughren 24:27
So, I left nursing, after I was able to have a medical procedure to keep me out of and off the transplant list. And after that, I was able to leave nursing. So in 2003, was when I helped the detectives, and by 2007 I left nursing – for a time – I actually did go back. But then I decided I wanted to do something different. And NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming), hypnotherapy those were starting to gain some traction, especially in my area, I actually ended up living in a spiritually dense area. And it’s considered the Sedona of upstate New York. And so I was surrounded by these vortexes, which I didn’t know anything about. And so I said, Hey, why don’t I study this.
Amy Loughren 25:40
And so when I went to study, I was walked on this walking meditation, walking hypnosis protocol, a timeline regression protocol. And you’re wide awake during this hypnosis, and you’re walking during this hypnosis on a timeline. And I shifted paradigms. I don’t know how else to explain it, except that it shifted something in me so dramatically, that I realized I could then possibly help other people shift that dramatically, and not have to go through 10 years of therapy to get to the point where I had gotten, and to not suffer as much.
Amy Loughren 26:41
I suffered for so long, and was looking for answers for so long. And so I started really researching through workshops, and going through different modalities, and then gaining all of these tools to help myself. And in the process, I was learning also how to help other people. That timeline shift helped me to manifest everything that I am reaping the benefits of right now. And that was a book that I didn’t even have to write – someone else wrote it. Yeah, I have had, literally things come into my life through manifestation. And it’s absolutely incredible. I also have realized that I don’t need to convince anyone of these things anymore. I think when I first started out, I wanted people to believe in the same way that I did. And I’ve realized it doesn’t matter.
Amy Loughren 27:59
The people who have already gotten to the point where they are working on similar paradigms, similar timelines, they’ll want to work through this, they’ll want to use these particular modalities. And I think a lot of healers, I don’t really even like using that word. I think some people use that word. And that’s fine. That’s wonderful for them. I don’t see myself as a healer, I see myself more as an educator. And as a pointer here, hit this modality, I can help you with this modality but it’s not up to me to heal you. You that’s your stuff. You get to heal that. Here’s some skills I can offer you so you can heal yourself. I cannot heal you.
Shannon Dunn 28:53
Yeah, I think that, you know, that’s almost a whole other podcast conversation. You know, I don’t ever believe that I am somebody who is a healer. That’s not whatever intended to be, what I studied to be, what I’ve practiced to be, what I have been, and I find myself certainly in a place of just being mindful when people do use that word, because it’s a big kind of comes with a lot of claim to it. You know, just say, I’m a healer, like, you know, let’s have a look at the real definition of healing.
Shannon Dunn 29:28
That’s a big, big kind of statement to make. And I’m very much more in line with what you just described. Amy is like, it’s like being a guide to offer people opportunities to explore for themselves and maybe have a conversation to help them to reflect and which also, to me is the you know, the epitome of coaching is really being able to guide someone to connect with their own inner resources and also at times where they’re seeking answers or they’re curious is to say, well, this is something you might like to try or I found this thing or I know someone who really enjoyed this, so that there’s opening up their world to more possibilities.
Shannon Dunn 30:07
Rather than a toolbox or a toolkit, I like to call it a treasure chest. All the things that we can draw on to support us and also share beautifully with the intention that it may also support somebody else, because they’ve discovered something new, too. I can imagine, as you said, like, the early days of going into that space of NLP. It was I remember when I did my first NLP certification and people like, what is this weird thing you said, just studying? You know, yes, you this, but now it’s such a common language.
Amy Loughren 30:41
So common, and it you know, and that is, those are the building blocks to where we are now. Yeah. For me, it was I needed that foundation. You know that with Reiki, that foundation, then just kept building. And I could never stay within one modality. Each time I would discover a modality, I would just completely immerse myself in it. And then it was what’s next? Yeah. What’s, what’s next Reconnective Healing. That was, that was probably what, what opened me up the most was Reconnective Healing.
Amy Loughren 30:43
And obviously, you know, using hypnosis and using timeline regression, and that is not the same thing as regression therapy, where people do regression to past life, even though I have done that. And it’s very interesting, and I love it. And I think that some people have really been able to answer some questions about themselves through past life regression. I personally, for myself, it’s been more of a wow, that was really cool kind of thing. And I’m really glad that I had that experience. But I feel that there were other modalities that really helped me connect with parts of myself that needed to be opened up.
Shannon Dunn 32:17
Needs to be expressed. I find that when we have such big shifts in our life, now yours is on an epic scale. But for a lot of us, it’s a changing dynamic of a relationship, losing someone, losing a job even, it’s not the epic experience that you have had, Amy, but when we are confronted with something that changes us, we can go into a space of really being challenged from this perspective of identity.
Shannon Dunn 32:46
Who am I? Like, that’s one of the ultimate questions of that, you know, the ancient philosophers mused all those billions, or however, many years ago it was, who am I and that the, the gift to each of us solely give to ourselves as human beings is to know thyself. Yeah, I mean, I get you understand some of the background about my obsession with archetypes is that understanding mechanisms or that , but you know, that when your world is shaken, it is very much a space of Well, I don’t know who I am anymore for a period of time. And it very much is a very, I say common, but it is common in many regards, patterning, that a lot of us in our curious nature, as human beings are then called forward to explore.
Shannon Dunn 33:29
This is where things like the spiritual journey start for a lot of people, the exploration of modalities or trying different things to try and as you say, you know, open up two parts of myself just rediscover parts of myself, understand parts of myself and how it all fits together. So I can work out who I am, in this moment, in this point in time, and who I could be or who I want to be moving forward. So identity is such a big thing. So I am only I can only imagine in your evolution over these last couple of decades. And even before that, because I know that there was some different pivotal times in your life, even up to this experience. That identity has been shaken a lot. So tell us about that. Even I think another thing that you said you will be very happy to talk about was how you learn to trust through being abused. So that’s another you know, key thing. What do you want to share?
Amy Loughren 34:20
You know, it’s it’s so interesting how so many people have asked me how do you even trust anyone? How, how is it that you can even have relationships now with anyone? Like aren’t you worried that someone else is going to try to take advantage of you. How can you possibly trust your gut anymore? And the truth is, I started to have more faith in myself.
Amy Loughren 35:00
Once I went down this path, at first, I was like, Oh my gosh, I really genuinely thought that I would see a monster in front of me. I had a very challenging childhood. I was abused in my childhood. And that abuser was quite monstrous. And yet, there were parts of him that were extremely loving toward me, and gave me a lot of attention. However, with that, and being raised like that, I assumed that I would be hyper aware, if I saw evil again, that’s the only way that I could possibly say that word.
Amy Loughren 35:49
I didn’t see it. I didn’t see it in Charlie, I didn’t understand it. And what I started to realize, as I was healing myself with these modalities, is that I did have a superpower, and I wasn’t seeing monsters. It was I saw only the light in people. And it was the gift that was given to me as a child, is that it was okay to love someone dark. It doesn’t mean that we don’t hold them accountable for their behaviors, you can still love them. And that’s okay. You don’t have to love their behaviors, you still hold them accountable for those behaviors. But you can still see the light in them. And you can still see that that light is the same light that is in me. And as much as that sounds like a lot of bullshit to some people because they want to hate what they fear.
Amy Loughren 37:07
And, to me, my friendship with Charlie was what put him behind bars. He may still be killing if he was not able to be as close as he was to me. Yeah, it was me who also stopped my abuser, because I was able to confront him. And it did end with me. And with those, that bravery that I had, even as a girl, I was still able to take that into my adulthood, and reestablish all of that replay, it out in a different circumstance, because my monster was not Charlie, the monster was the hospital. Because the hospital was shredding everything. The hospital was covering everything up. And it was going up against them that was the hardest part for me.
Shannon Dunn 38:11
Wow. And yet that’s not what people would make an assumption about. This is where we look at things from the outside. There are so many assumptions made about why people did certain things, about how things actually played out, about what the truth and the reality really was. So it’s another part of your gift to the world, Amy that you were open to having the story shared as well so that more people could learn about all that you experienced, you said drawing on bravery, about the truth and bringing things to light, literally in in many different ways.
Shannon Dunn 38:49
As you were talking there I was thinking about often the misunderstanding I guess, as the words coming to me about the whole process of forgiveness. And I know that particularly in my days more in counseling and therapy before coaching, talking with clients who have had a range of different experiences, a lot of abuse in various different ways. And them saying they wanted to be able to forgive – often themselves firstly for their part in it – but forgive whoever the abuser was or the circumstances or the experience. Yeah. And getting a bit confused though about feeling that if they forgave that meant that they were condoning or saying that what happened was okay, which is not.
Shannon Dunn 39:32
Yeah. So talk me through like your process, did you go through some kind of forgiveness as it happened? Were you able to do any sort of forgiveness and compassion or anything particular for yourself in this being able to to shift and be you are now? No, no, we’re talking two decades on lots of lots of modalities, lots of exploration, but what kind of things have you done for yourself?
Amy Loughren 39:56
So I can tell you it is one I have the most uncomfortable things to talk to people about with forgiveness when it comes down to abuse, because it’s so personal and you never know where they are on their particular path. I remember being very, very angry when someone would say that I had to forgive my abuser, I would become irate. And also that I had to forgive my family. Yeah. So when I went on this path, I really thought that that’s where I was headed, is that I was going to look for a way to forgive them. And myself. And what I did find one of the modalities that I worked with was A Course in Miracles. I don’t know, if you have read any of that.
Shannon Dunn 40:55
I’m very familiar with it, I’ve got my copy of my book’s probably not far away from me here on my desk.
Amy Loughren 41:00
So it shifted my perspective from forgiving to having nothing to forgive. That manifesting is not just about in this moment manifesting – and this is only on my journey – other people that have been abused, they have their journey, the way that they process, it is beautiful. I commend to them, however they get through it. For me, I chose my particular circumstance, it’s my belief system, that I chose my circumstance before I arrived here. And when you take control of that, you realize every single thing, every single role that anyone played in your life, what a beautiful gift it is.
Amy Loughren 41:56
That is a huge stretch for so many people that are struggling. So I find that when I do talk about those things, I make it very clear that that’s about my journey, I do not expect anyone else to believe those things, I do not expect that someone is going to magically find that part of their journey. Everyone’s journey is different. My journey showed me visions of how I did choose this situation for myself. So I didn’t need to forgive, because I’m grateful. I’m grateful for my sister, I’m grateful for my mother, I’m grateful for my grandparents for holding that space, and for playing the roles that they played in my life, literal roles of how we came on to this particular realm. And we have these soul contracts that I believe in. And they played them out beautifully. And we’re going to get to do it again together someday. And I also have been reading thousands of accounts of near death experiencers that come back and have very similar messages for us is that we choose this, we choose our circumstances. And I would never say that to a mother who has a child with cancer , it just wouldn’t be helpful. It ust don’t be helpful. Yeah, there’s a place and a time.
Shannon Dunn 43:43
The confronting aspect of someone sharing that when you’re in the midst of living through a trauma. As you said not helpful.
Amy Loughren 43:54
No and it’s so delicate to make it very, very clear. And I think that’s also where a lot of spiritual people get tripped up, is they decide on their particular modality and belief that that modality is what is going to heal the world. And it does heal their world. Yeah, but it’s their journey. It’s their particular journey.
Shannon Dunn 44:21
For sure. So so many interesting it all it is really is. Now remind me that The Good Nurse the movie, was that about October last year that came out? Yes, thanks. Yeah, because I’m trying to take trace my own timeline back to when I was like when I realized it was out. Okay, got it like block my time, watch it, to everyone. And then there was also the, as you said, the documentary as well.
Shannon Dunn 44:43
And as you shared earlier on, Amy, you’ve been on this whirlwind of a media tour. As I said, I watching you you on social media and thinking where is she today? Like hardly home in months and months and months now. What has been one of the most I guess, a moment during that time where the spotlights been on you in a way that it hadn’t been before, despite the experience that you’ve had, and everything that’s happened over the last couple of decades and even before that, but a moment where you’re just sort of almost like a pinch yourself, like, I can’t believe I’m here with whatever the situation was, whether it was someone that you were talking to, you know, whatever it was, what was that?
Amy Loughren 45:28
I remember I was backstage. And I was we were all lining up. It was me, and Eddie Redmayne and Jessica Chastain. And Tobias Lindholm, the director, amazing director, Krysty Wilson-Cairns, who wrote the screenplay, and she’s just brilliant. She is written, you know, she’s won Oscars. And we’re backstage. And I was, I was sort of reciting to myself, because I had to go out and speak to about 400 people. And I kept reciting. No one’s dying. No one is dying. Like, do you know how cool that is? And I turned to Eddie Redmayne and I’m like, Do you know how cool that is? And it was that moment, and he looks at Jessica, he’s like, yeah, that’s pretty f*@king cool. Nobody’s dying. Like, I just …what, what just happened. And then, and just just actually standing there and thinking, I manifested this, this is pretty cool. Like, this is some good shit right here. This is some really cool shit. This is really, really cool. And I was able to take it in, like, actually take it in like, okay, all right. This is real. This is real.
Shannon Dunn 47:00
Yeah, I mean you’re standing next to a brilliant couple of actors, and one who’s been chosen to portray you. Like, that must have been also a bit of.. It’s not many of us in the world, they get to actually meet people that represent us in a movie about part of our life. Like, yeah, there’s so often stories about real people happen after they’ve passed. You’re still here. Being able to go and do all the media and just be able to interact with the world in their response to what they’ve watched and what they’ve read and what they were learning about. Yeah, I can only imagine what a kind of a mind stretch and a few at different times.
Amy Loughren 47:42
A lot of paradigm shifts there too. Yes. A lot. Yes.
Shannon Dunn 47:47
Oh, very cool. And have you had any really interesting, challenging questions from media, over the course of that time that you’re a bit like, I don’t know, really where to go with this? I can only imagine.
Amy Loughren 48:01
Shannon Dunn 48:01
No, good. Okay. Yeah,
Amy Loughren 48:03
No. And if this had been 10 years ago, yes, I would have stumbled. At 20 years out, and also being so open and having done the work. There wasn’t one thing that someone was going to say to me, that would put me in defense mode. I know, even 10 years ago, I was very, very defensive about someone even implying that I might have had something romantic with Charlie Cullen. And now, I really understand because it was hard for people watching the movie, and I’m even watching the movie and thinking, I wonder if there’s something there.
Amy Loughren 48:51
And I think the reason that Charlie and I were so close is because there wasn’t that romantic stuff going on. Because we could trust each other in a way that didn’t get all caught up and in all that weird pheromone stuff. So no, I know that there was a message that I received, where I had to step back, and it was from a young nurse, she was in nursing school and she asked me how I can appear so peaceful on social media, and so happy when all of these people died. Kind of a How dare you? Oh, interesting. And yeah, and I answered her. You’re absolutely right. And the anger that you’re feeling toward me, just shows me you’re going to be a great nurse because you’re right. Why wouldn’t you feel anger toward this? and people that don’t feel angry toward this, I don’t understand. Because it was a huge tragedy. It was 20 years ago, I’ve been able to be at peace. But it’s through a lot of work of figuring out how to be at peace. So please, if this is what you need to feel toward me, please feel it. Because believe me, I felt it for myself for a long time.
Shannon Dunn 50:29
I think that’s the thing to be mindful of which I can tell that you are is, this was 20 years ago for you. But for a lot of people, this is a brand new story they’ve discovered. Absolutely. It’s happened in real time, not two decades ago.
Amy Loughren 50:45
It should be shocking. It should be terrifying.
Shannon Dunn 50:49
Yeah, very much so. Well, I’ve got some questions to ask you now that I’m asking everyone who joins me on the podcast. And I’m going to wrap up with a final question. So She Leads She Thrives is for the leaders of the world. But a lot of them the women that listen to this, I have no doubt in my mind, because this was my intention and my vision for it, they don’t necessarily recognize themselves as leaders. But when we can look at actually being self-led, that’s a whole different dynamic. And that’s really what I want to champion here. So I’d love to hear from you. What role does leadership play in your life? And in now this kind of work and the story that you’re sharing here? And what role does leadership play in that for you?
Amy Loughren 51:30
Leadership, I believe is being a voice for what you’re good at. Being a voice for what you’re passionate about. And being a leader does not mean being a boss, it doesn’t mean that you’re in charge of anything, it just means that you feel good, and something that you feel very capable of. And it’s not about being more capable than someone else. It’s very much about feeling masterful within yourself, and then just emanating that, and you don’t have to be confident. It just has to be something that’s within you. that shines out. You don’t have to do anything. Just be.
Shannon Dunn 52:21
Yeah, that’s a beautiful answer. Thanks. So often, leadership is misguided in our understanding of it, that it’s an external expression. Like you said, you don’t have to be a boss, you don’t have to lead anyone else. It very much for me, I feel that the quality of leadership comes from within. So Amy, how do you know you’re thriving? How do you know when you’re thriving?
Amy Loughren 52:46
When I am thriving, it means I am following what the path is offering me. Not that I’m pushing the path. I’m not that I’m forging that path, I am realizing the path that is already there. And I feel that because there’s no resistance, as soon as there’s resistance, I know I have veered off. I’m starting to stub my toe, I’m starting to get sick. I’m starting to… So I know I’m off a little bit. So sit back, sit down. And when things are going nice and smooth and my meditations are giving me that positive energy then yes, I know I’m thriving,
Shannon Dunn 53:44
Beautiful. I feel like we’re going to have to do a mash up of all the incredible answers to these questions and put them all together over time because they get there the answers are different for every one of you.
Amy Loughren 53:54
I love that.
Shannon Dunn 53:56
What I love too is that we are not all the same and what a great thing that is. So if people want to know more about you aside from going to Netflix and searching for The Good Nurse, you’ll get the movie in the documentary, but what about connecting with Amy the woman you know, how’s that best for people to connect with you and you know, follow what you’re up to. And, you know, whatever that is that they want to reach out and connect with you about.
Amy Loughren 54:24
Instagram is definitely the best place. I do have my website Amy the good nurse and I’ve been so horrible with keeping up with it. I did hire an assistant to start really managing my website a little bit better because I haven’t touched it and this since all of this started so I apologize if anybody has been going there. Yeah, so yeah, I do get emails but some of them have gone to the wayside. Instagram however, I do have an automatic reply system if you message me or if you talk to me on Instagram, I answer almost right away. So please follow me, @amythegoodnurse, Amy Loughren on Instagram, and https://www.amythegoodnurse.com/. And I would love to hear from all of you, I would love it, just love it.
Shannon Dunn 55:26
So we will make sure Amy that all of those links are in the show notes. And I think anyone who’s listening for the first time, and you listen to podcasts, you know that that’s usually the drill. But if you’re also a longer term listener of She Leads She Thrives and you know that not only where there’ll be all the links for you to connect with our guests, but there’s also a full transcript of the episode. So if you want to go back and go, now, what did they say in this part? Go you can find that in the transcript.
Shannon Dunn 55:52
Alright, so a couple more questions to ask you before we wrap up for today. So what’s a piece of wisdom that you’d love to share with the ambitious and ingenious souls that are tuning into, listening to our conversation? What’s a piece of wisdom you’d like to share with them?
Amy Loughren 56:12
I think there is a part of us that understands when we are getting a universal No. And we continue to push things. There is a very, very crass saying, and I’m going to beg for an apology from myself for saying this, but I’m going to say it anyway. Because it is a Zen master saying that. :Life is like a fart. If you have to force it, it’s probably shit.”
Shannon Dunn 56:56
Yes. Makes complete sense. I love it. I love it. It’s not too crass at all. I was like, what did she get to say with that kind of a preface? So Amy, what’s next for you? I know that you because you’ve shared with me some of the travel that you’ve got coming up, but kind of what’s next? What is the future for The Good Nurse, that Amy the actual good nurse, not the story and the movie? What’s the future looking like for you?
Amy Loughren 57:22
Charles Graeber and I are working on a couple of projects. One of them is more along the lines of my story. And the other thing is working on a limited edition – I don’t know if podcast is the right word – I think it’s more of all of us talking about our feelings about what occurred, rather than the actual investigation itself. Okay. So that is that should be coming out.
Shannon Dunn 57:56
Yeah, good stuff. So with that, my heartfelt thank you to you to saying yes to me when I reached Amy, do you want to come on my podcast. Very, very cool. And yeah, I think we could keep talking for hours..
Amy Loughren 58:13
We could talk forever.
Shannon Dunn 58:15
Which is such a good thing and I I hope to see you again one day soon potentially even this year.
Amy Loughren 58:21
Shannon Dunn 58:22
So Amy will be in Australia later this year at the Ultimate Girls Week Away and I intend on being there as part of the team. So it will be so good to give you a hug and real person, in real life and to reconnect again which would be fantastic you’re doing a Tara she needs to come again too. Definitely a bit of a reunion for some of the you know the inaugural ultimate girls. Yes be so good.
Shannon Dunn 58:50
And you and I switching different places I won’t be in the you know the audience, I’ll be part of the team doing different things, but you know I was a keynote speaker last time, this is your time to shine on the stage now. It going to be such a beautiful thing to see you having stepped up and to hear the stories that I know you’re going to share and inspire so many others with.
Shannon Dunn 59:10
Because there’s no doubt in my mind from an archetypal perspective that you have the Inspirer Believer Archetype, it is the Archetype that is the potentialist is so we see the good – I have it as well – we see the good in others. And that is where we start with we lead with that energy rather than any as you said that evil but bad that all the other things that can come up that can be very real in some people. We still see the good in people and we connect with them in that space as a priority. So beautiful.
Shannon Dunn 59:37
So thank you lovely lady. Enjoy your travels. I look forward to hearing about them and watching them on social media between now when I see you later in in 2023. And to our listeners thank you for tuning in and listening to Amy and I. Do go on if you haven’t seen The Good Nurse on Netflix, I don’t know what you’ve been doing because there was a was a lot of hype about it for a good reason at the time. And as I said it right at the beginning, I know I shared it with a lot of people just watch this! Particularly my nursing friends because I knew that they would have a different understanding having lived in that role in the world as well.
Shannon Dunn 1:00:12
So, you know, thank you everyone for listening in as always reach out connect with Amy. If you’ve got questions for us, she said she’s open to hearing from you and would love to and tell her you listened to the podcast and came from here as well.
Shannon Dunn 1:00:24
Have a beautiful day wherever you are in the world and remember you were born to thrive. I believe that and I look forward to connecting with more of our listeners, with more of our incredible guests moving forward. Have a great day everyone.
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