From Attempting Suicide to Self Love Specialist
by Chenoa Maxwell



September 28, 2019


15 Minute Read


From Attempting Suicide to Self Love Specialist

Today she is a leading expert on Self Love and Emotional Intelligence, but there was a time when Chenoa Maxwell placed such little value on her life, that she tried to end it.  

I’ve been reticent to speak in depth over the years about my story of attempted suicide. It is something you never fully feel comfortable with as a public persona. You see, as a former Hollywood leading lady, you learn quickly that the mask you wear in that business must be worn at all times. All times.

The glitz and glamour lifestyle that is manicured by agents, managers, producers, and studio heads has millions of dollars riding on it. Suicide attempts, loneliness, and abandonment isn’t exactly glamour. So the mask is shaped and worn, then a star is born.

But here we are, and life has brought me to this incredible space where I know no limits, so let’s talk.

My name is Chenoa Maxwell. Many of you may know me from my films and television shows including Hav Plenty, G, Girlfriends, For Your Love, or recently OWN TV’s Love in the City. And, because of the beauty of technology and social media, many more of you may know me from my company, Live Limitlessly. Live Limitlessly was created as a hub for personal development and mindset mastery. I am an Emotional Intelligence Expert and Self Love Specialist who’s taught thousands of people around the world how to bring the power of unconditional self-love into their life. This calling is an honor and a privilege and a culmination of my life’s work. However, I did not always own or inhabit the self love that I now spark around the globe.

I was a teenager trying my best to tend the scars from a mother who abandoned my younger brothers and I, a step mother so abusive she was arrested for it, and a father who did his very best as a young dad to provide but reached the limits of his capacity as the stress and demands of this family simply overwhelmed his ability. He was ill-equipped and needed help. So one day, after having a limited relationship with my mother over the years, I was sent from Queens, NY to San Leandro, California in the San Francisco Bay Area to live with her.

I was traumatized. I was depressed. I was confused. I felt hopeless. So I shut the world down.

Prior to coming to California to live with mother, the insecurity and fear I felt from the constant abuse by my stepmother was so powerful, I didn’t speak a word in over a year. No, that is not an exaggeration. I believe this to be the point where my father finally, with no other options or answers, turned to my mother for help. He was unaware of my stepmother’s abusive behavior and didn’t understand why his daughter had become mute. He thought perhaps I was going through some kind of emotional or hormonal change that only being with a mother could help. My mother seemed ready to activate and be a mother to her daughter at the time in life where a little girl needs to understand the physical shift occurring in her body and the change in her emotions. And initially, she did.

For the first few years, all seemed to be working very well for us. I had a brand new half-brother whom I love, a stepfather whom I enjoyed, and I was living exactly how any normal pre-teen should. Until that was no more. My mother’s marriage fell apart and so did she. I witnessed an unraveling in her that was unlike anything I have ever seen. She attempted suicide multiple times, became anorexic and bulimic, stopped taking care of herself and her kids, and started suffering from a doomsday phobia, and those are the things I feel comfortable talking about. And although she has never been diagnosed, I have always believed she also suffered from bipolar disorder. I felt obligated to care for her. I spent my time outside of school mothering my mother and my brother. I cried myself to sleep every night for years.

Looking back now, with years of knowledge and experience as an Emotional Intelligence Expert, it is clear to see the demons and dysfunctions my mother was dealing with, and this has helped me heal, and it’s helped me forgive her. However, as a young girl, I didn’t understand why my mother constantly chose to love others over loving herself and her kids. As a child, you don’t understand self-involvement or the inability to move past narcissism, an absence of mindfulness, or emotional instability. Day-to-day my mother was in a constant state of self-loathing, and no one was there to help clear a path towards understanding.

Time continued, and the conditioning of the absence of love, and abandonment from the one source you feel you should be cared by lead me to undervalue myself so deeply that at the age of 15 I attempted suicide. By God’s grace and the universe stepping in to hold me in its light, I was found in my bedroom by a friend who had randomly (but note, there is no such thing as random) come calling on me to hang out with him.

I was rushed to the hospital, admitted, stomach pumped and treated for an overdose. When I recovered, I was legally placed into the care of the state of California. My life hasn’t been the same since that day.

Initially, no one from my family came to check on me –– not my mother, nor my father –– so things seemed beyond bleak. I became a ward of the state, committed to an adolescent psychiatric ward, which was scary as fuck. Once inside, you are stripped down, given a single gown and slippers, then brought into a sterile white room with no mirrors. You wait. Over days and weeks, you are moved through a variety of exams, intelligence tests, and psychiatric evaluations. One wrong answer could have you taken away from your parents and committed to the asylum for life.

After my test results came back confirming I had no mental illness, was exceptionally smart, and was suffering from some form of trauma, my mother finally came and exclaimed to the staff and me that she wished I had died. It was clear to the staff that it was not me but my environment that was extremely toxic. At that moment my life was given another glimmer of light.

I was placed with a therapist that saved and help shape my life. She was the first person that ever recognized and told me I had value and worth. She stood for me and taught me the most valuable tools I still use and evangelize on my Live Limitlessly platform and private practice. I was seen and heard, and it changed my life forever. The internal dialogue I was having with myself shifted. I realized that it wasn’t about me –– the abandonment and lack of value placed on my existence wasn’t my fault. I changed my story from despair, blame, and thinking I was unlovable, to a focus of possibility, self love, and trusting that I am held by a higher power.

My life immediately shifted into the practice of using the tools of manifestation and self love, activating the power that was dormant inside of me. For the first time in my life, I was able to be exactly who I wanted to be.

I began to trust the power of creation, and creation starts from the inside out.

I failed and stumbled moving from the space of lack to universal possibility as I grew and developed a belief system. You have to understand that when you have zero –– nothing to believe in, nothing to hold on to –– it actually allows you to build whatever you choose to create. In my commitment to my work now as a transformation specialist, it is clearly recognizable that the failure to launch into a limitless life is the inability to break habit loops created by a fortified belief system, however that system is placed onto or into you. And even after you remove the blind spots and work on creating new habit loops, it takes ultimate commitment and practice to build.

Year after year, I put the tools and program to work. Exercises like the “Mirror Exercise,” the “Smile Exercise,” copious journaling, possibility mindset programming, and a deep well of additional self-development tools became as necessary to me as breathing. It was like a muscle system never ever before used now being exercised like a pro athlete every day. But the most important aspect of my time inside of that program as a ward of the state was the power of silence.

The deafening noise of my childhood, the narrative in my head, and the environment of negativity had stopped.

Having silence to process what was going on inside of me emotionally and intellectually allowed me to create space. And in that space is where possibility is created.

As you clear out the crap and muck, what you replace it with is where your roots of self belief and habit loops take hold and grow. Without that therapist I would have never believed in or understood that I was the master and creator of my own energy and destiny. She was my life sherpa showing me the way. So I leaned into the process fully and studied the tools I was given from a person at the time that had no other agenda or obligation to me other than to see the best shine radiate from me. Each time I leaned in harder and moved further into the practice, miraculous things in my life occurred. It was a step-by-step process that empowered me each time. From there the rocket ship of life was launched, and the actions of manifesting a limitless life were in full force.

The universe positions you, whether you like it or not. It listens to your heart’s calling and is the space where that manifestation occurs.

Whether it is monetary success, loving partnership, thriving health or the opposite — financial struggle and stress, unhealthy relationship patterns, failing health or a laundry list of adversity, the universe’s job is to create what you tell it to. It is not unlike the principles of the law of attraction I know you have heard of. The mastery of which will not occur until you are crystal clear in your heart’s calling. This is the power we are all capable of wielding that sits as a seed in your soul.

So how will you choose to water it?

Life truly develops as you shape it. I am a living witness and testament to that. And it is through incredible communities like BlackLove.com that you lean in and learn how to create that life you love and are intended to have. I invite you to join me here on Black Love each month as I share my journey and stories of how to truly harness the power of your possibility. Together, we will develop and shape a limitless life you are in love with.

Click Below for Additional Articles in LIVE LIMITLESSLY:

How to Commit to Self Love in the New Year

What My Divorce Taught Me About Self Love

Childless by Choice: A Powerful Act of Self Love