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12 Types of Soul Mates

Are there people you feel you were destined to meet or people who make you feel at home whenever you're around them? Those same people might occasionally drive you nuts or even contribute to your most transformational wounds. These are people with whom you have a strong soul connection—or what we often refer to as soul mates.

What is a soul connection?

A soul connection is when two people feel they are linked on a soul level in a significant or extraordinary way. It's the sense that your link transcends the earth plane—transcending the practical details of your relationship, like being co-workers or lovers—and that something much more brought you together or is at play. You might feel you have known each other in a past life or that your souls agreed before this life to meet up now.

"When I hear someone use the word 'soul mate,' it often seems to connote exclusivity," Tess Whitehurst, spiritual teacher and bestselling author, tells mbg. Whitehurst, who has been in a romantic relationship with the same partner for 20 years, feels that the opposite is true—we, in fact, have many soul mates. And as we're all part of a common humanity or spiritual consciousness, we're actually all linked on a soul level.

How do you recognize a soul mate? Let's look at different types of soul connections—remembering there can certainly be overlap. Someone could be your soul mate in many different ways.

Types of soul mates:

1. Soul partners

There are certain souls you agreed to partner with in this lifetime—the most common type of soul mate. You might have agreed to be best friends, in-laws, raise children together, or open a business together. A soul partnership could be with someone you know intimately for your whole life, like a beloved sibling, or it can be with someone you barely know for a short time—like an influential person in your industry who offers you a big break in your career. Soul partners are specifically designed to help support you in this life emotionally, professionally, or in any other way you require to accomplish and experience what your soul planned to do here on earth. None of us can do this life alone, and soul partnerships remind us how beautifully, masterfully, and intricately our lives are woven together.

2. Soul ties

When you feel a soul tie, it's simply the sense that another soul is in your life for a reason. For example, if your life is very busy yet you meet a new potential friend or potential business partner, the sense that you have a soul tie to this person could inspire you to make room in your life for the relationship. Perhaps you're not in the market for a pet, but when a friend says they need to give up their pet because they have to move overseas unexpectedly, your clairsentient, or feeling, psychic pathway might give you the feeling that you have a soul tie with this animal and bringing it into your home is the right thing to do for both of you. You might think of soul ties as the ties that bind, like the Bruce Springsteen song!

3. Past-life soul mates