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Throughout our lives, we are blessed to connect with a number of different people. Family members, friends, and romantic partners – these individuals come into our lives at various stages, bringing their knowledge, life experiences and beliefs.

Each has the ability to encourage, motivate and inspire you, helping you to discover the best version of yourself.

Soul mates and life partners are often confused as being one and the same, however, there are differences between the two terms. A life partner is someone who comes into your life as a companion in this life. Their life is complementary to your own, creating a synergy and connection that brings you both feelings of joy, love, and respect. A soul mate is someone that you met in a previous life or on the spiritual plane. Your souls are aligned, and you are destined to meet in each life.

While the two terms carry different definitions, they don’t necessarily have to be different people. In some rare situations, one person may fit both roles. In most cases, however, the people in your life will fit into one category or the other.

7 Important Differences Between a Soul Mate and a Life Partner:

#1 – A Soul Mate Often Enters Your Life After A Huge Life Experience

The timing of your meeting can indicate which time of connection you will have with this person. A life partner will come into your life when things are going well, celebrating and enjoying the good times with you. They focus on the joy in the present moment, bringing happiness into your life. A soul mate, however, comes into your life after a major life-altering event, bringing closure and personal growth.

#2 – A Soul Mate Brings Turmoil, while a Life Partner Comes in Peace

Soul mates come into your life with the purpose of pushing you out of your comfort zone. In order to do so, they often bring times of challenge and difficult into your life. It is through these challenges that you learn about yourself and grow. Meanwhile, a life partner comes into your life as someone with similar life experiences. They connect with you where you’re at.

#3 – A Soul Mate Will Encourage You to Take Risks

Sometimes in life, we fall into a routine, and this routine can actually hold us back from achieving our full potential A life partner will try to protect you from the world, doing all that they can to keep you safe. This isn’t entirely selfless, in fact, it is often the exact opposite – they want you by their side, and so they don’t want anything to change. A soul mate, however, wants the best for you. They will encourage you to take risks and push yourself further, excited to celebrate with you as you achieve greatness.

#4 – A Soul Mate Is Sent to Teach You A Life Lesson

While a life partner is someone that you will develop a close connection with, they don’t come into your life to serve a specific purpose. When a soul mate comes into your life it is for a reason. They are sent to teach you a life lesson, or aid in guiding you towards the situation where a lesson will be learned. When they have served their person, and the lesson has been learned, they often move on.

#5 – A Soul Mate is Incredibly Similar to You, A Life Partner is Vastly Different

When you meet a soul mate, you may feel as though you are looking into a mirror. You come from an incredibly similar past, having gone through similar experiences. You share many of the same interests, hobbies, and beliefs. A life partner, however, compliments your life. They are often your polar opposite, from a vastly different background and lifestyle. You will introduce one another to new experiences and views in life.

#6 – A Soul Mate Is Someone You Will Feel You’ve Known All Your Life

When you meet a life partner you are meeting someone from a different background and life path, someone new that fits into your life today. It is a new relationship that is developing. This isn’t the case with a soul mate. While you may be meeting for the first time in this lifetime, it won’t feel like it. A soul mate is someone you knew on the spiritual plane before this life began, and your souls will experience an instant familiarity.

#7 – A Soul Mate Knows You Intuitively

When you connect with a soul mate, that connection is deeper than the physical and emotional connection of a life partner. You understand one another on a deeply spiritual or intellectual level. You understand one another’s needs, desires, and passions without having to put them into words. You share the same morals and values and have shared similar experiences throughout your life.