05/03/2015 11:02 pm ET Updated May 01, 2016

The Truth About 'Soulmates'

Growing up, like every other young girl, I was told how one day I would find my "soul mate"... that one special person in the world that was meant just for me... How I would know immediately the moment I met him that this was "the one"... How we would recognize each other immediately, fall in love and live happily ever after.

That is complete and total bullshit.

Don't misunderstand me. I absolutely believe in soul mates. But what I have discovered is that just because I found someone who I connected with deeply on a soul level, it did not mean that was the person I was meant to spend the rest of my life with.

Throughout our lifetime, we will feel deep, powerful, emotional connections with more than one person. Our natural inclination is to want to be with that person in a romantic relationship. We tell ourselves that "this is it," that we found "the one," that we MUST be together. I have seen people who share these intense connections with someone and then get into a relationship with them, only to discover that they don't work together at all. They love each other deeply and are drawn together like two magnets, but they fight constantly. They trigger each other on a daily basis. They don't see eye to eye on anything. Or they are just at different places in their lives and therefore want different things. But because they feel this is their "soul mate," they stay in the relationship much longer than they should and suffer needlessly. They keep going back to the person again and again hoping to make it work when in reality, the union is meant for something entirely different.

When we feel powerfully connected to another human being that strongly, as if we've known them our entire life, it's many people's belief that we have known them before... in other lifetimes. And our souls have made a contract with each other to meet up again during this lifetime for a purpose. That purpose is always to learn lessons from each other and to move us further along on our spiritual journeys.

The first man I ever felt a soul connection to was married. So I knew we weren't meant to be in a romantic relationship together. Instead, we became great friends over the years and I learned incredibly powerful lessons from him that I didn't know at the time would be relevant to my own life until many years later. Since that time, I have met three other people through the years who I felt were "soul mates." Each of them revealed things about myself I needed to learn and broke open pieces of my life that needed to be dismantled. None of these were romantic except one... And ironically the person I married I had no soul connection with at all. I just knew I loved him with all my heart and wanted to spend my life with him.

The beauty about soul mates is that they come in many forms. Some of them come in the form of friends. Some as romantic partners. And some as just a brief encounter. No matter what form they take, they always play an integral role in our lives and leave an imprint on our hearts that last a lifetime. Be grateful for the experience. As painful as it can be to have to let that person go, treasure the gifts they gave you, the lessons they taught you and the love you received while you were with them. There is most likely another soul mate around the corner waiting for your arrival.