Whether you've felt incredibly close soul ties with family members, partners, or your best friends, you'll know how powerful it can be.
But what can you do to move on, when a relationship ends and you're left with that sense of connection?
The feeling you're left with is linked to something called a soul tie, and with time and effort, you can let go of it in a safe, healthy way.
We'll start by developing the idea of soul ties in more depth, looking at how you might identify one and how they change your life.
Most importantly, we'll then move on to help you break a soul tie after a relationship ends. We'll outline an effective three-step process you can follow, offering examples of what each step might look like for you.
Finally, we'll close with a brief exploration of what you can do when you're ready to attract the next deep relationship into your life.
In the simplest terms, a soul tie is a link between yourself and someone you struggle to imagine life without.
You might sometimes hear it call a spiritual connection or a soul bond, but the key notion is that you experience a profound intimacy with this person and a desire to keep them close.
Unfortunately, we can have and negative soul ties.
Our connections to others don't depend on their moral goodness or even their suitability for us.
That means that at some point, we may need to deliberately sever a soul tie to take care of our own well-being.
The good news is that many such connections are positive soul ties.
We may feel one with a sibling who provides lifelong support, or the partner with whom we want to start a family.
Whether you've been soul tied in a way that is healthy or unhealthy for you, the main signs are the same:
Unhealthy soul ties tend to arise in cases where the other person is no longer good for you.
Consequently, you see them most often at the end of a relationship, when a breakup has occurred but the underlying connection still lingers (often for years).
You may genuinely believe you are better off without this person, but nevertheless, feel bereft without them.
Symptoms of soul ties that may need to be broken include:
Where a soul tie should bring joy and fulfillment, in cases like the above your soul tie is actually holding you back.
But how do you move on from a connection this deep?
The best way to break soul ties for good is to follow a three-step plan that helps you move on in a self-compassionate, healthy way.
You'll know in yourself when it's time to make this move. Sometimes, people need longer than others to come to terms with the idea of this loss.
However, on the other side, there is a world of opportunity and the possibility for wonderful connections that are just as deep as the one you've left behind.
The first step is coming to terms with the fact that you're still holding onto this old relationship, and deciding that you want to make a change.
There are many reasons to hide from this reality, ranging from a lingering hope of reconciliation to fear of what will happen if we step into the unknown.
In addition, soul ties are like anything else that can form addiction in us. We can become dependent on our soul ties – or thoughts about those ties – to regulate our emotions, and we can feel adrift without those people.
What does the discovery stage look like? It might involve admitting your difficulties to a friend or therapist, or perhaps you're more comfortable writing in a journal.
These are important ways of better understanding what's happening in you – what you're feeling, and what you need. However, to actually go on to break a soul tie, you need to do more than simply discuss the situation.
Helpful early actions to take include removing the person from your everyday life – for example, you should avoid keeping up with their social media profiles and remove their number from your phone.
Secondly, we now know that a major reason why we end up stuck with old soul ties is a failure to forgive.
Typically, you'll need to work on both forgiving yourself and forgiving the other person.
Think of this as a way of getting rid of “emotional debts” that keep soul ties alive.
To forgive the past, write down what you haven't yet moved past. Is it the time you were cruel in an argument? Is it that you feel you wasted years of your life on someone who hurt you? Write down one reason to forgive each of these things.
Eventually, you must go cold turkey, cutting the soul tie by removing all traces.
For example, look for reminders in your home and get rid of them.
Whether they are gifts, mementos, or photos, the longer they are there then the longer the soul tie will remain.
The other aspect of this process involves letting go of contingency plans.
Have you held onto tickets for a future event you were meant to attend together, just in case?
Are you avoiding the dating scene just so that you might be free if your soul tie wishes to return?
Act as if you no longer have the soul tie, and it will gradually disintegrate.
It's always painful when we build relationships only to lose them. It's especially difficult if we're letting go of a soul tie to someone who really made us feel seen and loved – at least for a time.
However, true kindred spirits will go the distance, and the ending of your last relationship is a sign that your true soul mate is yet to be discovered.
What can you learn from a relationship that didn't work? It's likely there's a lot – for example, maybe you need a partner who better supports your career, or perhaps you need someone who is more distinct from you.
The Law of Attraction teaches us that if we hold all of this in mind – all we want from a partner – we can attract the right person into our lives.
By visualizing them, affirming that we deserve love, and working every day to boost our vibration, we can finally manifest the love we really deserve.