Soul Plans and Life Themes

Soul Plans and Life Themes

Would you prefer to know when you’re going to die?

At age seven, I had a premonition of my death. It was my turn to read in front of the class when suddenly, everything stopped. I saw myself as a grown-up, with her back turned. I then watched this woman shot to the back of her head. I viewed this calmly, as if it were a movie. Then I heard a voice say, “It will be violent, but it will be short—and then I’ll take you home.”

While I’m naturally curious, I’d rather not know. It would be too easy to become preoccupied with that countdown. This, I know: that voice was drenched in love and compassion. If whomever it belongs to is taking me home, I have nothing to fear.

Frost flowers
Photo by Dmitry Grigoriev

If I had to guess my primary Life Theme, I’d say it’s Boundaries: creating them and defending them. Why does it have to be so hard? 

We wrestle with Boundaries every day, and technology has blurred them like never before (social media has many upsides, but also raises the specter of healthy parameters). In the days of hats and gloves, boundaries seemed simpler and clearer. Polite society avoided discussion of sex, religion, and politics. Today, we tend to overshare the minutia of our lives. 

What might a Life Theme of Boundaries mean from a Soul Plan perspective? Let’s imagine that you came here to work on self-worth. You might be a people-pleaser, spreading yourself thin. In the short term, you feel the other party’s gratitude. Over time, you push down resentment.   

Perhaps you struggle to say no to authority, be that a parent or a boss. Or you overshare on a first date, seeking immediate intimacy. Others struggle to pull back in a relationship, worried that they must continue do as much as possible for others—defining their worth in service—to be needed. It can feel tremendously fearful to do less. But in stepping back, they are also gifting the other person a chance to better meet their own needs. We all seek to be loved first for who we are, not what we do. On the Other Side, we are loved unconditionally; we belong unconditionally. Here, even the warmest relationships can feel a bit transactional.

Witer frost flowers
Photo by freestocks

Sometimes the Universe will use our passions and wrap a lesson in Boundaries around them. That passion might be a person, a hobby or business venture. It becomes all-consuming, but we love it: we’re fully immersed! When it reaches a tipping point, we face a choice. For example, the place where we volunteer will likely take all the hours we can give—do we meet their needs, or draw a line in the sand to meet our own? 

Consider the key people in your life. What if they are playing a role that you scripted for them? What if they are making excessive demands on your time, energy, and resources, to trigger your Boundaries muscle?

Are Angels and Spirit Guides different? 

During my OBE (out-of-body experience), I saw that angels and spirit guides were different celestial beings. I willingly concede that they appeared as I was raised to picture them, with the angels having wings. I believe that we often experience a version of the Other Side that feels familiar and comfortable. The Other Side is so vast and nuanced, it can present in ways which are tailor-made for us.

Winter Snow Flowers
Photo by Heye Jensen

Angels and Guides work together. They support the soul they were assigned to watch over, as it designs its upcoming life. Of course, that guidance continues after birth.

When a loved one passes, we often think and speak of them as our angel, watching us from above. And they do stay close. But angels are their own form of the divine. I accept that they might incarnate briefly (‘… entertaining angels unawares’), but do not usually take human form for an entire lifetime. 

Spirit Guides, as I understand, have lived multiple lives as humans. This makes them well-positioned to keenly appreciate the pressures, desires, disappointments, and ambitions inherent in a human life. They have experienced myriad relationships, whether sources of joy, or pain or conflict. This equips them with powerful insights to guide a soul who is planning to come to earth.

In tandem, angels and spirit guides form a powerful team to guide us.

Three years ago, I learned I was adopted. My birth mother was not a scared teenager. She was in grad school, and my birth father wanted to marry her. She had options. What do Soul Plans say about adoption?

I sense your pain, and I am sorry. Adoption goes to the heart of a person’s identity: who am I? Where do I belong? Why did she (or they) give me up?

Photo by Galina

From the Soul Plan perspective, I believe adoption as a Life Theme is something that only an advanced soul would contemplate. I appreciate that might be cold comfort. I share it to highlight and honor the depth of your soul’s wisdom and your ability to not only weather this, but to emerge even stronger. At its core, adoption is an internalized experience of rejection.

At the same time, this Life Theme is brimming with chances to explore self-worth, identity, forgiveness and belonging. You learned a truth that I imagine was shocking and raw, both at the time it surfaced and for months afterwards. I hope it was not revealed in the heat of the moment.

What if you planned this experience of being an adopted child? Rather than having this happen to you, what if this unfolded by your own design? What lessons might you have planned, and what insights surfacing? Are you able to work toward (more) compassion and understanding for your birth mother? Might you be willing to consider a relationship, if that is possible? If not, might you find peace with the limited information you have? Your soul is standing by with loving support as you navigate this as a human being.

Let’s also imagine your mother’s Soul Plan for a moment. If she designed to experience an unplanned pregnancy, what circumstances did she find herself in? I appreciate she wasn’t a teenager, but was she no less shocked or isolated? Did she face tremendous family pressure, was she encouraged to be clear-eyed in her assessment of the life she could offer you? She might have loved your birth father deeply, but that wouldn’t necessarily mean that he, or they, could have provided the opportunities she wanted for you.


This post is part of our series of blogs on soul plans by Alicia Young. You can read her previous posts HERE.


Alicia Young is an Australian broadcast journalist and author who met her guardian angel at age three. She has written six awarding-winning nonfiction books (and is working on her seventh title). The latest, Visit from Heaven: A Soul’s Message of Love, Loss & Family recounts a transformative experience in which she met the soul of a little boy on the Other Side. Today, she speaks and consults on Soul Plans around the world, both privately and to groups (often virtually, in a Covid-19 world). Learn more at Alicia welcomes your questions at: (her central email address). This column does not seek to substitute professional support.