According to Michael, there are five cycles on the Physical Plane (infant, baby, young, mature, old) with seven levels within each cycle. There are two cycles (Astral and Causal) on the planes immediately beyond the Physical Plane. It usually takes more than one life to complete a level.
For each level, you chose Overleaves by selecting from one of seven Goals, one of seven Modes, one of seven Attitudes, and one of seven Obstacles; these Overleaves, plus factors such as Centering, Male/Female Energy Balance and Body Type, allow each Essence to experience a great variety in all of its lives and helps to shape our unique personalities.
In addition, there are seven different Roles for Essence to choose from: Artisans, Kings, Priests, Sages, Scholars, Servers, and Warriors. The Role is chosen in order to have one set of characteristics that evolves over an entire cycle of lifetimes. The choice of Role determines the nature of experience and perception, the part which the Essence will play throughout its cycle. The Role is not limiting, however, since all of life can be experienced through any Role.
One of the most common initial objections to the Michael System is, "I don't like being put in a box," or "I don't like systems that label people as being limited to this or that." We would like to remind you that the purpose of the system is not to limit or confine anyone to specific behaviors. Rather, Michael gives insight about which of all possible patterns we will habitually use. Remember that you are not limited by your Overleaves, rather, your Role, Goal, Mode, Attitude, Obstacle, Centering, Male/Female Energy Balance, and Body Type, work together to define who you are and how you interact with others. Furthermore, it can be mathematically determined that there are more Role, Overleaf and Essence Twin combinations than there are human beings on the planet. So, if you feel you are in a category, that category is individual to you alone!