• Allie Beckmann

A Beginner's Guide to Human Design

understanding your human design chart

Who am I, really?

What is my purpose?

How can I become the best, most authentic version of myself?

There exists a wide variety of modalities that can offer us perspective and insight into our innate and learned ways of being. Meyers-Briggs, western and Vedic astrology, Ayurveda, and Enneagram, are a few that have become popular throughout the years. The latest on our radar? Human Design.

What is Human Design?

Though a relatively newer system, Human Design helps you understand your personality type, how you move through the world and make decisions, and how you might be susceptible to conditioning in a manner that leads you away from your authentic nature.

Human Design was created by a man named Ra Uru Hu. Born Alan (Robert) Krakower in Montreal, Canada, Ra Uru Hu had a mystical experience in 1987 in which he encountered “a Voice, an intelligence far superior to anything he had ever experienced.” Over the course of eight days and nights, Ra received the information that became the Human Design System we use today.

The Human Design System is made up of many different ancient and modern sciences ranging from the Chinese l’ching, western zodiac, Kabbalah, and the chakra system to biochemistry, quantum mechanics, and genetics.

It also relies heavily on the physics of neutrinos, streams of tiny particles that the sun and stars emit into space and which flow through our atmosphere and bodies at a pace of trillions per second.

According to Jovian Archive, an organization founded by Ra Uru Hu which holds the exclusive rights of Human Design, "neutrinos have an infinitesimally small amount of mass, as the stream passes through us it leaves information. It is a stream of information, and within each of us exist particles that connect us to the stream. At the moment of birth, we are imprinted by the information carried by the neutrino stream via the planets. This imprint is reflected within your Human Design Chart, and determines your particular Design. This information provides us with the knowledge to understand our nature, potential, and forms of interaction.”

How to Read Your Human Design Birth Chart

Similar to astrology charts, you need your date of birth, location, and time to create your unique Human Design birth chart. At first, reading your chart may feel intimidating – there's definitely a lot going on. There are different professionals available who can help you make sense of your chart. In the meantime, here are some key areas to focus on as you set out to read and understand it on your own.

Kharissa Forte Human Design Chart

Key Elements

After your chart is created, you'll see your Human Design Chart and your Chart Properties. Your Human Design Chart is a map of sorts in which the Chart Properties provide understanding. The elements of the Chart Properties are:


Your Type represents your energy, how you move through the world. Moreover, it “reveals how we can approach decisions in a way we can trust.” There are four types: Manifestor, Generator (which can sometimes be Manifesting Generator), Projector, and Reflector.


Existential Question: Who do I impact?

Manifestors make up about 9% of the population and repel others. These are the people who make things happen. Manifestors have the ability to start projects and work independently. They need to make an impact on the world and are happy when working alone and doing things their way.

Manifestors aren't really team players. They're great at starting projects, but not so much at completing them. (In fact, they're known for passing the baton to Generators.) For that reason, they can benefit from the energetic and creative support of others.


Existential Question: Who am I?

Generators are the largest group and attract others. Generators are the builders of the world with tremendous amounts of energy and life force. While very powerful, Generators are very vulnerable. When they let someone in, they let them all the way in. If they aren't careful they'll find themselves committing to projects or relationships that don't really serve their highest good.

For the Generator, everything is either yes or no, black or white, up or down, right or wrong. Waiting isn't a concept Generators comprehend or know how to do, but learning to do so should be taken seriously.


Existential Question: Who are you?

Projectors are the second largest group after Generators. They have a knack for understanding others and seeing people for who they are without soaking up or driving away their energy, which makes them incredible leaders. Projectors operate best in one-on-one social settings.

Once a Projector gets going, it's hard for them to stop. Rest is a learned skill for these types and needs to be prioritized, especially since they typically lead Manifestors and Generators who need help ensuring their energy is given to the right things at the right time.


Existential Question: Who is different?

Reflectors are rare, making up approximately 1% of the population. They are highly attuned and receptive to the people and places around them. Their energy is naturally self-protectant which intuitively guides them to know what's safe and what's not.

With Reflectors, you get what you give. They serve as the heart of a community or friendship circle. They observe with openness and can play a chameleon role, being whatever they need to be at any point and time.


Strategy guides our ability to make efficient decisions and understand how we are susceptible to conditioning from the outside world. Each type utilizes a specific Strategy. While Strategy may seem simple enough, it's not always easy. The key here is to realize that once we understand our “susceptibility, we no longer habitually create circumstances that force us to confront situations and energies we are not equipped to handle – bringing about changes that can remove resistance and unease.”

For example, the Strategy of Projectors is to wait for the invitation. Projectors have a lot of advice to give. The key is making sure the advice they give is solicited and asked for.

Not-Self Theme

Your Not-Self Theme is the indicator that you're not implementing your Strategy and, consequently, aren't in alignment with your true self.

For example, the Not-Self Theme of Manifestors is anger. It's important for Manifestors to observe how their energy impacts others as they naturally have a closed-off, repelling aura that can make others feel uncomfortable. Because they're designed to act on their own, anger is a common reaction when anything or anyone gets in their way.


Your Signature is the result of implementing your Strategy. It's the opposite of your Not-Self Theme and serves as an indicator that you're living in full alignment with your true self.

For example, the Signature of a Generator is satisfaction. When Generators learn to wait and respond as opposed to instinctively reacting, they find a greater sense of fulfillment.

Inner Authority

Your Inner Authority reflects how you make decisions. It's the internal guidance system that lets you know when something is healthy for you or not. Combined with Strategy, it becomes the foundation of your ability to break free from patterns of conditioning which will lead you toward making decisions that are in alignment with your true nature.

Your Inner Authority will correspond to a major energy center in the body. Because each center has its own unique process of knowing and discerning, discovering your own Inner Authority will lead you toward a more objective understanding of how you take in and respond to information and experiences. This knowledge can then unlock your conditioned habits and open the door to greater ease, fulfillment, and truth in every aspect of your life.


There are 12 possible Human Design profiles: 1/3, 1/4, 2/4, 2/5, 3/5, 3/6, 4/6, 4/1, 5/1, 5/2, 6/2, and 6/3. A Profile is a numerical set that defines the essence of your existence. For example, people with a 5/1 Profile are creative rebels who are here to make an impact beyond the scope of their immediate circle or peer group and are effective in doing so because research is the foundation of whatever they create.


When it comes to how we move in relationships with others, that's when Definition comes into play. There are four types of definitions: Single Definition, Split Definition, Triple Split Definition, and Quadruple Split Definition. Each one has its own unique style in terms of how we interact and what we look for in relationships.

Incarnation Cross

Coupled with the Profile, the Incarnation Cross defines our purpose in life. With 192 possibilities, the Incarnation Cross is derived from the position of the Sun and Eart in our birth chart.

The Bottom Line

Human Design is another tool we can add to our toolbox that can help us develop a greater understanding of who we are and why we do the things we do. If you're curious, check out your chart and see what comes up for you. With greater awareness comes freedom through the power of choice - we get to choose which direction we go, how we move through the world, and how we leave a mark on the people and places around us.

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