In this episode of the Human Design for Business Podcast, I explained the differences between defined centers, undefined centers, and open centers.  Centers are one aspect of the human design chart. There are three different configurations of centers in the human design chart defined, undefined, and open centers.

Defined centers provide a consistent source of strength and energy, while undefined and open centers receive and amplify energy from others. Gates within undefined centers in human design can be used as anchor points to discern one’s own energy and avoid external influences and conditioning. Open centers in human design allow for fluidity of energy and a wide range of experiences. Overall, understanding and utilizing one’s unique human design blueprint through the centers can lead to more success, joy, and abundance in both live and business. 

Let’s dive into human design centers – defined, undefined, and open explained. 

Human Design Centers Explained – Defined, Undefined, & Open

Today I want to explain the differences between defined centers, undefined centers, and open centers. Let’s get into the Human Design Centers Explained. Centers are one aspect of the human design chart. There are three different configurations of centers in the human design chart defined, undefined, and open centers.

Defined centers provide a consistent source of strength and energy, while undefined and open centers receive and amplify energy from others. 

Gates within undefined centers in human design can be used as anchor points to discern one’s own energy and avoid external influences and conditioning.

 Open centers in human design allow for fluidity of energy and a wide range of experiences.

The Importance of Centers in a Human Design Chart Explained – Defined, Undefined, Open 

When I think about a human design chart, the centers are really sort of this focal point for where a lot of the nuance, depth, and details come from in a human design chart. It’s really a big element in a chart. In each center, there are gates and channels, then each gate and channel is also so associated with a line level. Our centers and the definition of our centers – defined, undefined, and open give life to our unique energetic human design blueprint.

Defined Centers in Human Design – Explained

Defined centers are really this idea that these are your strengths. They’re fixed; they’re static.I like to say you kind of become more of who you are in that energy over time. When we have a defined center, we get a definition because we have one gate coming off of one center. For example, say you had Gate 61 in the head and Gate 24 and the Ajna, which forms a channel, which gives you to definition to these two centers in human design. 

When you think about that, when you have a channel, this is a consistent way for you to access this strength. Anytime you have defined centers, think of that as a strength. That is something that you can tap into on demand. You will, as you age, only become more of who you are in that center. I have found that to be pretty true, particularly when you become aligned with that energy over time. 

Defined centers in the human design system and the channels that create that definition between them discern the strengths that we can consistently on a regular basis tap into. 

We can use those strengths to support other people, develop offers in our business, understand how we’re likely to show up, and understand the optimal expression of that defined center or not. 

Undefined Centers in Human Design – Explained

Undefined centers are centers that are white in your chart, and will have in an undefined center, a gate coming off that. You’ll have just a gate, and that gate doesn’t connect to the center on the other side. 

In an undefined center in human design, you have just a gate. I really think that this is energy that is present, but we can’t necessarily connect to it on demand.

When we think about what an undefined center does and open centers do this as well, these centers take in the energy of those around them and amplify it or mirror it back. In terms of business, this is where you can take in a client’s energy or read their energy.  

When I think about an undefined center, the gate that you have present in that is your energy. I like to call think of it as anchor. In an undefined center, your gates are anchors to help you discern which energy is your own, okay? 

In an undefined center ( & open) in human design, this is where we can get conditioning. We can take on conditioning in an undefined center because we’re taking in the other energies from other people and amplifying it. 

In this undefined center, I’m taking in all this energy and I’m amplifying it back to the people around me. Ultimately these undefined centers in human design, we have to allow that energy to filter through us and not attach to us so we don’t get conditioned by it.

We can use our gates as an anchor point for the energy that is ours in the undefined centers in our human design chart. 

I’ll use myself as an example. I am a projector.  have an undefined sacral center, but I have gate nine and I have five gate nine placements. The theme of gate nine is focus. So I can read my client’s energy in this gate, I can take in their sacral energy, say if they’re a Manifesting Generator or a Generator, I  can discern how best they focus that energy. I can take that in and I run it through my lens of focus. 

Let’s talk about how conditioning happens. But say, for example,  I was with the client, and they had gate five, but I don’t have gate five, right? Gate 5 is about consistency, and likely this person had the whole channel, and I just saw this client, then I’m sitting there trying to plan for the rest of the day, and I’m like, oh, I really got to be consistent. I got to show up consistently, and I’m really pressuring myself around this. The reality is that’s not my energy. That’s the energetic residue left over from the person that I was just with. 

The reality is the gates that we have in these undefined centers give us an anchor point to say, oh, this is our energy, right? This is mine. Everything else, if I’m experiencing something other than that gate nine focus, it’s not mine. 

Another example is If I’m feeling like my husband has gate 34 and he’s a fellow projector. If I’m feeling like I really need to exert my power, probably not my energy; it’s probably his energy there. I need to let that go. 

When we think about conditioning, whether it’s societal or specific people in our lives, cultural norms or generational norms, or whatever it is, that is why some conditioning ultimately turns us into this not self. It’s because we attach to that energy and it stays there. 

If I’m always feeling like I need to be in this gate five consistency, and I don’t have that gate in that undefined center, then I am; there’s a reason why I’m feeling like that, right? 

I’ve had to do a lot of deconditioning work to find self-love and to come to terms with the fact I have an undefined identity center; my purpose is more fluid.  My identity might show up a little bit differently depending on who I am around. 

I share these examples with you because I think when we think about these undefined identity centers, I believe a great way to think about the gates that are present is to look at them as if they are anchors of what is our energy and let go of everything that is not ours. These gates act as an anchor. 

I often see people mistakenly come to the conclusion that this energy that’s here, none of it’s mine. And the reality is an undefined center that isn’t the case. You have strengths there, and you have this ability to take in this information, but you’re not here to attach to it. So that’s the piece that you have to keep in mind when you’re considering an undefined center.

Open Centers in Human Design – Explained

Open centers in human design are the centers that are white, but there’s no gate there. There’s no colored in the gate there at all. It’s just completely open. Open centers function similarly to undefined centers in that they take in information and they amplify it back, or they mirror it back. However, with an open center, there’s no gate there that you anchor to and say this is my energy. 

One of the things that’s really beautiful about both undefined and open centers, but particularly open centers, is that an open center can experience all of the gates inside of that center. If you have an open center, you have the ability to experience all the energy that is in there based on who you are around, based on the transits. The thing that makes that really cool is you have this beautiful fluidity. You have this beautiful fluidity there that can really operate in a great way to read the energy of others. 

When I teach inside any of my programs, I always talk about how our undefined centers read the energy of other people, and then I use the defined center strengths in order to provide consistent support and consistent information to other people based on the energy that I just read.

When there is an open center, we don’t have an anchor there. It’s completely fluid. When it’s completely open, there is fluidity there. We don’t have any way to identify what is ours and what is not. This means that when it comes to the themes of your open centers, you have to understand that none of the energy there is yours. 

In our open centers, we are, from my experience, more susceptible to actually taking on conditioning from other people because we don’t have that anchor point. I often notice that when we think about open centers, they tend to exist in the extremes. They tend to exist on the edges of the theme. So if we think about an open head as an example, an open head is going to be constantly overconsuming or consuming, nothing at all. 

An open solar plexus, as an example, is going to be constantly overly emotional or not emotional at all. Same thing for an open sacral. I’m going to be constantly overworking, overworking, overworking, or completely burned out or, say in a spleen. I’m afraid of everything. I have no relationship with fear whatsoever. I will literally try and do anything. I have no fear. 

When we think about these open centers, they’re living in these extremes more often than not, because we don’t have this ability to anchor ourselves into saying, oh, this is my energy. 

We identify with all of it because we’re taking in the energy of other people and we’re amplifying it. 

How to work with the Undefined and Open Centers Human Design

That is why I spend so much time with the people in my program, talking about how can we actually clear the filter of these centers. How can I clear the energetic filter of this?

How can I clear the energetic residue left behind as part of moving about the world? I talked a bit about this recently on the nutrition podcast. This is where nutrition can come into play. If I’m feeding my body.  I’m aligned to my variables on the digestion side and on the environment side. I’m feeding my body properly. Guess what? I’m less susceptible to the not-self. 

In terms of how do we actually clean these, discard this energy that’s in our bodies from other people in an undefined or open center? That’s really where these practices of grounding and connecting our body come into play. Food obviously is a really big one. Here are some others nutrition, exercise, water intake, getting outside, and connecting with nature. Walking, swimming, singing, and meditating to name a few. There’s so many options. Options here are limitless.

Clearing the Filter & Energetic Residue from Undefined & Open Centers

Here are a few tips for working with undefined and open centers in human design that I often do. I will change my clothes at the end of the day if I’ve had a lot of calls with other people or I’ll take a shower.  As I shower, I  go through a visualization process of washing other people’s energy off me. Alternatively,  I’ll zip up my energy at the beginning of the day. 

It’s all these little practices that we often forget to do where we start to slowly over time, take on conditioning. The reality is we can understand and have the knowledge and the depth of I knowing what a defined center is vs an undefined or open center in human design. 

We actually have to learn how to embody that information and live that information. It’s not enough just to know it. We actually have to become it. We actually have to embody it and integrate it into our being and inhabit it in our ecosystem and in our environment. And the reality is that’s that piece when we get into practice. 

As an example, if you have an open head, journaling might be really helpful for you because you are going to have a very fluid way of thinking about things. That means you’re not going to have a consistent way you process information. If you have a defined head or defined, you’re going to have a very consistent way you process information. Your undefined or open counterparts do not have that. So how can you create some practices for yourself to one, dispel and discharge the energy that’s in there from the people that you’ve been around? And then I think more importantly, how can you get clear so that you’re not taking on this conditioning?

If you are somebody with an open Aja as an example, and you’re constantly around somebody with channel 11-56, you might find yourself picking up those traits of that person. Because you’re taking on that conditioning. The low expression, the 11-56 can exaggerate its stories. Every telling of the story in the gate 56, gets exaggerated more and more and more exaggerated. 

Conditioning and the Centers in Human Design – Open & Undefined 

When we think about how conditioning can take over, it happens slowly over time, and it sort of erodes away at the beautiful fluidity in an open or undefined center. But particularly in open centers, I know this to be a real challenge with people. Oftentimes what happens is we get into these open centers, and people are often labeled. Please note this is not medical advice. I am not a medical professional, please consult your medical doctor. 

For example, at the end of the day, more often than not, when I see open centers appear in their chart and then I hear about it in the real world from them, these extremes that happen for open centers lead people to treat the symptom. For example, in an undefined sacral over activity or ADD/ADHD. Then traditional medicine comes in and prescribes something to treat the symptom but the root of the problem is that the person actually needs to learn to dispel the energy of other people. I’ve seen this with the open emotional centers and bipolar disorder; I’ve seen it with the spleen and phobias. I’ve seen it in the open root with stress. I encourage you to do your due diligence here. 

I believe a lot of times when we have these open centers, we often think that there’s something wrong with us because we don’t necessarily operate in the same way that other people operate. My nine-year-old, he has a completely open sacral. Let me just tell you, this kid runs the extremes from being on to, I just want alone in solitude. Since we know this about him, we work as a family really hard to honor his need for alone time. We honor his need for a sort of space and rest when he needs it. 

All these little nuances, when we think about our centers and our definition, are really important to consider to actually get congruent with our human design. How do we become synonymous with our design? The reality is we not only have to have the knowledge, but we also have to embody it. We must become it, and we inhabit it, and we must bring it into our ecosystem and the environment around us through these practices that allow us to sort of cleanse and clear the filters of our undefined and open centers.

This is what I’m going to leave you with. The defined centers we have gives us access to this energy on demand are on defined centers. In an undefined center, the gates that are present, there are anchors. The anchors say, “Hey, this is mine. This is my energy here, this is mine.” Then we’ve got open centers, which are fluid. 

I think people struggle to see the positives in a an open centers in human design. The reality is when you kind of clear off that conditioning and you kind of dust off all the energetic residue that’s been left behind. I also say the wake of somebody else’s energy. The reality is open centers provide this depth of wisdom because they can experience all of the energy that’s there. There’s a great deal of wisdom, knowledge, compassion, and understanding that can actually emerge from those centers when we can, with more awareness, go into situations with other people as we move about our life with the knowledge of, “Hey, at the end of the day, I got to go clear my energetic filters here.”

Human Design Centers Explained in Summary – Defined, Undefined & Open

When we think about clearing the filters and the energetic residue of his is not something where you do one exercise one time, and you’re good. When you have an undefined and/or open center, you must incorporate a practice or habit into your life. Please do let me know if this resonates or you have any questions. You can post them below. 

P.S. If you want to learn more about the role of the centers in magnetizing your ideal client in business, I invite you to join me for my Ideal Client by Design Workshop.