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Reflecting on 2021 & Building Your 2022 Self-Care Plan Using Human Design

It's that time - a New Year, a fresh start, a clean slate, big energy. Or maybe not, maybe you are still very much processing and healing from 2021. Regardless of where you find yourself I want to remind you there is no 'right' way to do things, especially when it comes to setting intentions, goals, vision boarding or whatever else you find supportive during this time. Human Design reminds us to check in with our inner world, our unique intuition (aka our Authority in HD lingo) and our energy by noticing when we are living out of our most authentic expression.


Oftentimes resolutions or goals are made in the mind, not the body. Without energy to back these plans up, they often fail - in fact, studies show 19% of people keep their planned resolutions. This often then leads to a downhill spiral of self-worth. But I want to remind you that achievement does not equal worth. We are worthy of just merely existing in your current form without needing to react, plan or resolve.


Did you know there are multiple "New Year" cycles? The calendar most of us follow is the Gregorian calendar which was established in the 1500s that follows the January 1st start date. I want to offer you that you get to choose when your New Year begins if January 1st doesn't feel good for you, but maybe it does! You can also choose multiple! Maybe it's the Chinese Lunar New Year on February 1st this year, maybe you follow the rhythm of nature's cycles and astrology and begin your cycle on the Spring Equinox and start of Aeries season (March 21st this year), you can even choose your birth aka your solar return.


The Human Design New Year begins January 21st this year when the sun enters Gate 41 - an initiating energy that is a catalyst for humans to satisfy desires and create new experiences. Before that time, we enter various cycles as the sun passes through the gates of the Mandala between December 30th and January 21st. Interestingly, the last energy before the new year is of letting go & accepting what is (Gate 60). We enter into this gate January 15th, which is a common time people start to let go of resolutions that weren't correct for them to begin with. Is there a correlation? I don't know for certain...I'll let you decide.


Questions to ask during your introspective season (whatever that is for you):

  • What's something you overcame this year?

  • What new self-care activity did you try?

  • What are you celebrating yourself for?

  • What did you learn about yourself?

  • What brought you closer to your true self?

  • Who was impactful in your journey? Who was not?

  • What are you ready to let go of?

  • What is your favourite memory of the previous cycle?

  • Did you find purpose in the last cycle?

  • What worked to bring you closer to your true self? What didn't?

As the energy shifts and we start think about our next cycle, it's important to consider where our intentions are coming from when we are building our self-care plan. Some even find it helpful to associate a feeling to their intentions to help them embody it on a deeper level. In Human Design each of the 5 Energy Types has their own inner body experience of alignment, called the signature. To find out your energy type click here. Below is a very brief description of each type, to learn more about your specific type I offer mini sessions where we review all there is to know about how your energy interacts with the world!



Activity: try grounding yourself into your signature feeling based on your Energy Type below. Where do you feel it in your body? What brings more of this to you? What pushes it away? Create a mantra or intention to help cultivate this feeling in 2022 or let this be your word of the year!

  • Generators - satisfaction

  • Manifesting Generators - satisfaction / peace

  • Manifestors - peace

  • Projectors - success

  • Reflectors - surprise

Next, we can look to the energy centres on our chart. These are the shapes that are either coloured in (called defined centres) or white (called open or undefined centres). Each of these centres relate to an area in our physical body.



Look at the white shapes on your chart - these are areas we are more prone to conditioning from external sources (ie. other people, systems, collective values etc.) that can take us out of our truest expression. When setting intentions and self-care plans it may be helpful to consider these. Interestingly, 70% of the world has an open/undefined heart centre which means many people may create goals or attempt to manifest, usually unconsciously, to prove their worth instead of being from their authentic desires.


Activity: observe your white centres, if you have any. Be gentle on yourself here and journal about these questions for your corresponding centres.

  • Head: Am I acting on other's inspiration?

  • Ajna: Am I pretending I am certain?

  • Throat: Am I trying to be heard or attract attention?

  • G/Identity: Am I questioning my lovability or direction?

  • Heart: Am I trying to prove something?

  • Emotional Solar Plexus: Am I avoiding confrontation or the truth?

  • Spleen: Am I holding onto what isn't good for me?

  • Sacral: Am I noticing when enough is enough?

  • Root: Am I rushing to get things done?

Now that you have a deeper understanding of how you operate from a Human Design perspective, how can you bring awareness to your holistic self-care? Activity: Use your Energy Type, Signature & Open Centres to guide your self-care plan building process in these 7 Realms of Self-Care. You get to decide how and when you focus on these areas, and which you do!

  1. movement

  2. nourishment

  3. environment

  4. finances

  5. relationships

  6. spirituality

  7. mindset


I hope that you find comfort knowing that when you are committed to living your full expression, all you desire will find its way to you. Instead of trying to force, I offer you the permission to surrender to who you really are and what your soul really wants. If you want to share your experiences throughout this post feel free to message me on Instagram @steffsullivan.co or email me at hello@steffsullivan.co - I love hearing from you!


May you get closer to your truest self in 2022.


With love,


Steff Sullivan

3/5 Emotional Manifestor

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