Wired This Way

Human Design Chart Fragment

Human Design is a mixture of Western and Eastern astrology, Kabbalah, and other things, and is a beautiful tool to help you know how you’re wired. I only discovered it last year, and it’s put me on a fast track to knowing myself and what I need.

Through Human Design, I’ve found out I’m a “generator,” which means I’m meant to hold space and support others. To hold back for the right moment, rather than act impulsively or churn stuff out quickly or win arguments—those things leave me soooo frustrated.

Human Design also tells me I’m a “quadruple split definition.” Only 0.5% of the population is wired this way. I won’t get into the mechanical details of what this is, or we’d quickly get lost. There’s so much on the Internet about Human Design if you want to geek out. There’s not much out there about this particular definition however, so I joined a Facebook group where generous folks helped me figure some things out.

To simplify grossly, a quad split has four different personalities (“channels”), all steering in different directions thinking about things in their own way. Because we have four different perspectives, quads process things slowly. It takes a lot of brainpower to make a decision. I like to think this is why I eat all the time, and why my Mom often calls out to me, “Earth to Stephen!” It’s probably also why I’m a writer by profession, a discipline that lets me mull things over until I can get it just right.

Since quad thought processes are so involved, if we aren’t careful we blurt out random things that make people go “whaaaat??” It may seem like we are out in left field, but we do have to check out the entire ball park before we can make up our minds. To my horror, I find that sometimes people act on my words even though I’m still only at Step 1 in figuring it out. I’m learning to keep my mouth firmly shut until I fully know what I’m talking about.

Because we are always processing, quad splits tend to be self-contained and a bit locked down. For example, reading novels or watching movies is a lot of work for me, because I dwell on every detail, processing it multiple ways. It’s exhausting and keeps me awake at night thinking about it, so I’m very selective in what I read or watch.

I wasn’t sure at first whether to pity myself or be excited by the quad split label. But knowing I was wired this way put in motion some big changes. I no longer force myself to make quick decisions unless they’re easy and obvious. I’ve conditioned myself to slow down and sleep on things. I trust that when the answer finally comes, it’s awesome and awesomely me.

By knowing that I’m uniquely wired to be this way, I honour others more for their own unique wiring. I no longer fear otherness in myself or in other people. I try hard not to envy, judge, or compare. I don’t stress over not doing things that are meant for other people to do.

I’m on a fast track now to knowing who I am and what I need, and that’s a great feeling. With this confidence, I am opening myself up more to the magic of new things and new people. I still have frustrating days, but they are getting fewer. Thanks, Human Design!


Note: I’ve switched web host providers because the other one was so painfully slow.  A big callout to my friend Erica H who moved me to hers and rescued me from purgatory. I’ve been able to freshen things up a bit and look forward to posting with ease, not dread. I haven’t changed the copy of earlier blog posts, other than removing those pretentious “The Point Being” conclusions.


It’s hard to rise above the conditioning that I will never be good enough, that this is a world of scarcity, that I live in a dystopia. But I’m getting there! Those stories are unfortunately true, in some people’s worlds, but in my own world there is love, creation, beauty, kindness, synchronicities. I try to focus on those things, to have gratitude.

I learn to be kind to myself. To be kind to others. To shut out the static and just breathe. To enjoy my body, my surroundings, my friends. To engage more with those who are flesh and blood, engage less with the ideas out there in the ether that aren’t real. The temptation to get stuck in an artificial mental state can be overwhelming. But that’s part of the world we live in, so I let it go and keep on learning.

I learn, with practice, to let my mind have fun engaging with the ether but not to take it all that seriously. In a vast cosmos where I am but a casing of water and dust on a thin rocky surface floating on magma, all those thoughts, those words, those ideas, those “isms,” those “truths” just can’t matter that much. They are but air: breathed in with urgency today, exhaled and dissipated tomorrow.

There are a few truths I live by. I choose to have love for others, not hate. I aim to do the least harm. I get more out of opening myself up than closing myself shut. I can always find joy and amazement. When I zone into the moment, it’s beautiful.

I surrender what’s not working for me outside of these truths.


My anger flares at the latest outrage,
Siren chants: war, death, disease, destruction.
Who to blame? Do I need liposuction?
I toss my device, my unease lingers.
I stare at the wall. Silent. Dissecting.
I breath in the air breathed before by those
I’m told to hate. I breath in deep, connect.
Exhale the stale, inhale the new. Release.
I surrender fear. It keeps me silent.
I surrender rage. I can do nothing.
I surrender pride. It holds me hostage.
I surrender thoughts. Let them float away,
They won’t interfere with my growing heart.
I choose love instead. Love can’t be taken.

Inspiration: Everyone out there forging a new world.