Happy Soul Podcast Episode # 8:
Adrenal Burnout and the Defined and Undefined Root Center in Human Design
Welcome to the Happy Soul podcast. My name is Corina Holzapfel. I’m a naturopath and an intuitive
purpose coach for women desiring to live an authentic life – a life filled with joy, happiness, purpose
I believe that we’re all so much more powerful than we can imagine, but to live as our own authentic
self and to use our innate power, we need awareness. I will help you understand who you truly are,
why you think and feel and behave the way you do, and how to live your best life.
We talk about Naturopathy, Positive Psychology, Human Design, Spirituality, Parenting, Relationships,
the Wisdom of Animals and so much more. I can’t wait to share these inspirational talks and
conversations with you. Welcome to the show.
Hello, beautiful soul. I’m so glad that you’re here today, and because you decided to listen to this
episode, I assume that you may have downloaded your free Human Design body graph and now
you’re trying to understand more about what the shapes and the colours actually mean. The Human
Design system consists of nine centers, thirty-six channels and sixty-four gates. And all of them have
a particular meaning. In fact, every one of us has a totally different constellation. And that’s what
makes us so beautifully unique, although we may have some similarities with others because we may
share the same type or the same profile.
Now, if you’ve taken a look at your body graph, you’ve probably seen that some of the shapes are
coloured-in while others are not. Before I share with you what this actually means, let’s take a look at
the centers in general terms. As you can see from your chart, there are actually nine different centers.
And contrary to the Hindu Chakra System, which speaks of only seven chakras, we have nine centers
in Human design, according to Ra Uru Hu, the founder of the Human Design System.
This has to do with the evolutionary process of humanity. The voice, and that’s what he called the
transmission that he received from the universe…it educated him about changes and the human
energy system. He learned that every soul who was born after the year 1781, and that was the time
when the world shifted from the Saturnian to the Uranian cycle…from that time on, humans have been
born with nine energy centers, a more highly evolved form, if you like, instead of the seven.
Part of this mutation took place in the Ajna Center, the so-called third eye, which entirely changed how
our brains take in information. This new energetic make-up has given us the potential to break free of
the fear-based strategies that people were running before. Humans were basically slaves of their
instincts before that time. They were pretty much controlled by their instincts in a way that when, for
example, the knight who was riding his horse in the woods… when he would meet a person in the
forest, his only thought was that of survival.
The people back then didn’t have the capacity to control their minds and emotions in a way that we
can do today. Now, when you look at your chart, again, at the very bottom, you can see the Root
Center. This is the center of physical pressure and fuel. This is the center through which we process
stress and harness our adrenaline. It acts both as a pressure center as well as a motor center, which
basically means that it is both the gasoline and the engine.
And that’s why it’s so, so, so powerful. The root center works together with the Head and the Throat
Centers. When ideas and inspiration come into the Head Center. They are being pushed down through
our other centers until they trigger the Root Center. And here the key is turned. The engine revs up and
pushes the energy up to our throat center so that we can act and actually engage with the idea on the
Now, there is no direct connection between the Root Center and the Throat Center, and that is good
because if there was a direct connection, the energy would come up way too powerful for the throat
and the outside world to handle.
Communication would be very intense and… and very, very difficult, to say the least, and the body
would react with many extreme symptoms. One way, how I notice that I’m pushing myself too hard is
this. If I work long hours and try to push through something, although I know that I would need a
break, that it’s enough and that I should rather pull back and take care of myself – this is when I get a
sore throat. Maybe you can relate?
How often have you felt getting a sore throat when you didn’t get enough sleep or when the pressure
of work and family has become too overwhelming; when there was just too much going on in your
life? This is your body telling you that you need a break; that the pressure coming from your center is
too much for your throat to handle – for your whole body to handle. Do you understand what I’m
And if you would only remember one thing about the Root Center, it is this: the root center is
extremely powerful and there have to be other centers linked between the root and the throat so that
the energy gets channelled in a way that our system can handle it. And here are some more
information on the Root Center for you. In its resting state, the Root Center is all about grounding and
stillness and joy. The Root Center’s energy doesn’t come in waves like, for example, the emotional
energy of the Solar Plexus.
Instead, it rather…. it’s kind of like a pulsation once it’s triggered by inspirational pressure from the
Head Center. On the physical plane, the root is associated with our adrenal glands. This center
houses our adrenaline and it processes our stress. There are nine characteristics that are associated
with this center. They are ambition and joyfulness, but also stillness, contentiousness, restlessness,
limitation, neediness, provocation and imagination. Now, if you push yourself too hard, you can
probably see what is happening.
The pressure from this center is meant to go up and out through the throat. But what happens when
there is too much pressure? It turns inward. And the result?
The result is adrenal burnout, stress-related illness and a host of health problems – health issues that
many, many people suffer from today.
Does this ring an alarm clock for you? It does for me. I burned out my adrenals a couple of times in
my life. But since I’ve known my design, how to channel the energy and how to deal with my open
Root Center, I’m so much better prepared to deal with the pressure in my life. You are probably very
interested to learn what it means if the Root Center is coloured-in and what a white center stands for.
A coloured center is a defined center. And while definition basically means that we are more stable and
grounded in the expression of the specific qualities of a center, if a center is undefined or white, we
are usually not. And more so, if the undefined central doesn’t have any of the numbers, which are the
gates, coloured in within that center. Ra Uru Hu said that the undefined centers that we have in our
chart are the areas where we attend the School of Life.
They are the centers that offer us massive learning potential and expression. The question that I get
asked from my clients oftentimes is, if our open centers show our weaknesses and flaws? But that’s
not the right way to look at it. And it is far from the truth. Our open centers provide us with
tremendous opportunities to grow as a soul and to interact with our environment.
If you have an open Root Center, you are more prone to take on the pressure from your environment
for sure, from the people around you who have high expectations and who expect themselves and
others to really, really push hard.
But once you know about your open center, you can decide to not be affected by it. You can decide
when it is time to take a break; to implement some self-care and to collect yourself in stillness before
you go back to working on whatever it was that you were busy with.
Adrenal burnout is a real problem, too many stress hormones in the system mess up your whole
body. See, your adrenal system works in conjunction with your thyroid, your digestive system, your
reproductive system, your detoxification system and so much more. To talk about how they are
connected is a little bit too much to explain in this episode. And I will keep this topic for another
podcast. But let me tell you this: it is so, so, so, so important for you, especially if you have an open
Root Center to listen to your body; to turn inward; to implement daily self-care rituals for yourself; to
retreat, to recharge and take good care of yourself.
And when I tell my clients this in a reading, some of them ask: can people with a defined center deal
with pressure more easily than people who have an undefined Root Center? And my answer is: it
depends. There are some people with defined Root Centers who are so conditioned to pressuring
themselves into high achievement, but they are prone to adrenal burnout as well.
It all comes down to how we live, our Human Design strategy and authority. If, for example, a
generator woman has a habit of initiating things instead of waiting to respond, she will eventually
burn out even when she has a defined Root Center. Or, if a projector woman tries to push her
knowledge onto people and forces things to happen instead of waiting for the invitation, she will also
burn out after a while if this is a habit of hers.
To sum it all up, our undefined centers offer us massive opportunities and growth potential. These are
the areas that we should cherish the most in our lives and that we should make an effort to
experiment with. Yet, living a happy, healthy and purposeful life…it ultimately comes down to knowing
your Human Design strategy and your authority; and to live and experiment with your design in a way
that considers your individual purpose, your gate and channel activations and using the potential that
they provide for you in this lifetime.
If you are interested in learning more about your unique design, about your activated channels and
gates, your soul purpose and why you act and feel the way you do, I invite you to book a reading with
me. You can find all the information on my website and I will add the link for you in the show notes of
I hope today’s episode has helped you understand your body graph and maybe also your family
members design a little better. Let me know how this has helped you and feel free to share this
podcast with your friends.
I hope you have a beautiful rest of your day. Until the next time. I’m sending you all my love. Take
good care of yourself.
Hey, beautiful soul! Thanks so much for tuning in today. I hope today’s show had great insights, soul
nuggets and wisdom for you. I would love to stay connected with you. I invite you to head on over to
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So that’s it from me, my loves. Feel free to connect with me on social media, also, if you like. You can
find me on Instagram under @CorinaHolzapfel and on Facebook as @CoachCorinaHolzapfel.
Let’s have some soul conversations there about today’s show. And if you feel that your friends will
benefit from listening to today’s show as well, feel free to share it on your social media. I love sharing
inspirational and uplifting content with my friends, and I believe you do as well.
Thanks again for tuning in and I look forward to staying connected to you
If you are interested to learn more about your unique energetic makeup – your activated gates and channels, your purpose and your definition – I invite you to book a reading with me and find out how you can improve your life by living and experimenting with your Human Design.