An online, self-paced course

Mindfulness and self compassion can directly release the bind of the harmful habits that often rule our lives.  

When our basic needs for love, understanding and safety are not met, we pursue substitute gratifications. Whatever our substitute, it blocks us from satisfying our deepest aspirations for loving relationship and spiritual realization.

Some substitutes are largely socially accepted, such as overachieving, overextending ourselves, trying to check more and more things off the list. Some private habits, like obsessive thinking or spending many hours every day gaming or browsing online, may go unnoticed.

Other behaviors draw more disapproval (causing us to work harder at keeping them hidden), because everyone can see the damage they do: addictions to alcohol or other substances, gambling, shopping, sex, overeating, violence, and so on.

Whichever attachment or addiction we find ourselves caught in, as long as we keep pursuing them and shaming ourselves for doing so, we can’t free ourselves in a deep way.

The good news is that the way we pay attention dramatically affects the structure of our brain and the function of our body, mind and heart. Any time an obsessive thought or a craving arises, if we can learn how to pause just long enough to attend to the feeling of it, we can step out of its trance. And when the self-judge and shame arise, we can learn to hold ourselves with a healing compassion. 

Meditation directly de-conditions habitual grasping - what’s sometimes called the “hungry ghost” syndrome – and allows us to reconnect to our natural intelligence and creativity, and our awakened heart.  

Who might benefit from this course?

  • Anyone with an addiction or habit they just can’t break (opioid or other drugs, smoking, sugar, … etc.)
  • Anyone suffering from obsessive thoughts or compulsive behaviors
  • Anyone who feels out of control in some aspect of their life


What will I learn?

  • Understand where harmful habits come from and how they become entrenched
  • Pause and sense what’s going on when a craving arises, instead of judging it or giving in to it
  • Step out of the cycle of hating, blaming and shaming ourselves
  • Come back to connectedness
  • Sustain positive change
  • Really be here for the moments of deep beauty in life that make it all worthwhile

Healing Harmful Habits & Addictions

  • Contains 22 video lessons of 5–15 minutes each. 
  • All videos are closed captioned and transcripts provided.
  • An online, self-paced course, you will retain lifetime access.


This course was previously offered on Udemy. If you have taken this course on Udemy and don’t want to take it again, please explore some of the other courses here.

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Watch Intro Video

Introduction to the Course (Sample Video):

Using meditation to reconnect with your natural intelligence and creativity, and your awakened heart.

Tara Brach

Tara Brach holds a PhD in Clinical Psychology and teaches meditation internationally. Founder of the Insight Meditation Community of Washington, DC (IMCW), Tara is the author of the bestselling Radical Acceptance, True Refuge, Radical Compassion and her latest book, Trusting the Gold. For over 40 years, Tara has been exploring the interface of Buddhist and Western psychology in addressing the great suffering that arises when we close our hearts to ourselves and others. Tara's weekly podcasts are downloaded over 2 million times each month. Along with her colleague Jack Kornfield, Tara offers a certification program for mindfulness teachers with participants from more than 50 countries.

Course Curriculum

  • 1

    INTRODUCTION

    • Welcome!

    • Getting Started

    • Meditation and Addiction - Introduction and Overview

  • 2

    Section 1: Attachment: An Overview

    • Lecture 1 - Desire Is Necessary; Clutching Is Painful

    • Lecture 2 - "I Should Be Able to Control It"

    • Lecture 3 - Practice Exercise: Power in Witnessing the Wanting

  • 3

    Section 2: What Blocks Our Access to Happiness

    • Lecture 4 - Chasing After So Many Things

    • Lecture 5 - The Encouraging Truth About Desire

    • Lecture 6 - How Habit Operates

    • Lecture 7 - Practice Exercise: Missed Moments?... How We Live the Day

  • 4

    Section 3: Awareness Waking Up

    • Lecture 8 - Hole in the Soul

    • Lecture 9 - Coming Back to Connectedness

    • Lecture 10 - Removing the Layer of Blame

    • Lecture 11 - Keys to Sustaining Habit Change (with Case Study, I)

    • Lecture 12 - Practice Exercise: Fresh Possibilities

  • 5

    Section 4: Healing the Compulsion to Consume

    • Lecture 13 - A Most Popular "False" Refuge

    • Lecture 14 - Tara's Own Experience

    • Lecture 15 - Points of Definition

    • Lecture 16 - It's Not Our Fault

    • Lecture 17 - Deeper Intent

    • Lecture 18 - Neuroplasticity: Good News

    • Lecture 19 - Practice Exercise: The Message You Want to Remember

  • 6

    Section 5: Realizing Full Aliveness

    • Lecture 20 - R.A.I.N. Interrupts the Addictive Process (with Case Study, II)

    • Lecture 21 - Stronger the Addiction, Greater the Potential Freedom

    • Lecture 22 - Practice Exercise: Receiving What We Most Want

  • 7

    ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

    • COURSE COMPLETION, ADDITIONAL RESOURCES, FEEDBACK AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

Healing Harmful Habits & Addictions

Join Tara in this online, self-paced course.