Kate's Blog

Drinking Is Hard – It’s Not The Easy Option

I was at an event recently where one of the speakers said something that I’ve been thinking about ever since.

She said, “If you choose the easy path, life will end up being hard for you. If you choose the hard path, life will wind up easy.”

I can’t stop thinking about how perfectly this sums up the choice to drink or not drink. Drinking seems like the easy option when you’re pouring that first glass: but actually, drinking is hard – it’s the tough choice.

If you’re tempted to drink tonight, watch this video first…

Key points

Drinking is hard – it’s the difficult choice

Cracking open a bottle might seem easy in the moment, but feeling hungover is hard. Feeling disappointed in yourself is hard. Letting other people down is hard. Not being able to fully participate in your life is hard. Never having the energy or headspace to change your life – that’s also hard.

Sobriety gets a bad rap

Culturally we have this story about sobriety being very hard, full stop. The truth is, it’s hard in the beginning. It does require work to do something different, change a pattern, let a craving pass, figure out another way to meet your needs. That requires effort, of course. But it’s not like that forever.

A sober life is an easy life

I look back on my drinking days and I can see now how hard I made things for myself! I don’t think I’m cut out for that anymore. Kudos to you if you are drinking and still keeping life going and your head above water: that takes some work! If you can do that, you can absolutely figure out how to quit. 

Next time you’re tempted to drink…

Ask yourself: “Do I want this hard glass of wine?” Or the 24 hours that begin as soon as you open the bottle? Are you really up for that? We have to break this association between wine and self-care, wine and looking after yourself. Drinking is hard, it’s the painful choice.

Focus on this

Why is sobriety the easy choice? Start writing a list of reasons. The chances are, you spend a lot of time thinking about why it’s so hard, but not much time talking up the other side of this. Scroll down and let me know in the comments – why is alcohol-free living the EASY choice in the long term? Let’s get a great list going here!

Want some help to create an alcohol-free life you love? Click here to learn more about my Getting Unstuck course.

Hi, I'm Kate

I founded The Sober School to show you there’s another way out of your shame that doesn’t involve AA or rehab. 


32 Responses

  1. Sat here on my own,( I’m a widow ) rain is lashing down outside, I have been to the gym today, and kept myself busy, but now is the hardest time for me, early evening, I know I have felt better the last few days, not had drink since friday, consumed a bottle and half of wine, Saturday was hungover, wasted day. It’s really hard not to have just one glass.

    1. Hi, I am a widow too; I moved to be closer to my sons and met an amazing group of fun ladies whom I adore and who have saved me from loneliness but they love to drink and go out a lot. When I am with parts of my family who are sober I don’t think about wine and feel so good when I wake up—life is so much easier when you wake up thinking of a million things and not regrets and anxiety about what you did or said when you had that third glass of wine. But my dilemma is how to be with my friends and be sober, how to take the hard route…especially when I associate them with saving me from the loneliness of such great loss. I so agree with you Wendy that it’s so hard to have one glass, so hard not to have any, but so easy when I look back at several days without and realize how sort of simpler those days were, less ridden with misery for sure.

      1. Hi Molly, I think you will find that your friends genuinely care about you, not what is in your glass. Life is so much easier without alcohol. Having none is easier than having one for sure.

        1. I can’t stop thinking about the easy path vs the nard one. Like when I literally had to drag my 6 year old son to tennis rec camp rather than allow him to play video games on summer mornings and he grew up realizing he could happily join groups and play sports to feel good throughout his life. That day I felt like I was dirt and the worst mother in the world and later felt like it was so worth the angst to see him grow such confidence.
          I know my friends will be able to handle my not drinking but it’s going to be hard!! But I know I intellectually it is so right.

  2. Really find this useful and yes I will not drink tonight because I don’t want to feel regret, Anxiety, sadness, fear tomorrow morning.

  3. Hi Kate,
    I’m going to rewatch it again tonight . Being sober is easier as
    Energy, feeling and looking better. Give 100% to the Day!
    Many more reasons I think as well ….
    Thank you for motivating me!!

  4. This is so true. I regret drinking yesterday, I had some family over for Sunday Lunch, we had roast beef and I always associate a glass or two of Red Wine with roast beef! So the bottles kept opening, between my brother and I and the dread and the awful hangover kicked in about 2am! I’ve spent all day nursing a hangover but have waited all day to open Kate’s message and video for this week. I’m looking so forward to relaxing with a cuppa tonight, going to bed knowing I haven’t had alcohol today, and I’m looking forward to waking up tomorrow morning feeling better again. I just wished so much that feeling would last and I could always just push alcohol aside and look forward to my cup of tea of an evening. I just dread the next few days of possibly going back to having a drink again when the hangover feeling is forgotten! I really really just want to stick to this and go sober for at least a month, to get the proper benefits. Thanks again Kate for your inspiring words. x

    1. It’s easy to forget that alcohol is an addictive substance and therefore a completely normal response is to drink more than we know is good for us. This is why my recommendation is to take an educational six week break from booze so I can show you just how good an alcohol-free life can be. Find out more about how I can help you on my online course called ‘Getting Unstuck’ (and it’s called that for a very good reason)! https://thesoberschool.com/course/

  5. It is easier to choose sobriety because the benefits. For example more money on your pocket….less weight on your hips


  6. What you say is so true. I have been AF for 14 months now and life is certainly easier. I only have to make one decision and that’s not to have alcohol. Before there were so many arguments and decisions going on in my head it was exhausting. It was the best decision I have ever made. Thank you Kate.

    1. I totally agree. I am 11 months and 11 days alcohol free. I agree that the arguments inside your head whether you should drink or not drink are exhausting. My body thanks me everyday for not drinking. And as I am older (68) it’s easier not drinking because my health is so much better and I am better health wise. Thank you so much

  7. Choosing sobriety is still hard for me. I have been basically sober for over 3 years. You say after the first week or two it gets easy. I am in an environment were others I live with drink regularly and alcohol is readily available. I know resisting alcohol is hard but it is the right choice for me. I really don’t think it will ever be the easy choice.

    1. Staying sober in a boozy world is a sign of strength Joan, well done you. 🙂 If you ever need a community of like minded, strong women to talk to, please come and work with me where you will be welcomed with solidarity and understanding. Here are just some of the comments from my previous students: https://thesoberschool.com/success-stories/

  8. I think AF living would be amazing, no more daily battles of wine or no wine, no more hangovers or anxiety or regrets. It’s a no brainer not to drink! I just wish I could stop.
    This is a great video.

  9. Staying sober is not easy at first but so worth it. My anxiety decreased and I started to feel all the incredible benefits of a sober life.
    Not the easy path but ultimately the better path as I have given myself the gift of living.

  10. Best thing I ever did was taking the Unstuck course. I stopped 6 months ago and haven’t looked back. Life is so much more enjoyable being alcohol free. I recommend Kate’s course to anyone interested in stopping.

  11. I was sober for four years. Stupidly I thought I was healed of my addiction and could become a ‘social’ drinker. That lasted about a month and then I went straight back to my bottle of wine a night habit. My husband gave up drinking a year after me but it wasn’t for good reasons. He was happy to go back to drinking. Now I’m stuck in a cycle of drinking every night again. I think it’s harder this time around because I know it is going to be at least six months before I can sleep well and lose the craving. I need the strength to persevere.

    1. I’m a great believer that we’re not meant to do the hard things in life alone Jacqueline, so join my community of like minded women and receive the support and guidance to make sobriety ‘stick’ once and for all. No strength required with my educational and empowering approach, just an open mind and a commitment to give sobriety a chance for six weeks. ❤️ https://thesoberschool.com/course/

      1. Thanks Kate for this inspiring message I am 6 months sober, but already I was thinking about the festive season and thought maybe I could have a wine with Xmas Dinner, the thought has been popping in and out my head for a couple of weeks now.
        After watching the video I don’t think i will bother I need to remember where I was and just how far I have come.
        You are so right sober is the easy choice you don’t have to think about it spending time thinking about maybe I will I don’t think about drinking when I know I definitely don’t want to, Time is so very precious I don’t want to waste it thinking about drinking again.
        I will remain in the sober squad it’s probably going to be challenging but nothing worth having is easy (we’ll said)
        Thankyou for being inspiring

        1. Great choice to stick with the ‘sober squad’ – it is the easier option by far. Between now and Christmas, try some of the delicious alcohol-free alternatives out there to have with dinner. The market has exploded in the last few years due to demand 🙂

  12. Going AF took some effort at first…it wasn’t HARD so much as uncomfortable. But well over a year later it hardly makes a ripple in my mind. Booze is gross… makes me sick, obnoxious, depressed & so mean to myself! I feel like a powerful sober badass, & many a hard-drinking friend has expressed curiosity about the journey & possibility. Take that break, detox your body & explore your habits & thoughts about alcohol, feel the simply, wholesome power of an AF life. And maybe, as happened for me, “Poof!”…the spell will be broken. It’s SOOO sweet on the other side of drinkng!

  13. Being sober is so so so so much is here much less embarrassing much less harmful to myself and others feeling so much better healthier stronger I could go on and on how much better and easier

  14. It’s true. Boozing is hard. Doesn’t matter for me if it’s wine, spirits or any other type, if I swallow any, it makes it hard for me to breathe n the hours that follow for some reason. Takes ages to recover and return to the pre-booze breathing capacity I usually have too. ( I’ve had medical tests – No diagnosis of any type of respiratory condition like asthma found to explain it)

    Have to agree, a weekend binge is very hard work when seen in this way. Feeling tired from the booze ruining a good night’s sleep, the plunge into the lowest of low moods, the anxiety of obsessively trying to secure ongoing supply of the happy-high that somehow never feels as happy or good as I thought it would, the awful time after the happy-high has worn off but the alcohol iis still trapped in my system taking what feels like forever to be processed and expunged leaving me staggering under heavy, strung-out groginess, the horrible bizarre feeling of unquenched thirst and dessicated dehydration even though I’ve swallowed pints and pints and pints of liquid….

    You’re right, this is all very hard. Wouldn’t have any of this to worry about if I’d never got suckered in by “just one wine”. Like other people posting here have said, the simplicity of Sober is much, much easier

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