Kate's Blog

“I Deserve A Glass Of Wine Tonight…”

As soon as the thought popped into my head, I knew I’d be in trouble.

Back in my drinking days, “I deserve a glass of wine” was something I said to myself a lot.

Bad day? Busy, bored or tired? I could always find a reason why I deserved a glass.

(Only problem was, it was never just one…)

If you struggle with this as well, check out today’s video for three tips to overcome the “I deserve it…” thought.

Key points

“I deserve a glass of wine” is a thought that’s quite hard to resist, until you start unpicking it. We’ve got to be willing to examine our thoughts – that’s where the real work of sobriety is. 

In the moment, when you’re telling yourself: “I deserve a glass of wine”, what is it that you really want? Is it a treat or reward? Is it relief from a negative emotion? Distraction, relaxation or something else? Once you’ve identified what you’re really craving, then you can look at how to give that to yourself. There are so many other ways you can meet that need without alcohol. 

Remember to ask whether you “deserve” all the side effects too. So the thought, “I deserve a glass of wine” needs to be answered with, “But do I deserve a hangover? Do I deserve to break my promises to myself? Do I deserve to feel bad tomorrow?” Drinking wine can feel like self-care but it isn’t. You don’t “deserve” a toxic, cancer-causing glass of rotting fruit juice. You just don’t.

In the grand scheme of things, what do you really want? What do you believe you deserve? Maybe it’s a great relationship, a better job or more time to yourself. If all you ever tell yourself is, “I deserve a glass of wine” then that’s all you’re going to get. Drinking will keep you stuck, masking and tolerating your problems instead of working through them and making changes.

Need some help creating 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. 


44 responses

  1. Great video! I can relate so much. It has been hard to figure out what to do with my time without a glass in my hand.

  2. This most definitely resonates with me, particularly not deserving the tiredness, hangover and broken night’s sleep.

    1. I wake up every single morning saying I won’t drink tonight. I hate the daily anxiety. I hate that I struggle with work every day. But this morning I really really hate the fact my son saw me drunk last night, and I don’t remember what I said to him. It’s definitely time to stop and give my whole life some overdue new normality. Thank you for this and your other supports on here, I don’t want to join AA, and your approach really resonates with all my difficulties with alcohol.

  3. This resonated with me for sure- esp. the 2nd part about the regrets the next morning. How about the regret of the empty calories I’d be consuming after watching what I ate all day? I always feel out of sorts the morn after- not so much hungover because I think I have high resistance now, but just lazy and foggy-headed. Just don’t need that! Thank you for your educational & psychological emails ,!

    1. Many women I work with tell me they ‘save’ calories for wine. Honestly, I’d rather have the dessert instead and less painful consequences the day after!

  4. I will be sober 4 years in august and today I had that feeling. I’m feeling a bit low today and thought just one glass of wine would boost my spirits. Give me that happy feeling. I know I won’t do it because I’ve worked so hard for those nearly 4 years of sobriety but still those thoughts can creep in. So today your video came at the perfect time.
    Thank you Kate. Very wise words

    1. Congratulations on nearly four years of sobriety 🙂 That’s brilliant and certainly doesn’t ‘deserve’ a glass of underwhelming, toxic liquid to lift your spirits. Keep going Tracy, the thoughts are just cultural memories of the time when you drank but they’re not true.

  5. Tomorrow will be 500 days of sobriety for me. I am very proud of myself and my life has turned around in a very positive way. The only problem is I’m craving some kind of alcohol. Primarily because I don’t enjoy people the way I use to when I drank.
    Your video is very informative and is making me think .

  6. Very easy to relate to this as I will wind down after a night out not drinking. I live alone and enjoy being in the wine bar atmosphere to use a 70s popular place. After that glass I very rarely stop.
    Thanks for useful video.

    1. You DO deserve to wind down or enjoy being in a sociable atmosphere, but you can do that whatever liquid is in your glass. There are some great mocktails and alcohol-free alternatives these days that hit the spot – give some a try. 🙂

  7. Nearly 20 weeks Sober and you reminded me of the hangover, broken nights sleep and chronic anxiety I used to have….not any more. Keep going Ladies, it’s really, really, worth it, I promise.

      1. It’s so important to replace drinking with positive self affirming thinks. Some may try to replace alcohol with food and sugary deserts. I’ve heard on lab studies, rats refined sugar to cocaine if given the choice. Humans weren’t meant to consume this processed substance. Healthy alternatives such as hobbies, exercise, music, reading and volunteerism among many other life altering experiences. I’ve only recently stopped, as I want to explore some health concerns I have that I have masked with alcohol for a number of years. Ultimately excessive alcohol, drugs and poor diet is toxic to our health. We have choices to make every day. Trying to discover better ones. I may go back to social consumption if i feel I can do so in a healthy manner. Time and experience will dictate.

        1. Hi Avery, I think it’s great that you are looking to make healthier choices in your life. Removing a toxic drug like alcohol will certainly help, I have no doubt.

  8. This really resonates with me. I have had the odd craving, but now when I do I’ll tell myself that I deserve to sleep well and wake up refreshed without a hangover. Thank you for the reminder.

  9. I really enjoyed this video some really useful information and the nxt time I say I deserve wine I will think of what Kate has said here

  10. Sooo many times I’ve had the 3am wake up & lay in bed guilt ridden because yet again I’ve given in to that glass or 4 of wine.
    4 weeks AF now & feel so proud of myself.

  11. I resonate with the “waking in the middle of the night”, and not getting back to sleep. Also, the feeling of guilt in the morning and feeling a failure.
    I don’t want to stop drinking altogether, I just want to NOT drink every night. I’m three weeks in and feeling better already, only having a drink on a couple of nights, and definitely not as much as before.

  12. As I get older (59) I have noticed that if I drink more than 2 glasses of wine, I feel unwell for at least 2 days.
    We only drink on a weekend – ‘because we deserve it after working hard all week!’ Most of our friends relax in the same way. However, I have mentioned to my husband that wouldn’t it be great for us to do something else over the weekend, cinema, swimming even axe throwing!! So that on a Monday morning, we feel refreshed and raring to go. Apparently, this makes me a killjoy – although there is nothing joyous about a hangover! Needless to say, he doesn’t suffer as I do. So your video resonated with me.

  13. Kate, I just completed your amazing Getting Unstuck Course – truly wonderful. As a result of your coaching I have not touched a drop of alcohol last couple of weeks, the desire has disappeared. I believed all the fabulous science you taught us. I have no desire to raise a glass of alcohol to my lips. Thanks for helping so many people in the world. You are very inspiring.
    With big hug and much love

  14. I’m very early on my journey. Still feel quite lost and conflicted. I don’t drink every day, or week, I’m a binge drinker and not a very good one, It’s a bit of a story! But I did go out last Saturday for a meal and didn’t drink, it was ok even though others were drinking, I missed the buzz, but I did feel good the next morning when I felt ok and didn’t lose the day feeling hungover and full of anxiety. Thank you for the video it’s very supportive and a reminder I need. X

    1. There are so many other ways to get a buzz that are healthy and don’t have negative consequences. When I was drinking, it was hard to imagine that anything else could do quite the same job. But that’s the thing about alcohol – it messes with your head.

      When you get into the habit of drinking too much, it’s easy to forget that there are natural highs out there. Healthy highs that will give you the boost you crave, without making you feel like you’ve been run over by a bus afterwards.
      I’m so happy to hear you didn’t waste a day feeling hungover, that’s a big win!

  15. Great video and tips. I’m still on the way to full sobriety just having wine once a week – however I’m replacing the midweek wine with 1 or 2 cigarettes – which I know I have to deal with.

  16. Hi Kate
    Early days for me 20 days but I’m happy and can’t thank you enough for your posts, stories and encouragement.

  17. Hi Kate,
    Thanks so much for your messages, I’m in a topsy turvy place at the moment and they help!
    Could you let me know when you’re running the next course?
    Many thanks

  18. This is one of your bests, thank you for sharing. Which btw, says a lot, as all your content is world class, thoughtful, meaningful and powerful I truly appreciate you and your work, thank you for your honesty and light!

    12-weeks AF and loving life authentically in full colour

  19. I wanted time to reflect before I responded to this post. The ramifications/consequences of drinking for me are severe. Not “just” the lack of sleep, morning hangover etc. Which is bad enough . The chronic abuse has caused several physical issues that I can’t ignore any longer. I finally have acknowledged alcohol is slowly and progressively
    poisoning my body. I started my alcohol free journey in October. Thinking to take “a break” from alcohol and “cut back”. For me cutting back didn’t work. If it’s in my home, I’ll drink the bottle. I now can truthfully say physically, mentally and emotionally it isn’t worth it! Alcohol is not my friend! I can’t and won’t allow this addiction to sabotage my health, marriage and relationships any longer.
    Thank you for helping me on this journey of being alcohol free.

  20. This really resonated with me – the whole idea of a drink being a reward, something Ive earned, something for me – especially if I’m stressed, its a way of turning my brain off for a while. I clearly need to find other ways of meeting these needs, but this is where I get stuck, because its just so easy to reach for a drink. Its really great to see so many more resources appearing to help get sober and stay sober – thank you!

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