Kate's Blog

The Joy Of Being Sober For A Weekend In Paris

When I first quit drinking, I thought I was saying goodbye to fun trips away with friends.

I couldn’t have imagined going away for a girly weekend in Paris, and watching the people around me sip cocktails whilst I stayed sober.

How times have changed!

I’ve just got home from a few days in a country that’s obviously renowned for its wine, I was there with friends who both enjoy a Kir Royale – and it was absolutely perfect.

Watch today’s video to find out how I shifted my mindset…

Key points

Go back to basics

At the end of the day, all we’re talking about here is putting a different liquid in your glass. It’s good to remember that, especially when we’re making a really big deal out of it! You still get to have everything else about the experience. In fact, you get to have more, because alcohol isn’t stealing from you. It isn’t taking your time, money, energy or brain space.

Get clear on what the trip is about

No trip is ever just about drinking alcohol. If that’s all it was about, you’d never leave home! For me, this weekend in Paris was about spending time with two friends who I don’t get to see that often any more. It was about exploring the city as a tourist for the first time in years. It was about celebrating the fact that I’ve got a big birthday coming up soon. It was about eating croissants from a proper French bakery. It was about so much more than the type of liquid in my glass.

Don’t romanticise drinking

We’re great at performing reality checks in other areas of life. For example, in the Netflix show Emily In Paris, everyone wears designer clothes and totters along the city’s cobbled streets in heels. That’s not real life – and most of us wouldn’t even think of trying to emulate that. It’s just a TV show after all. So don’t forget that the drinking scenes are also fake. Real people do not use an addictive drug like alcohol with ease and glamour (and they don’t escape the regrets or the hangover!)

Looking to create a sober life you love? Click here to find out 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. 


12 Responses

  1. Thank you so much for this wonderful message. I have the exact same feeling about Emily in Paris BTW – they make drinking look like a necessary part of a glamorous life, with no downsides (including everyone being super skinny and fit).

    1. There is so much illusion in the movies and I talk about the illusions or ‘myths’ around alcohol that we’ve all grown up believing in my online course. This is the basis of the help I offer women to find freedom from booze in a fun and empowering way. Here’s the link to find out more: https://thesoberschool.com/course/

  2. Hi Kate,
    I am in Paris at the moment and am 6.5 weeks sober. It’s been tough here. Thank you for sharing this at a time where I, quite literally, needed it the most. Off to the French bakery I go for a croissant. You are an inspiration!

  3. Kate, I so appreciate this video. I will be retiring soon and have plans to travel specifically to Europe. I am 8 months alcohol free and I have wondered how traveling to these “romantic” places will be without drinking wine or cocktails. Thank you for reassuring me that I will have an even better time without alcohol. Thank you for sharing your personal experiences with us.

  4. This is a great blog for me to hear. I took Monday off, in central Edinburgh’s pretty streets, childfree, images of the sophisticated Festival glamour enhanced by a Kir Royale running through my mind
    But I didn’t. Instead I visited a music bar, listened to some Jazz and enjoyed an Appletiser (ignoring the 25g sugar!)
    The analogy of drinking and walking in heels is a great one. Both make us lose our balance!
    The myth of sophisticated European drinking is such a deeply engrained one. And French people probably mythologise pubs and pints and whiskies – we’re maybe being marketed to each other and neither version is true!

    1. Good point Libby! Well done for choosing AF and enjoying the experience just as much – it’s nothing to do with the liquid in our glass anyway.

  5. Thank you. I am turning 60 next month and have a few trips coming up. This reminds me that I will have an even better time sober.

    1. Congratulations on your forthcoming celebration 🙂 Sober trips are the best gift you could ever give yourself and no cost too!

  6. I travelled for the world living out of a suitcase for 3 years and the majority of that time involved drinking. Afternoon wine was my reward for working in the morning, which rolled into going out barhopping, meeting people, and getting into all kinds of blurry trouble.

    I was nervous to travel again after being sober for a year and a half. I was worried it would be a huge trigger and I would fall back into it. How would I meet people? Would I still have wild adventures?

    Last year a friend invited me to Mexico for a potential business endeavor. What was supposed to be a two week trip turned into three months. I had more fun than I ever had being abroad. I made genuine connections. I remembered everything I did. I walked around with an open heart and let that be my guide. I found myself surrounded by sober friends everywhere I went.

    It is totally all about putting different liquid in your glass, thank you for the reminder. Smoothie? Soda water with lime? (Those are my go-tos!) Being grateful and appreciative of these things makes a huge difference. And great stories can still start out with other beverages as long as you are open to adventure, exploration, and travel!

    1. How wonderful! Thank you for sharing this Camille. Our world really does open up to bigger and better things once we remove alcohol. We do more, see more and meet more like minded people. Wishing you many more inspiring adventures.

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