Ever felt crushing existential dread the morning after a night of drinking? Was i obnoxious? Did i offend anyone? I hope they got my sarcasm. These are just some of the thoughts that would race through my mind as i lay in bed trying to piece last night's events together while nursing a headache and desperately looking for something to eat (sinigang, specifically). I used to think that there was something deeply wrong with me for having these feelings following a boozy night, which is why i stopped drinking for years. Turns out though, it's a thing, and people who already have some form of anxiety are more prone to it. The irish call it "The Fear", reddit users coined the term "Hangxiety".
Say youre shy and you use alcohol to help you socialize. Your brain gets a rush of dopamine and you feel great. But when the alcohol subsides and your dopamine levels return to normal, that's when it gets tricky. Your other neurotransmitters get interrupted, giving you a host of emotions ranging from panic, to feeling depressed, to being impulsive, to plain irritable.
Other people just have a headache or nausea to deal with the next day but for those prone to hangxiety, the fear can get pretty overwhelming. So what do you do when you feel the urge to apologize to everybody and contemplate the purposelessness of your life? You take a deep breath and try to remember that it's most probably your body's physiology rather than an embarrassing scenario. Do your breathwork, hydrate, meditate, and WORK OUT. These things will help you calm down and help eliminate alcohol from your system, while normalizing out-of-sync hormones.
It could also be helpful to try and figure out how many drinks it takes to get you to your happy tipsy non-rowdy level, and stick to it for the rest of the night. This way, you'll avoid feeling like you took it too far, leaving you with one less thing to be anxious about the next day.