Burnout. You hear it a lot from employees who work extremely long hours, have overwhelming tasks, and/or work in people-facing environments. You know you’re on the edge of burnout when you feel mentally, emotionally, and physically stressed. I’m an airline worker, and sadly, I feel the symptoms of burnout. Through the midst of flight cancellations and angry passengers, the thought came to me: out of all the Zelda games, which Link and Zelda have potentially faced burnout? Let’s talk about it.

Immediately I thought of Link from Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask. This is a kid who learned quickly that he is the chosen one to save Hyrule. Quite the daunting task, but between time traveling as Child and Adult Link, and facing some horrific scenes, I feel this Link has gone through emotional and mental stress. Then, as he rides off to Termina, he’s tasked with saving Clocktown within three days, otherwise the moon will fall. That is one hell of a deadline, and definitely more reason that Link was burnout by the end. And because he was a forgotten hero in Hyrule, that could have taken a toll on his mental health, resulting in becoming the Hero’s Shade in Twilight Princess.

There is no doubt in my mind that Zelda from Breath of the Wild definitely faced some burnout during her studies. From the pressure from her father to awaken her powers, and from praying at the Shrines to no avail, Zelda battled with anxiety and high levels of stress. Aside from this, her mother died, so she had no one to teach her about her abilities. And when her powers did awaken, she sealed herself with Calamity Ganon for 100 years. All this insurmountable mental and physical stress, I feel, has built severe burnout for our princess. 

While this was a thought I had and of course, these are just games, we must remind ourselves that when we feel overwhelmed due to work or other life challenges, we need to decompress and separate the outside world from our personal space. Protect your mind, your heart, and do what makes you truly happy.

What are your thoughts? Which Link and Zelda do you believe have suffered with burnout? Let us know in the comments below.

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