The Crypto Mania: Why are people quitting their jobs for the crypto career?

Michael Taifour
15 min readDec 17, 2021


Watch it on YouTube

All over the world, people are abandoning old forms of money and adopting new ones, like cryptocurrency, faster than our brains can process.

The next stage in the evolution of money will be the rise of nonbank money, including cryptocurrencies, which are encrypted virtual currencies that exist in online ledgers. But the evolution could be rocky. Bitcoin and other volatile cryptocurrencies, while popular as speculative investments, by and large, aren’t useful for everyday transactions, making them more akin to financial assets than to money.

This is why governments worldwide are working hard on maintaining the public’s confidence that their money is not entirely ephemeral.

The two new kinds of money that are rising as cash falls are stablecoins and central bank digital currencies. Stablecoins, which like Bitcoin exist in virtual ledgers, are issued by private entities that promise to convert them on demand into government money or some other asset at a fixed exchange rate.

The irony here is that cryptocurrencies were supposed to get us away from official money, whereas the ones that seem to work as a medium of exchange are backed by official money.

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Recently, Twitter chief Jack Dorsey quit his job for the crypto madness. So are millions of others. They are all taking part in the exodus from the nine to five to the realm of the crypto world.

The Cryptomania has only just begun. It has unleashed a historic burst in self-employment. Because of it, millions of people worldwide are striking out on their own. Due to it, millions of people worldwide are creating a shake-up in the world job market.

Should you quit your job immediately and go full-time crypto?

Watch my documentary on the topic on YouTube

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In the US alone, the number of self-employed people has risen by more than 500,000 since the start of the pandemic to nearly ten million. From May through to September, more than 20 million workers left their employers. And the quit rate increased by more than 6% ever since.

A new type of career path has emerged, one known as the crypto career.

Half of the Gen Z, aged 18 to 22, are choosing to start their careers in that world rather than full-time employment. A summer 2021 survey showed that 20% of people working remotely during the pandemic were considering leaving their jobs for freelance work, mostly crypto.

According to LinkedIn, the number of members who indicated they are self-employed has quadrupled since the pandemic began to 2.2 million.

But where are these workers going and why? This is the multi-multi-million-dollar question.

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Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok have provided new avenues to raise cash for young people. Robinhood Markets and cryptocurrencies, such as bitcoin, Ethereum, and a few other altcoins, have spurred a new generation of traders, some so successful they have quit their jobs to trade.

But is this current shift to self-employment temporary?

Finding good employees has always been a challenge. But these days, it’s become harder than ever. And it is unlikely to improve anytime soon.

Companies are feeling the pinch. An August 2021 survey found that 73% of 380 employers in America alone were facing difficulties attracting new employees. And 70% of them expected this difficulty to persist into 2022. Employee turnover is rising rapidly and may become be the new normal employers are going to have to get used to in 2022 and perhaps beyond.

But how are companies managing? One might ask.

It’s been estimated that it costs an employer more than 120% of that employee’s annual salary to find and train a replacement. That’s why many are trying to develop new ways to keep their workers happy and in their jobs. They’re learning to accept and adapt, and they’re trying to manage the new normal.

This may not be as easy as it sounds.

A May 2021 survey found that 54% of employees surveyed from around the world would consider leaving their job if they were not afforded some form of flexibility in where and when they work. And as the potential workforce goes crypto, employers stuck in the past may be losing out. They are desperately seeking workers to fill open positions.

But will they ever succeed?

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There’s an under-the-radar reason contributing to the workforce shortages. It’s the opportunities created by cryptocurrency. A recent poll reports that 11% of workers have either quit their jobs or know someone who has quit their job as a result of their crypto investments. What’s more stunning is that 4% of the world's labor force have quit their jobs because of cryptocurrency investing.

Technology is creating favorable opportunities for workers to take control of their own futures. Employers know about this development, but they’re clueless on how to attract the new era of crypto-savvy employees back to their workplace.

Opportunities presented by cryptocurrency and non-fungible tokens of NFTs are sucking workers away from the workplace. And this is not going to stop anytime soon.

A large number of individuals have left the workforce after making early, or even more recent, investments in certain high-performing cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Binance Coins, among others.

Those who invested in Bitcoin, Ethereum, or other cryptocurrencies at the inception of the pandemic in March 2020, could be up anywhere from several hundred to a thousand percent. Many in this category have decided to stay home and pursue other prospects rather than returning to work.

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Cryptocurrencies are changing the workforce game with their ability to generate alternative income for their owners. They are incentivizing potential applicants to stay home rather than go to work.

In August 2021, CNBC reported that a 12-year-old boy made $350,000 by creating and selling non-fungible token artworks he named “Weird Whales.” The largest NFT marketplace OpenSea recorded a sales volume of over $2.7 billion in a span of 30 days in 2021. This incredibly significant volume of sales has allowed people to become NFT day-traders, purchasing NFTs and reselling them for profit. Similarly, people who can purchase high-demand NFTs directly from their creators have been able to flip them for significant profits, often the same day.

On August 7, 2021, Veve Collectibles sold 1,000 Secret Rare Spider-Man NFTs for $400 each. They sold out in seconds and became available to purchase only from those lucky enough to get one from the drop. Earlier this fall, the cheapest one available in the Veve Marketplace was already over $9,000.

Then you have the more attractive play-to-earn NFT video games, which are gaining momentum by the hour.

Blockchain-based video games, such as the immensely popular Axie Infinity, allow players to earn cryptocurrency by playing the game. They allow some gamers with low wages to earn a full-time income while living a much more enjoyable life.

To play Axie Infinity, users must have NFT video game characters called “Axies” or playable collectibles from the game. If a user purchases an Axie, they can play the game to earn cryptocurrency, which can be traded for actual money.

In addition, the Axies can also be sold and re-sold with the original owner getting a percentage of each subsequent resale. In one stark example, a rare Axie was sold for 300 Ethereums worth $130,000 and immediately relisted for over twice its initial cost.

This is why many employees are willing to walk away from their jobs. For many, the thought of returning to the office, a daily commute, the 9–5 grind, and dealing with overbearing and micromanaging bosses has become totally undesirable.

The ability to trade in cryptocurrency or NFTs, or even play videogames from the comfort of their homes, and on their schedule, is enticing enough, especially if these employees can earn close to, or even more, than their current salaries.

But how is this shifting the very fabric of the world society, especially among GenZs. I’ll answer this question and more in this third chapter. Don’t go away. I’ll be back after this short commercial.

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According to a new survey, 58% of GenZs are quitting work to go crypto Full Time. Young people are increasingly seeing crypto as a way out of working their whole lives.

The common perception of what defines a ‘good’ job is steadily shifting. From hyperinflation concerns to work stress, over half of GenZs are increasingly seeing cryptocurrency as an escape route out of a lifetime of meaningful work.

As such, the social fabric is shifting.

By the end of August 2021, 10.4 million job openings were available to US workers. Surprisingly, 4.3 million workers quit their jobs, representing 2.9% of the workforce. This was the first time this trend came to be known as the ‘Great Resignation’. In China, the same phenomenon has been called “lying flat”. Prominent Chinese novelist Liao Zenghu described it as a break up from a “cycle of horror”.

“In today’s society, our every move is monitored and every action criticized,”… “Is there any more rebellious act than to simply ‘lie-flat?’” he asked.

This spelled disaster for the world economy as we know it. This is when crypto space came in as the next level-up project for young people seeking alternative forms of income. With crypto adoption, most job quitters did so to leave their low-income jobs. Those under $50,000 income are the most likely to quit jobs to earn from cryptos.

But how much money can GenZ earn through crypto?

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If you’ve been following crypto news recently you may have noticed there is no shortage of profit-making opportunities in the market.

Let me give you a simple example…

If you were a crypto trader and had put $1,000 in a coin named Solana in August 2021, you would now be able to sell your tokens for $7,000. Imagine that?

And that’s just one example of many.

Do you understand now why “Lie Flat” is here, and it’s changing the labor market?

And if you think this is happening only among GenZs, think again.

Tech moguls are also getting bored and restless with their jobs, and they’re striking out in search of adventure.

Jack Dorsey quit Twitter for Bitcoin. Jeff Bezos’ wanderlust led him to step down from Amazon this year and fulfill his childhood fantasy of going to space. Google’s founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, stepped down in 2019 and have since been investing in futuristic projects like airships and flying taxis. Mark Zuckerberg is still running Facebook, but it’s called Meta now.

This is happening while crypto companies everywhere are expanding fast, so fast it can make your head spin. Big players, like Coinbase, employ at least 3,000 people. All are growing exponentially… all are hiring. In 2021, crypto investment bank Galaxy Digital increased its headcount by 130% to 510 people. In the next two to three years, even big banks will completely change their stance on crypto, and that will cause a huge sea change.

Regardless of what’s happening in the finance world or in Silicon Valley, what’s happening in the real world with GenZs and millennials is a revolution and not a resignation.

To them, the money is no longer worth the stress. What’s more, the broader societal shift means that young workers are prioritizing their self-worth. They’re trying out new things, taking advantage of new opportunities, and not sticking with the old bargain. If the pandemic revealed anything, it’s how much young people hate their jobs.

So, they’ve reinvented a new line of work.

Now, most of them spend their days option trading, running a Twitter bot account that tracks Ethereum pricing, and dabbling in Web3 and cryptocurrency investments. And while they wouldn’t describe themselves as happier now, knowing that they miss the social interaction of an office, their moods are becoming more “neutral” day-after-day, and they look forward to building their presence as an independent entity in which they can do whatever they want, whenever they want — no questions asked.

“I have no stress on the job compared to what I used to do,” one millennial told this channel. He’s not working full-time and has no concerns about money, thanks to his savings, investments, and a boom time in the crypto world. “My goal is not to go back to having a boss,” he said. He pointed out that he chose his mental health over income. He chose his “financial freedom” earned by investing in crypto assets.

And he’s not the only one to choose a new career path in life, one that’s much different than the old one. Economists predict that the Great Resignation is only getting started, especially for Gen Z and millennial workers who are well-positioned to find new ways to earn income.

But how much are Zennials, or those aged 28 to 32, earning from trading in crypto?

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Almost two-thirds of those who had quit their jobs due to “mad gainz” earned under $50,000 per year — 27% of those earning less than $25,000, while 37% had a total income of between $25,000 and $50,000. Meanwhile, 15% of those tossing in jobs thanks to crypto had an income between $50,000 and $75,000, 13% between $75,000 and $150,000, and 8% with $150,000 or more.

What this means is that crypto investments may have provided life-changing levels of income for some, while the wealthier owners of crypto use it more as another form of asset diversification rather than a source of income.

Billionaire investor and crypto proponent Mark Cuban tweeted a link to the survey saying: “Wow 4% of people in the USA have quit their jobs because of crypto gains, and the vast majority made under 50k. Now we know why so many people quit low-paying jobs.”

Four percent of the Labor Force… that’s approximately 6 million people. It’s even been reported that Americans who reinvested their stimulus checks in Bitcoin made nearly $4,500 in profit.

The poll also found that 12% were seeking “independence from government.”

No wonder, Americans are leaving their jobs in droves.

So, what steps should you take before quitting your job?

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Crypto is very silly.

As a guest on Saturday Night Live, Elon Musk, the richest man on the globe, repeatedly joked about Dogecoin, a cryptocurrency itself created as a joke — and one now worth tens of billions of dollars. This summer, the NBA star Steph Curry spent six figures on a randomly generated drawing of an ape. There are countless memes and seemingly just as many scams.

For a certain cohort of tech workers and creatives, though, crypto is also very serious. To them, it suggests a rosier future of the Internet. If web2 is the Internet now, controlled by a few big platforms, they’re trying to build a decentralized web3. To get there, many are following their passion in a particularly banal way: They’ve made crypto their day job.

They’re quitting their 9 to 5 in web2 so that they can work 24/7 in web3.

But is that a good thing?

We’ve asked this question to a couple who recently quit their day jobs to do crypto full-time, and this is what they told us: “Crypto’s speed and intensity can be tough to keep up with.” They admitted that their work-life balance is worse after quitting their jobs for crypto. They said they sometimes feel like rats on cocaine working in this space because there’s so much happening. They even told us that they think about crypto while they sleep.

These are the downsides to the fast-paced and high-risk world of crypto, but is there an upside to it?

According to online publication Vice, there’s today a Friends with Benefits or FWB, crypto-focused community known as a DAO, short for “decentralized autonomous organization.” Essentially, it’s a private club with its own cryptocurrency, dollar FWB. You’ll need to own at least 75 tokens in order to join.

There’s a private Discord community, members-only parties around the globe, and, most recently launched, an editorial platform. You can sell your tokens if you decide to leave, though, potentially for great profit. What’s amazing about it is that if you’d joined FWB in early July, it would have cost you just $550. But if you’d joined today, those same tokens would be worth over $9,000.

Many are quitting their full-time jobs to work on FWB. They’re optimistic that their work in crypto might lead to something better. Some of them are netting around $220,000 a year, with about half of it in tokens.

Not bad for a web3 job!

But is it the same for everyone?

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The fear of missing out, or FOMO, on record-high stock prices and the boom in cryptocurrency — or digital currencies — has pushed more young people around the world to try day trading and other kinds of investing for the first time. Those of them who kept their jobs during last year’s COVID-19 recession and are flush with stimulus money and savings are now cashing in big on everything crypto.

And it’s easy to see why.

Cryptomania and the wealth generated by it have drawn young people around the world to invest in it. The dream to become rich quickly seemed to them close at hand.

But what they didn’t realize, until a few days ago when the crypto market crashed, is that the drive to get in on the action comes with big risks. And while the do-it-yourself spirit of day traders is understandable given frustrations with low-paying retail jobs and distrust of big financial institutions, low levels of financial knowledge have left most young people at risk of losing more money than they can spare when markets turn volatile or crash.

It’s like a Las Vegas-style atmosphere where you’re gambling and things can work out in your favor. But just as quickly they can turn against you. And like gambling, one of the newest yet most volatile forms of investments is now among the hottest — I’m talking cryptocurrencies.

The majority of young people, who struggle with financial knowledge in general, don’t fully grasp the finer points of this new asset. A recent survey by Harris Poll provided exclusively to USA TODAY found that 60% of U.S. people say they are “not very” or “not at all” familiar with cryptocurrencies.

This lack of financial literacy is costing young Americans millions. Worldwide, this could go up to billions.

Young investors usually make two pivotal mistakes while trading cryptocurrencies: Their investing time horizon is too short and they’re scooping up too many speculative assets in their portfolios that are risky, according to Yosef Bonaparte, associate professor of finance and the director of external affairs in finance at the University of Colorado Denver. Cryptocurrencies can see wild swings within a day or even minutes, making day trading dangerous for small-time investors who lack knowledge about them. Most of them are oblivious of the golden rule in crypto investment… “Never invest more than you’re willing to lose.”

James Fielder, an adjunct professor of political science at Colorado State University who has studied Robinhood, wrote in a research paper that “by delighting users, Robinhood creates players rather than investors.

Robinhood, a popular American crypto and stock exchange, allows traders to directly link their savings accounts to its app, which could cause a novice trader dabbling in options or other risky trades to quickly lose their money.

Then you have those who mine cryptocurrency using custom-built computers. Their electricity bills could average anywhere between $250 and $400 per month, leaving them with just enough money to live off their crypto mining profits.

The fear of missing out is huge. This is why you should be more careful.

If you want to gamble like in Vegas, only 2% of your portfolio should be in crypto assets, not 100%.



Michael Taifour

Irrepressible, opinionated, and always politically incorrect, satirist Michael covers the week’s news and features its main events in his own distinct way.