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A record amount of Americans are quitting their jobs due to pandemic burnout

Millions quit their jobs due to pandemic burnout
Millions quit their jobs due to pandemic burnout 02:06

A record 4.3 million Americans quit their jobs in August alone. The biggest reason: burnout. But rather than complain, thousands have started their own companies.

Nick Folmar had pandemic panic: he was furloughed by his janitorial company 13 months ago when no one else was hiring.

"If I'm going to have something, I'm going to have to create it," Folmar said. "And I'm going to create it with the skills that I have and the passion for the work I like to do.

Folmar gambled with his family's savings to start Jet Stream Clean, his carpet-cleaning business along the Alabama-Georgia border.

"I've doubled my money and my salary doubled. Doubled!" Folmar said.

Nick Folmar started his own carpet-cleaning business after being furloughed during the COVID-19 pandemic. CBS News

America has become a nation of job quitters during the pandemic. Millions of workers like Folmar are leaving the job market for good, often to become their own boss.

In one survey, nearly one-third of workers who quit started their own businesses. In another survey, 95% of workers said they were thinking about quitting.

"Done with a cubicle. I'm done commuting. I'm done sitting in an office," said professor Tom Smith, who studies the pandemic's labor market trends at Emory University's business school in Atlanta.

When asked why he thought people were making the leap now, Smith said, "Maybe the looking at the craziness in the eye and coming out on the other end made people reevaluate how much risk is actually involved."

Hustling in a crisis, Folmar found prosperity, more money, more time with his family and a better life balance. "I took this dream and ran with it. And with it secured my family," Folmar said.

With a paycheck he created, Folmar can take this job and love it.

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