Every once in a while I run into an article that supports a theory of mine, that I have used for years to control my personal spending habits. Though I am not going to try to convince you that this will work for you, it has worked for me. So what is the burrito factor and how does it work?

What is the burrito factor you ask? It’s a currency system I use. Here in San Diego, they have this tasty treat called a California burrito. It is essentially a Carne Asada burrito with one special ingredient. French Fries!!!!

I can get a California burrito for \$5 at the local taco stand. Not only is that sucker scrumtrulescent, but it also fills me up. Now, whenever I go out to eat and look at the menu, I run the burrito factor through my mental calculator. It looks a little something like this… “Okay, this salad is gonna cost me \$12.50, which is the same price as 2.5 California burritos. Plus the salad is probably only going to fill me up 50%. So that means this salad is gonna cost the equivalent of 5 California burritos to get full. Death to salad!

Sound ridiculous? Think again. By using a simple monetary formula to see just how much something costs in terms of real dollars, I do this. Say you are making \$30 an hour. You go out for dinner and prime rib is \$32.50 a plate. Does that sound high to you? It did to me. But that is exactly how much they wanted at a restaurant in Pacifica, CA. called the Valleymar Station. Using my formula I calculated that I needed to work 1.5 hours just to have dinner for myself. So I didn’t eat there and instead headed up to Daly City and had prime rib for \$16.50 at Val’s Redwood room. I only had to work 30 minutes to have pay for my meal.

What formula do you use to calculate your costs for goods and services?