Meet Mr. Burrito Bowl
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Today, I have a fun Succes Story interview to share with you. Mr. Burrito Bowl has stopped by the blog to share his story. If you have been following the Success Story series you will know that typically, interviews are reserved for accomplished authors, business leaders, celebrities, and real-life people who have achieved financial success on modest incomes.
Until this point, we have never interviewed a blogger. However, when I met Mr. Burrito Bowl I felt it was worth breaking with tradition. Mr. Burrito Bowl defines success as being happy, and in that regard, he is wildly successful.
Note: Mr. Burrito Bowl contributed the cool artwork for today’s post.
My questions are in bold and Mr. Burtito Bowl’s follow in plain text
Who are you and what makes you successful?
This is great being interviewed. Thank you for this. My name is Mr. Burrito Bowl. I’m here talking to you today because I’m a very humble and successful person. In 2018 alone my website burritobowldiaries.com earned well over $22.71. Projected revenue for 2019 is somewhere under $3 million. Maybe closer to $30, but let’s not get into specifics.
Until very recently I had never been asked to do an interview based on my success or even been called successful. Everyone who signs up for Twitter does so with the hope of one day being interviewed. Last week my dream came true. This is how I know I finally made it in the cutthroat world of personal finance bloggers.
I grew up a homeschooled preachers kid from the fictional state of Montana. Growing up, money was not talked about because our motto was, “The Lord will provide.” Once I grew up and realized The Lord had provided a 1976 Ford Fairmont and student loans, I knew it was up to me to learn about money.
I’m a procrastinator so I didn’t actually get around to learning about it until a couple of decades later when my wife and I heard about financial independence. “These people don’t have jobs, and they’re only in their thirties! Sounds like my siblings.” I joked at Thanksgiving dinner as I elbowed my brother in the ribs. This is when I knew I wanted to be a successful personal finance blogger.
I’m passionate about writing. I try to take boring financial concepts and make them so entertaining that a normal person would read them. Hopefully, the blog really takes off so I can sell it to the highest bidder. I’ve never understood when people complain about someone selling out.
I’d sell this blog for a few hundred bucks and a nice bottle of scotch. The thought of retiring early appeals to me because I’ve always wanted to have one of those Piña Colada drinks on the beach. Those seem like something a retired person would drink and I will be no exception.
What I learned from being successful?
I’ve been learning a lot about success ever since a week ago when I first learned I’m successful. First of all, if you want to be successful, try to be funny or really pretty. If neither of those will work, try to be smart. Also, stop blaming your parents. They didn’t have the internet, and you were a bit much. That being said, just keep at it. Lucky for you and me, success doesn’t come to the best or the brightest. Success comes to those who keep showing up.
People will tell you all sorts of unsolicited bad advice. People have told me for months to please stop trying to change all the conversations on their tweet threads to talk of simulation theory. Would I have a beautiful wife and an okay job if I’d have listened to them? Really makes you think.
Mistakes you’ve made?
I’ve made a few mistakes, mostly in college. Here’s a quick list of my college mistakes. This is by no means a complete list.
I once ate a five-pound burrito in fifteen minutes. I hurt so badly afterward that I couldn’t stand up straight. I went home and laid in the shower while the warm water washed over my ashamed and trembling body.
I didn’t apply myself at all while I was in college. I just went there to get a degree, but not to learn.
I didn’t buy books in a misguided attempt to save money, and I even lived in my truck for a semester to protest the meal plan.
In order to pay off my student loans faster, I worked the night shift at a Love’s gas station. I was so sleep deprived that one night a customer came in and asked if he could borrow $60 from the till because he couldn’t wait for the ATM machine to be free. He said he’d bring it right back and he seemed sincere enough. He never came back.
Eventually, I graduated from college and was able to start making mistakes closer to home.
I sold my old car to a roommate, but I left the license plate on. He never registered the vehicle and got a bunch of parking tickets. All those parking tickets came back on me, and when I tried to explain that I didn’t own the car they told me I should have removed the license plates when I sold it.
I said, noted, but it’s too late for that. Eventually, the car got impounded and I had to pay over $700 in ticket fees. Lesson learned. I got married shortly after that so I wouldn’t have to deal with having roommates.
Best advice you’ve been told?
When I was a kid I had a wrestling coach tell me a story about how his mom used to always say, “Don’t be lazy,” but she said it in Spanish. For some reason that’s always stuck with me. I imagine if his mom had told him, “Don’t be lazy,” it wouldn’t have had the same impact. Speaking in Spanish to children is very impactful when you grow up in Montana. Anytime I feel like slacking I tell myself “No seas flojo,” I’m pretty sure I’m saying it wrong, but the message is just for me, so it works.
This brings up another point. I was like eight years old when I heard him say that. You never know when you might have a lifelong impact on someone, even if they can’t even tie their shoe. I don’t remember anything from that wrestling camp, but I remember, “No seas flojo.”
The advice you’d give to someone else?
It depends on the person and the situation. For instance: If a guy is just walking by I might not give him any advice. “Not everyone gets advice,” I’d think as he walked past. But other times I do give advice. “Call your father,” I’ll sometimes holler. I don’t always get it right. Situational awareness is a key tenant to success.
If I could give one piece of general advice to someone I would say, “Hey kid, you need to follow my blog burritobowldiaries.com and you should probably buy a few copies of my book The Adventures of Gunnar McGregor, available on Amazon.” I try to work that sentence in seamlessly to regular conversations as often as possible. People may say that I’m just giving self-serving advice, but it’s a funny book.
“Don’t get a bullshit degree,” is pretty good advice, but try to get that advice from a better source than me. Maybe someone in academia. I think If you’re going to go to college, the best thing to do is get a degree that translates to a real job. It’s tempting to get a degree nobody cares about, but try not to do that. Also, no seas flojo.
What accomplishments are you most proud of?
I feel weird talking about my accomplishments. Yes, I graduated from college with a 2.7 GPA, but I don’t want to come across as arrogant. The three things I’m most proud of can’t be given to you in the classroom. First and foremost, my wife and I reproduced and our daughter is beautiful. Before she was born my wife kept saying how she hoped she’d be healthy. I didn’t want to copy her so I kept saying how I just hope she’s not an ugly baby.
Luckily, we both got what we wanted. My daughter is the best thing I’ve had a part in making.
Also, I once drank 24 pounds of water in six hours to win a bet. The loser of that bet drank 22 ½ pounds. We both felt terrible, but I felt terrible as a winner.
On multiple occasions, I got kicked out of an all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet for eating too many crab legs. Apparently, there’s an unwritten rule that after three hours it’s polite to just be done. They went out of business, though. These could also be classified under ‘mistakes I’ve made’ now that I think about it, but that section was getting kind of long.
What’s coming next?
Dozens of people across the globe who read my first book are eagerly awaiting the sequel. No one has said anything about wanting a sequel, but they’re probably just busy. The first one is a romance novel of sorts; the sequel is a murder mystery.
As far as the blog goes, I’m just going to keep literally writing stream of consciousness until some President comes along who makes a rule against it. If you’ve always wanted to follow a real personal finance blog, you can follow mine. I could name a few blogs that have better financial advice, or better life optimization advice, or better writing, but that would be self-defeating.
Strategies and Tips?
My number one life hack is to do the Wim Hof breathing method. That guy is a modern day saint. I get anxiety about work sometimes. When I do his breathing method, I feel calm and relaxed and just don’t worry. If you have anxiety you need to watch the Vice documentary on Wim Hof and then just go down the rabbit hole of learning about this incredible man.
In addition to the Wim Hof method, I do intermittent fasting. Intermittent fasting is where you eat in an eight-hour window and fast for the other sixteen hours. I was skeptical about it, but it’s really great. I eat from about noon to 8 pm then fast from 8 pm till noon the next day. I drink black coffee and water during that time but consume no calories. I have way more energy at work doing this than when I’d eat breakfast and lunch.
Some days I just don’t eat at all until dinner. It’s supposed to be really good for your internal organs, but I like it because it helps me lose belly fat. If you just do the Wim Hof method and intermittent fasting, you’ll be miles ahead of your competition.
How do you manage time?
One of the best things I’ve ever done in terms of time management and phone nonsense was to silence my text notifications. Do you ever get that phantom buzz when you think you’re getting a text, but you didn’t?
I don’t get that because I silenced text messages. I’m never doing something, then have that thing interrupted by a text. It’s amazing to just look at my phone on my own terms and see I have a text. Sometimes they say things like, “Why aren’t you answering your phone?!?!” but usually it’s not that important.
Actually, I muted all notifications on my phone except for calls. It’s really made a difference in how much time I’m on it. We waste too much time on our phones.
I don’t know if that answers the question. I don’t really manage time. I wake up when my daughter needs to poop in the morning. Then I try to get to work before my boss calls and asks where I am and why haven’t I been answering my texts. Other than that, I don’t really manage my time.
Fitness is a very important part of my life. I use my daughter as a dumbbell a lot because she likes being held and it’s dangerous to hold weights AND a baby. I recently installed Olympic rings in my living room. I kind of jokingly said how it would be cool if we had some and my wife didn’t immediately squash the idea. As a general rule: If your wife doesn’t immediately squash an idea you need to take action on it right away.
As far as my overall philosophy, it doesn’t matter how much money you accumulate if you’re just going to be dead from an unhealthy lifestyle. Not only that but when your body is active you feel better. You don’t have to be a swimsuit model, but at least try to get yourself in good enough shape that you can enjoy life. Your body is a tool to help you wade through this existence. You might as well make that body run as efficiently and effectively as possible.
Social media is weird. I really enjoy making connections on Twitter, but it can be a real time suck and give you a false sense of what’s important. Social media isn’t real. It’s not your real life. The people around you are the ones who really matter. People get too caught up in the number of likes and retweets they get and I really wonder if the juice is worth the squeeze.
I’m old enough to understand that it’s not the end of the world if nobody likes my Instagram photo of the eggs I made that morning. Kids growing up now have no idea what it’s like to not have social media being around. People are becoming suicidal because not enough people like their picture of eggs. It’s crazy. I wish people knew that social media doesn’t give you value.
That being said, follow me on Twitter @mrburritobowl. That’s the best way to get a hold of me, other than by calling me. I don’t mind giving my number out to the world, but I have a lot of things for sale on Craigslist right now so I want to keep the lines clear. We have an Instagram page and a Facebook page too, but those are mostly to post articles. Twitter is where I engage with people the most.
I think having a stoic mindset is a great way to go about life. Do shit that’s hard and makes you feel uncomfortable. Wake up in the morning and be grateful that you can move your body. Do some Wim Hof breathing, take a cold shower, and then be the best you can be at whatever you’re doing. That’s my secret to success.
My success doesn’t come from having over 465 Twitter followers, or because my article on how Forever Will Happen and Why It’s Incredibly Upsetting got shared by someone, or because Paula Pant said I have the best name on Twitter. I am successful because I’m happy.
Lots of people see my thinning hairline, the 2009 Honda Fit that I drive around in, and the 600 SQFT apartment above a garage we live in and think, “I would be happy too if I had all that.” But the truth is, that’s not why I’m happy. I’m happy because I’m comfortable in my own skin and I appreciate this ride of life we’re all on. Having a bunch of money or fame doesn’t make you successful if you can’t look at yourself in the mirror and smile.
Also, be nice. It will make you feel good.