One day, I arranged to meet with a friend, and as I walked toward the bus station, she called to tell me she had already arrived.

She had arrived at our arranged meeting point earlier than expected. This urged me to get there as quickly as possible. As I waited at the bus stop, many cars passed by, most with just one or two people in them. I considered that if I lived in a place where everyone knew each other, someone would probably stop and give me a ride. But if someone I did not know stopped and offered me a ride, would I get in? If the person seems genuine, why not?

Many years ago, this happened to me in Istanbul. All of a sudden, it started raining heavily. I had just got off the bus and was walking toward the home of my friend, which was in a large residence complex. The distance was quite considerable, and I was sure I was going to be soaking wet. There was a woman in front of me walking with a baby stroller. A taxi stopped by her, and the driver said “I’m going to that complex to pick up a customer. Seeing as I’m going there anyway, why don’t you get in and stay dry. It won’t cost you anything.” The woman refused, but then he turned to me and said, “You can also get a ride.” I felt his good intentions and accepted the offer. On the way, he seemed rather perplexed about the other woman’s behavior. He told me that it was a genuine offer and couldn’t understand why she would refuse.

I trusted him, but the other woman did not. Consequently, I was the one who benefited. I arrived at my destination without getting wet, and I had met a wonderful person. In fact, what feeds capitalism is distrust, and this is why capitalism tries to intensify this feeling among people. We spend money because of it. We are made to believe we are not beautiful enough, so we spend money to look more beautiful. As we lack self-confidence, we try to cover it up by buying expensive things that we see as status symbols. We buy alarm systems for our homes and cars. An image is created that says cheap, cozy restaurants are dangerous and unhygienic, so we shouldn’t trust them. We instead believe we should eat at expensive restaurants, and we pay a fortune for a small portion of food. We believe there is a correlation between the price of something and its trustworthiness. You can surely think of more examples if you try.

When no confidence is spread around, relationships also take their toll. How much is your likeliness to start a relationship with someone based on trust? What if someone does not even trust his or her parents? Capitalism of course feeds on this. People become lonely, and they try to hide the lack of trust in a relationship with expensive gifts.

Now, you’re probably asking what can be done to escape this cycle. We can start by first trusting ourselves and then the others around us. Sure, we will maybe trust the wrong person sometimes and suffer a loss. Believe me, though, when I say that this is better than living with fear. We should of course be wary of people who are trying to cheat us, but I mean to trust those in your close proximity. Stop thinking like someone which distrusts even their parents, and most importantly, trust yourself. Have faith in your beauty, intelligence, and skills. To look beautiful, you do not have to have a model’s figure or cover your face with expensive makeup. Each of us is unique, special, and beautiful. If you have faith in this, both your life and your budgeting will be easier.