Neelam Sethi

Parenting Expert

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Today’s guest has some experience raising super successful children. Have you heard of Ramit Sethi or Nagina Sethi Abdullah? They’re siblings and both have been on So Money as guests. I’m lucky enough to call them friends, as well. Ramit is an entrepreneur and the New York Times bestselling author of “I Will Teach You To Be Rich” and his sister Nagina is a full-time consultant and the founder of the health and fitness program Masala Body.

Believe it or not they have two additional siblings who are just as successful. So today on the show – how the heck do you raise financially successful and happy kids? Mom Neelam Sethi and her husband were featured in a New York Times article, “How to Raise a Financial Wizard.” And now Neelam, who is a retired elementary school teacher, is spilling the details with us – for the first time on a podcast.

Neelam and her husband immigrated to the US after an arranged marriage in India. They raised her four children in California and sent them all to prestigious universities on a single income without ANYONE going into debt…How? For as strict of a parent she may have been there were some financial rules, she says, were meant to be broken. And what were the money boundaries Neelam needed to set for herself as a mom and wife?

To learn more about Neelam visit her website raisetopkids.com. Here, she shares her best advice to raise motivated children and you can get her “3 Strategies To Raise a Motivated Child.”

My favorite quote from the interview: “You can do anything you want as long as you know how. The secret is to just ASK.” – Click To Tweet

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  • Thank you Farnoosh! I loved this podcast….

    @Neelam I’ve just listened to your interview…It was really powerful! The tip that stood out to me most was not giving kids an allowance (pocketmoney in UK).

    I’m trying to figure out a good way to tell my kids they won’t be getting any anymore :)… Perhaps I could tell them if they want something – to “put it on the list”?

    For example my 12YO daughter wants a pair of customised trainers from adidas £110 (eyewatering amount…) for her birthday. I thought about asking her to think about creative ways she could get them for free… what do you think? Is this a good idea to get her weaned off pocket money?

  • Jen Turrell

    Great episode Farnoosh. Neelam is fantastic! While listening I was imaging Ramit and his siblings trying to sneak out of the house to date. My favorite part was the list. I am totally going to do that with my kids. I love turing wants into aspirations instead of a refusal. Let’s figure out how to make things on the list happen instead of saying no or even we can’t do that now. Thank you so much! Such great advice.

  • Linda Brogan

    My favourite takeaway was picnicking outside prestigious colleges. It made me dig deeper into your relationship with your husband, Neelam, and feel full of light about you two sitting down and making this decision together and putting your children first in such a serious way and making your arranged marriage work. It is still making me feel warm. I loved the rebellious daughter and mother subtext. I just love the family subtext. And holding onto your culture which includes the dashes of spirituality like gratitude and the talks that lead to some income. Which makes sense of Ramit being able to poke fun at his heritage sometimes because he is so comfortable in his skin. And hugely hugely I love that you are on a journey of discovery to pinpoint what you did right so you can pass it on. And the calm pulled back manner in which you say this gives it such a sincerity. I can’t wait to hear more Sethi family. Oh and your dad. I kept wondering how has she been so sure of what to do and there is your dad with the wish-list. What a huge inspiration. And here it is coming true. How many generations later and you as a family are able to afford anything on this list. Wow!

  • Linda Brogan

    Ps Great episode Farnoosh.