Retirement Challenges



Retirement challenges are not a misnomer; if you are retired you may have been confronted with these challenges in various forms. As a retiree you  may have assumed retirement will be a time of rest for senior citizens from years of hard labour. A period that signals freedom from children’s educational expenses, cessation of house rent payment etc. You had expected it to be a period of financial comfort when you can utilize the gains from years of sacrificial labour. Much as every retiree desire a scenario like this; life sometimes dictates otherwise and retirees find themselves thrown into a valley of financial setback.

A situation like this is very challenging as problems that arise were never envisaged and neither are retirees as strong as they were in their youthful years to start another round of hard labour.

Notwithstanding difficulties encountered a retiree must be determined to successfully overcome retirement challenges as they occur.


  • ► Dictionary definition of valley refers to low area of land surrounded by a higher ground. Valley of financial setback in retirement means a retiree has sunken down financially. This can be as a result of business failures, health issues, life challenges, obstacles, problems, hindrances etc.
  • ► Financial setback is one form of Retirement challenges. It causes delay or deprivation of a retiree’s expected financial benefit.

If at any time in your retirement period you find yourself in this valley; remember it is a temporary halt in the journey of life. You have a choice to decide:

  •  If that halt should be your final stop Or continue the journey until you get to the right stop for your destination. 


The Bible contain stories of great men of faith that were pushed into a valley during their life time. These men never allowed that to be their final stop for they fought and got out of the valley. Today they  are regarded as great men because they overcame their setback.

Your life can become a great inspiration for others if you don’t remain stuck in the valley of financial setback.

Dont give up

  • David in his old age vacated the throne and ran for safety from his own son at a time he ought to be enjoying the reward of his successes from the battles fought in his youthful years.

2 SAMUEL 15: 13-14 (GOD'S WORD)
Someone came to tell David, “The hearts of the people of Israel are with Absalom.” David told all his men who were with him in Jerusalem, “Let’s flee immediately, or none of us will escape from Absalom. Let’s leave right away, or he’ll catch up to us and bring disaster on us when he massacres the city.”
  • Isaac was chased out of a land where he had established himself and wanted to eat the fruit of his labour.

    GENESIS 26 :16 (NLT)
    Finally, Abimelech ordered Isaac to leave the country. “Go somewhere else,” he said, “for you have become too powerful for us.”
  • Isaac started afresh elsewhere and dug several wells but whenever it was time for him to fetch the water others that did not dig with him  forcefully took possession of the well.

    GENESIS 26 :19-21 (NLT)
    Isaac’s servants also dug in the Gerar Valley and discovered a well of fresh water. But then the shepherds from Gerar came and claimed the spring. “This is our water,” they said, and they argued over it with Isaac’s herdsmen. So Isaac named the well Esek (which means “argument”). Isaac’s men then dug another well, but again there was a dispute over it. So Isaac named it Sitnah (which means “hostility”).
  • Isaac dug until he got the one that could not be taken away from him.

  • GENESIS 26 : 22 (NLT)
    Abandoning that one, Isaac moved on and dug another well. This time there was no dispute over it, so Isaac named the place Rehoboth (which means “open space”), for he said, “At last the Lord has created enough space for us to prosper in this land.” 
  • ► The valley is not just for lazy people but also a preparation ground for the mountain top for the hard worker.

  • God understands why you have to temporarily reside in the valley of financial setback. It is an indication that it is not yet time to take a rest. There are situations one can not plan ahead for but they must be confronted as they arise.
  • Just like Isaac you could not have planned for Government demolition of your property as a result of community development or how do you envisage that worthless rogues called land grabbers will claim ownership of property you spent your hard income to develop? So also natural disasters cannot be insured against.
  • You may have suffered setback but there is room enough to bounce back and become better off than you were before the setback. Setback experiences has equipped me to trust God more for guidance as I keep moving above the valley of financial setback. God is the one that holds the key to our destination.  You need to trust Him too.

  • Just remember that argument, fight, hostility and opposition will always arise as you travel life’s journey but how you react to it is what counts.

Like Isaac you have the option of getting out of the valley and move to the open space of prosperity at the mountain top.

I am inspired by the persistence of ducklings struggling to climb stairs towards their destination. Despite many falls they never gave up. Click to watch

This post is in two parts. If you enjoyed this first part you will find the second part very beneficial.

In this second part you get to read:  1) How to stay above the valley of financial setback 2) Lessons from those that successfully stayed above the valley of financial setback 3) Conclusion


Seeking solution to Retirement challenges requires an understanding of the challenge. Many problems retirees face in later life can be traced to paucity of funds. If you sincerely desire to stay above the valley of financial setback then you need to:

  • Know and avoid things that can take retirees to the valley of financial setback. Sometimes the valley can be avoided if retirees had critically examined their choices before implementation. Prevention is always better and retirees will be spared from needless pain. Be painstaking and endeavour to do what is right always. Get the needed facts before acting.
  • Know how you got into the valley of financial setback to avoid a reoccurrence. To get answers you may have to use these helpful powerful words: How did I get there or how could I have avoided getting there? Where did I miss my way? When did I start going down? What did I do wrongly? Which way should I have taken? Who could have advised me? How do I avoid a repeat of the wrong decisions?

The above are just examples of some soul searching questions that can help you work out a plan to get back to the mountain top of progress. The questions are not meant to input blames on yourself and neither is it meant to make you sink into the valley of regrets.

  • Getting out of the valley requires a decision to fight on no matter what it takes. Sometimes when I grumble my mother reminds me that the sun is yet to set for me meaning I have not yet lost all as I still have the precious gift of life. Being alive qualifies me to continue my journey so as to fulfill the purpose of God for my life. Stop looking at the carcass of your setback; it is time to focus on the many positive aspects of your retirement. I love to meditate on:

But anyone who is alive in the world of the living has some hope; a live dog is better off than a dead lion.

Fight for the top

  •  Equip Yourself For Continuous Self-Improvement 

    This can be achieved through acquisition of new skills, reading of books related to your line of interest, attending seminars, learning from others that succeeded in areas where you have not excelled. Setback sometimes results because of knowledge gap- this period in one’s life is an opportunity to remedy the gap.

  • The reward for your investment in self improvement would come in various forms like -new doors of opportunities for you, renewed self confidence, boost in your self esteem as you prepare for a new start etc.
  •  Meet New Significant Contacts To Start Something New 

The people you know and relate with play a significant role in how you react to setbacks. You should seek and meet new people who can help you or inspire you to become a better person. Find out why they were successful and the challenges they had conquered. Be committed to a new start and continue till you get to your destination.

When our life is shaken up, it’s a chance to start something new. A time like this is an opportunity to fill your life with new meaning and discover some talents that had been lying dormant.

  •  Don’t Give Up: Take Consistent Regular Step Forward Towards Fulfilling Your Vision 

Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.”

Fear of the unknown can keep you glued to a place that is no longer serving you. When you summon the courage to take that first step into the unknown, new doors begin to open.

Now is the time to take that crucial step forward. Don’t be scared rather remember God’s promise to be with you all the way. Go at your own pace but make that first move.

Every new endeavor requires commitment, energy and perseverance to get it going. Life is full of challenges and set-backs; it is rare to meet someone whose life has been a complete bed of sweet pleasures.

Challenges give us perspective, empathy, humility, and a thick skin.

You only get the reward and experience the thrill of success if you endure to the end.

Don’t allow fear or disappointment to hinder you, try again and again until you become firmly rooted.

  •  Be Grateful For What Has Worked And People That Are With You 

It’s difficult to be grateful when things are not alright but it is important for us to see beyond our present circumstances. Every experience of life has a lesson that can help you become better at what you are doing. A thankful person will always receive more.

Be grateful to God for the people and resources He endowed you with; appreciate the people that have stood by you. Enjoy what you have.

Thank [God] in everything [no matter what the circumstances may be, be thankful and give thanks], for this is the will of God for you [who are] in Christ Jesus [the Revealer and Mediator of that will].


  • The valley though painful and trying for a retiree; has also caused the persevering ones to rise up with new strength, wisdom, clarity, compassion and humility as they step to the mountain top of success. They were able to venture into new territory because of the experience they acquired in the valley.
  • We have heard of retirees that made significant progress when they were advanced in age.
  • Nigeria has produced Presidents that got there when they were advanced in age and after setbacks: Past President Olusegun Obasanjo and President Mohammed Buhari are good examples of people that didn’t give up despite the odds against them. It takes hunger, resilience, courage and persistent to get to the position of prominence.
  • Be hungry for life outside the valley. If you hunger for it long enough you will seek for solution and God will satisfy your hunger.


Psalms 92: 12-14 (NKJV)
The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree; He shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon. Those who are planted in the house of the Lord Shall flourish in the courts of our God. They shall still bear fruit in old age; They shall be fresh and flourishing,

Our experiences in the valley greatly equip us for what lies ahead outside the valley if we are careful enough to evaluate the lessons.

Make a decision to get out of the valley to the mountain top for it is on the mountain your faith will be renewed, hope will be restored, your strength will increase, new visions will become clearer, you can see open doors of opportunity, the mountain top has enough room for prosperity and rest. On the mountain top the lessons from the valley will become handy.

In short the mountain top offers you an opportunity for a fresh start.

The journey is easier and has eternal value when you rely on God for help. To enjoy the inner strength offered by God through Christ you need to establish a relationship with Him.

ISAIAH 40: 29-31 (CEV)
The Lord gives strength to those who are weary. Even young people get tired, then stumble and fall. But those who trust the Lord  will find new strength. They will be strong like eagles soaring upward on wings; they will walk and run without getting tired.

I am positive the information in this post will help you confront and overcome retirement challenges as they occur. Feel free to share the link to this post with friends. Use it to equip others to confront Retirement challenges and motivate them to move on in life.

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