If you've been doing long term investing then certainly you've made $$ the past couple years. But as a trader you need to be able to make money in ANY market --- up or down. How much money have you made so far shorting stocks? If none, you need to think long and hard about how you'd generate income (i.e. profits) in a bear market. I always think of a football analogy --- how many teams win consistently if they ONLY employ a running game (or passing) and don't use the other offensive option? Same with trading --- you need to play both ways if you hope to make money as a trader.