I've been doing some reflecting, hope to get some feedback from others that have been doing this for a while... Known: I have never met anyone realtime that made their fortune investing in individual stocks. I have lost a lot of money investing. If I continue to invest in stocks it will not change my current lifestyle, it will only effect retirement timing and comfort level. I started following the market in 2007, made and lost a lot of money. I maximize 401k for myself and spouse. I reflect and review my trading, it was too rapid and fast paced, principal error keeping me from the big money was not holding onto stocks in overall bull market, and not holding onto shorts in overall bear mkt. I was too leveraged. Now, I listen more to the inner small voice in my head and have held onto a couple of issues for many months with plans to hold for years. I am principally interested in just equities, with an eye on futures/commodities. I've been reading more from a buy and hold low cost index investing area, specifically that of John Bogle ilk. I started out with this stuff 10 years ago, might well have been better had I stayed the course, certainly so in my trading accounts. My attention to the market really helped out the big money in 401K, saving me from big losses and also guiding me back into the market within a few months of the overall bottom. So what I am trying to figure out is if this is a fools game or not? Is the excuse of paying all this tuition money really part of the game? Do people really turn it around and get profitable? Have any of you consistenly made money in stocks with buy and hold? It is tough to know what all the lies are that I tell myself. Any thoughts? If I was to give advice to anyone new, I'd say to maximize tax advantage accounts in low cost index funds and to not join the individual investor ranks.