Retired recently and have been a self-directed investor for the past 5 years. Prior to that I had no real experience. Like many, I put money away in my 401k and IRA selecting mutual funds and purchasing company stock. While dating a financial planner she recommended I start investing because I knew enough to be dangerous. She wanted me to invest in funds but those had lost money and no one apologized or seemed to care. If my money was going to get lost or mismanaged then I was going to do it. My new second job was studying, reading, listening and learning. Then the recession hit and looking back I was blessed to start investing at the depths of the recession. I believed we would come back and so began learning more as I went forward - on the job training which now has become my new career, my new small business. Botton line...I'm still learning, but then aren't we all.