It's good to know that you realize that you need to get fully grounded in a solid introduction to the theory and practice of investing and retirement planning. It's ok to try to pick up advice in bits from strangers on the internet (e.g. us) but please supplement that with finding a solid book. I'd suggest William Bernstein's IF YOU CAN, which is free on the internet. It's aimed at people in their 20s and 30s but the ideas apply regardless of how old you are. IF YOU CAN is short and easy to understand. After that you could try other slighly longer books aimed at beginners, e.g. Bernstein's The Investor's Manifesto being just one.