The key to avoiding huge losses is to be disciplined. It is critical to have a plan and be able to stick to it. Think long-term and you will fare better than those who don’t. More daunting still is having the discipline to ignore what others are doing, to tune out the noise, and most all, dismiss the advice of quasi-gurus. Focus on your own strategy. Resist the temptation of wanting to chase a “hot” stock because it usually never ends well.
I have a quant portfolio and a discretionary trading account. I have done this to protect my money from my own worst instincts. Nobody can be successful 100% of the time. Those who claim to be are liars. Thanks to technology anyone can be player in the stock market. With Robinhood you can trade for free. Finviz gives you free market data. Stockcharts provides free and reliable technical analysis. Use the technology. Get out of you comfort zone and learn new strategies.