Despite decline, stick with stocks

If Tuesday's stock market slide leaves you rethinking your portfolio, Jim Cramer doesn't want you to make a run for the door—not yet.

Even though the Dow Jones industrial average fell 272 points, or 1.6 percent, and the S&P 500 declined 29 points, or 1.5 percent, Cramer thinks stocks remain your best bet for the long haul.

"You simply can't make enough money in any other asset class to be able to retire, without owning stocks," Cramer said.

And even though the decline may be giving you more pain than gain, Cramer thinks this simple rule can restore your confidence, even as you reach for two much-needed aspirins.

"Know what you own," he said. "Describe it to me. Tell me what it does, and why you bought it and give me a three-sentence pitch about why it's good." As long as you can articulate why your stocks are good stocks, Cramer thinks, you'll do just fine.

Read MoreCramer's golden rule for long-term market prosperity

Mad Money
Adam Jeffery | CNBC

Meanwhile, as the Street grapples with declines, Cramer knows some investors are likely to start buying. If you're among the intrepid and are currently sifting through the rubble looking for opportunities, there's something Cramer says can absolutely ruin your returns, and it is to be avoided at all costs.

Read MoreIndividual investors should never do this

If you're eager to put capital to work amid this current decline, Cramer said, don't get carried away; there is such a thing as owning too many stocks, no matter how good they may seem.

"Unless you're running a mutual fund, there's no reason to own a large number of stocks," Cramer said. Instead, "I want you to hold between five and 10, but not more than 10, high-quality, diversified names."

Read MoreStocks: How many is too many?

What's the bottom line?

No matter if you're moving through the market cautiously, starting to dip a toe, or buying with abandon, the "Mad Money" host thinks over the long term, stocks still provide the best path to prosperity.

And although "you may not be able to control the amount of pain the market throws your way, by following my strategies you can absolutely control how to deal with it."