A BAD WORKMAN ALWAYS BLAMES HIS TOOLS
This is true of any profession that requires an external piece of hardware in order to perform the job. It is especially relevant to photography. As photographers we have more gadgets and gizmos than most professions can shake a stick at and it's also easy to blame the gear - or lack thereof when things go wrong, instead of being honest with ourselves.
Lets face it, photography is bloody hard when you start out. It gets easier but it's always a challenge - which is good. It keeps you interested. There are so many things to learn technically before you even touch upon the artistic side of things and with so many genres, photographic and post processing styles, at times it can feel never ending and completely overwhelming.
Amateurs tend to look at what enthusiasts and professionals are producing and straight away point at the gear those guys are using. "Ah, that's taken with a Hasselblad - no wonder the photos are so damn good" or "I'm only using an entry level DSLR with a kit lens, the pros use full frame sensor cameras and wide aperture glass, that's the reason why my photos are crummy in comparison." Of course this is like saying your cooking sucks because you use cheap £20 set of saucepans whereas a chef uses £200 ones.
Unless guided otherwise, many beginners seek to remedy their inferior photos with the acquisition of a new lens. Shortly followed by a second. With image results still lacking, clearly something else is required and so a flashgun is next on the list. Then some small light modifiers to alter that flashgun. But wait, flash looks better off the camera? What the hell? Better get some wireless triggers and light stands. Wow you can fit even bigger modifiers on those. I'd better have me some of those too. What about a tripod? Still not liking these photos. GRRR!!
Seen another pro using a different lens, might give one of those a whirl. Maybe some filters to go on the lens. Oh, how about reflectors. And on and on and on it goes. Before too long it becomes obsessive. Photography is no longer about taking photos but a quest to purchase every single bit of gear you are ever possibly going to need to cover every eventuality. It can only make your photography better!
The truth of the matter is that being completely familiar with your camera, understanding light and some basic rules of composition, is far more important than any piece of equipment you can buy. Learning the craft is the most valuable tool you can possess. You can solve a great deal of lighting and aesthetic problems right off the bat, purely with observation and a little knowledge. Equipment only makes things easier, quicker and helps you achieve different looks but, without knowing what you're doing with it, they're of no real benefit.
Think of it this way. You could buy a new car. Add a sports body kit to it. Lower the suspension. Upgrade the stereo system. Get some 19" alloys and low profile tyres. Respray it in pearlescent paint with a go faster stripe down the sides. Throw on a turbo and have the piston heads polished. Jazz up the exhaust system for a real throaty sound. It looks like something off Too Fast, Too Furious 10 (are they at 10 yet? I lost count). Awesome! Look at that bad-ass car!! Yeah, until you come to the realization you can't drive!
At some point or another, virtually every fledgling photographer has been in this scenario. I myself have been there and admit I still have to resist temptation. I love my toys but the fact is, I use them and know what I'm doing with them. I only purchase equipment if it's truly needed or I recognize the limitations placed upon me by existing stuff. That's when you upgrade. If you're asked "why do you need to upgrade your equipment" and you can't give a logical and honest explanation, then it's not time.
Unfortunately for some, it remains all about the gear for them and they blame the lack of decent photographs upon it. Why? Because it's easy to do. Externalizing our frustrations rather than looking at our own shortcomings is an unfortunate human trait, for the majority at least. At some point though, those people get so irritated and fed up with buying equipment and getting the same results, that they just give up entirely and sell off everything. "Photography just isn't for them", even though they never really did anything other than purchase a camera and equipment and played around with it. The remainder will come to the realization they are responsible for their photography and everything else is just a tool. The eureka moment.
So if you can identify yourself in any of the above, take heart. You're not alone. The question is though, do you have the fortitude to do something about it and actually wade through the technical jargon, educate yourself on the properties of light and the inverse square law and basics of composition? If yes, I wish you the best of success and enjoyment in photography. If not, good luck with your eBay auction. You never know, I might put in a bid!