Watch Those Numbers Add Up!

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Watch Those Numbers Add Up!

Do you know that people who track their hours finish their hours more quickly? Ok, so I do not actually have any proof of this :0). However, what I do know is that the people I talk to who have a “general” idea of their hours often end up waiting until well after they have hit the “mark” before submitting their hours. Sometimes, spending an extra 4 months, or more gathering hours.

What their mind tells them is happening with their hours is often quite different than the reality. In addition, because they don’t track on a regular basis, inputting hours and calculating totals becomes a chore, and easy to avoid! While taking a laid back approach to the licensing process is absolutely the right fit for some people, for others it just makes a long process take even longer!

You are here at, so I imagine you are the kind of person who wants to keep track, and is excited to see the number of hours you have completed grow. You know that breaking your big goal into smaller steps and keeping track of your progress helps you to reach your goal. You have already learned that is the best way to keep track of your hours, the most intuitive, and the easiest!

Here are some additional tips to speed along the process:

1. Have a method for daily tracking of your clinical tasks. Whether it is in a dayplanner, agency scheduling book, or a piece of paper with little hash marks, keep good track of what you are doing at work. I find that many interns underestimate the amount of time they are spending on the phone with clients and doing clinical paperwork.
2. Input your hours on a weekly basis, print them off, and get them signed. I think this is especially important at the beginning of a supervision relationship. You are building trust in one another. If there is going to be a problem with signing off hours, you want to know right away. In addition, life happens. You don’t want to be scurrying if the supervisor suddenly leaves, gets in a car accident, or dies.
3. Know the laws and have a clear idea of how they relate to your workplace. Make sure you have a clear understanding of where your cross the line between client contact and countable hours. Did you know that doing a children or teen therapy group counts towards your children, families, and couples hours? My clinical supervisor, who was wonderful, didn’t know this and gave me misinformation. While clinical supervisors are great, get in the habit of going straight to the source with your questions. BBS and CAMFT are great resources (even for ACSWs).
4. Workshops, trainings, and individual therapy are all great ways to max out your hours. Just be aware of the 1,000 maximum on professional enrichment activities: supervision, trainings, and individual therapy.
5. Keep an eye on those ratios. The ratios are important for a variety of reasons. In the next “installment” I will be talking about what to do if your ratios are off to get back on track.

Are you doing all of the above? A+!
Find an area that you need to work on? Get moving!
Did this bring up questions? Ask them!

Let me know how helpful (or unhelpful) this information is for you! You can easily post a comment or question using the simple form below. Have a private question or want to make a suggestion about future topics? E-mail

Remember, the process from here to the license and professional life you want does not have to be painful!

Miranda Palmer, MFT

Miranda Palmer, MFT is a coach who helps pre-licensed individuals develop and follow their individualized path from where they are, to the license, business, and salary they want! You can learn more about her services, free online study groups for exams, and read more free articles at

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