Q of the Week : How do you set personal boundaries?

I’m amazingly bad at setting boundaries.  I bite off more than I can chew, and then have little left for what I really want to do.  I say yes and then regret it, hating to disappoint people.  I pick up the phone when I should be working, and then fail to tell the caller I can’t really chat, feeling antsy half the time I’m talking.  I say no when I’ve planned badly, and have to skip out on something I really wanted to do because I didn’t set good boundaries elsewhere. 

I simply don’t define my time well, which is my biggest boundary issue.  I want to always feel spontaneous, and sometimes sabotage myself in doing so.  Thankfully I rarely regret boundary crossing, but it does have consequences in how little sleep I get or what I accomplish that was actually on my to-do list! 

I was much more boundary-free before kids, but time becomes so much harder to manage when it involves so many other lives and needs and responsibilities.  I want to be available and helpful and involved, but it’s not always possible to fit it all in, and I have to draw the line somewhere.  A friend just mailed me the book Boundaries: When to Say Yes, When to Say No-To Take Control of Your Life, prompting the question. 

How do you handle personal boundaries as a mom?