We’re always on the hunt of some expert dating tips that can help us decipher how girls think. Trust us, we know it’s harder than it looks to read a girl, so these types of things usually help guys out figure things out a little bit better.

While it can be difficult to understand what a girl really means — because she’ll never straight up just tell you the truth — one of the tricky things is understanding when she wants you to text her compared to when she wants you to call. Some girls don’t like talking on the phone, while others hate having full-blown text conversations that’s mostly small talk. So it’s important to try to decipher how she wants to communicate.

To better help dudes do this, we turned to AskMen, who turned to a relationship expert named Elena Burnett, among other experts, as the go-to resources to determine when your girl wants to text and when she actually wants to talk. Here are some dating tips to pick up on.

She’s probably thinking text is just easier… especially for a first date.

This should be pretty obvious, right? After all, how many people typically talk on the phone prior to meeting up in real life, especially if you two meet on an online dating app.

While each girl is different when it comes to how to communicate pre-date, Psychotherapist and author of The Relationship Fix, Dr. Jenn Mann, says that phones and phone calls are just becoming outdated.

“If you meet someone at a party, event or restaurant, most people, in this day and age, text before they call. Calling can sometimes appear aggressive or catch people off guard. Even just a text, asking when might be a good time to call, can make for a gentler introduction on the phone,” she explains.

It’s usually perceived that people will just text prior to meeting up, but feel her out a bit to see what makes her most comfortable, because that should be your first priority.

Avoid the whole over-texting thing

As mentioned above, most people don’t want to be involved in texting conversations throughout the day. That shows immaturity, codependency and, for a lot of reasons, is just a bad habit to get into in terms of expectations for a relationship.

If you’ve met a girl who likes texting all the time rather than talking on the phone, make sure you find balance and set boundaries. She may like to communicate that way rather than talk on the phone, but bring up why you don’t have time to constantly text, and why it’s better for the relationship to talk on the phone instead.

Early in relationships, phone calls should be used for plans only

According to Elena Burnett, texting is OK when you’re first meeting someone and casually dating one another, with phone calls only being for times that involve making plans. But Burnett makes it clear that phone calls early on in relationships shouldn’t be an opportunity for small talk.

“Never ask a woman if you can call her, but find out when she has free time. Take the initiative and don’t use the phone call to chit-chat too much. Phones should be thought of as for emergencies only. Call to invite her out and leave the small talk for when you meet up,” she explains.

So, do you feel any better about when you should text versus when you should call? We certainly hope so, because these dating tips can be the difference between you coming across as too needy and being confident with strong communication skills. Remember to choose wisely, fellas.

(H/T AskMen)