You probably shouldn't have given him your number in the first place. If you are really excited about the guy who is texting you, or if you are just excited to be getting any attention from a guy, you need to resist your temptation to indulge in communicating with him (anticipating his texts, reading them, replying, and anticipating the next one).
This excitement seems like a small thing; but when you are dropping everything immediately upon receiving a text notification, or constantly checking your phone just to make sure you didn't miss the latest message from him, you start to realize how much you are allowing a merely potential relationship to monopolize your priorities.
In these cases, you need a healthy dose of realism.
I've dated countless women and it has always amazed me how little they know about men.
If nothing else, this blog is an outlet for voicing my astonishment at the typical female's ignorance of the male mindset.
At most, it is a reliable source of advice for women who want to improve their chances with the opposite sex.
Since I've already explained how you should reply to a man's texts, the obvious follow-up is to explain when to reply to a man's texts.
(Though if it does take you hours to reply, it is worth acknowledging this by giving a quick explanation; though an apology isn't usually warranted - if it had been urgent he should have called.) A good way to strike this balance is to text the men you are dating in the same way that you regularly text your acquaintances friends or family.
Would you bring your phone into to the gym with you - even though you normally don't - in order to be available for a text that your female coworker might or might not send you?
Then why do you feel the need to do it with your cute coworker who you really like and suspect might be into you?
Treat these men like the mere friends or acquaintances that they are, until they become something more - at which point text games won't be necessary anyway.
Yeah, sure, maybe it will mean that you occasionally seem a little over-excited to get his text (because you happen to be checking your messages when his comes in), or a bit distant (because you were ignoring your phone while studying for ten hours, and his text came in right after you started); but you will only seem so in the short term.
No single text you send will represent to him your attitude, so no single response time will matter completely.
You've probably heard all kinds of suggestions from other girls about how long to wait before replying to a text from a guy you like.