During my recent trip, I experienced more time disconnected from the internet than in a long time, although it was really only short periods of time. The question and answer is what I can apply to my research.
I actually had excellent wifi coverage and did not have to pay anywhere. In airports, hotels, stays with relatives and then a friend, and at the university, it was available. The disconnect came during the flight (Air Canada does not offer wifi), on national trains where I chose not to use first class for short trips (bad choice on one), on the Eurostar (not yet available), and during the days when I was out and about. During the sightseeing days, I did connect once in awhile, but it was not a priority. In Paris, there is wifi throughout the city, but I didn’t even get around to asking about how to access the couple of free wifi networks until the end of the stay. The bottom-line is that I did not miss being connected at all times, and there was never anything urgent and pressing awaiting me. My data roaming was turned off to avoid a huge bill, and I did have a mobile if someone really needed to reach me.
What I need to recognise from this is that I should be able to disconnect for reasonably long periods during the day when I am trying to read and write. There are different approaches being used by other doctoral students, such as ‘Shut Up and Write!‘ (can be done in person in a group or online) and ‘The Pomodoro Technique.’ Whether one of these or others is followed, or if I just take some time to read and write, it needs to be uninterrupted at times. I’ve proven I can be away the Twitter and email distractions, so time now to apply that while at home trying to move forward on the literature review.