Took Kira the pupper on a 5-mile trail run today. It was a blast, racing through the forest and the open fields in the foothills where I live.

When we were done I stopped and looked back to watch Kira descend the hillside, only to see her plop down in a shady spot and refuse to budge.

Laughing, I turned and took a step right into a gopher hole, twisting the shit out of my ankle.

In case the irony isn’t clear, I’ll say it out loud: 5 miles racing through treacherous terrain only to injure myself taking one step in a flat field of grass.

The only difference between the trail run and that fateful step? I was paying attention. Then I wasn’t. I was distracted.

During a trail run, my eyes are glued to the terrain ahead. I mean, there are tree roots, rocks, fallen limbs and obstacles constantly. And yet, by paying attention you can avoid injury.

Take one little distracted step and lookout!

Why the story? It’s a metaphor for our culture.

We are not paying attention anymore. Nobody is. We’re all too distracted by our apps — texting, social media, gaming, commerce, sports — to pay much attention to anything that matters.

We are perpetually distracted as a culture. No one is immune to the constant distraction of tweets, YouTube videos, Facebook posts, Instagram selfies, podcasts, Amazon purchases, Twitch contests and streaming content.

And guess what that leads to? That’s right. Lots of big mistakes, bad decisions, worse outcomes and of course, pain. Lots and lots of pain.

Not to mention the mass disassociation.

I mean, anyone who has a dog knows the term “socialize.” That’s because dogs that aren’t socialized are prone to be more defensive and aggressive.

It’s as if our entire society is becoming de-socialized.

Question is, how much time do you spend distracted?

How much of your life are you not living?

For me it’s way too much. And having to ice and elevate my leg tonight isn’t the worst of it. The worst of it is the bad decisions and mistakes I’m not even aware of because I’m too distracted to notice or even give a crap.

That, and the life I’m not living.

Image credit Benjamin Linh VU, Andreas Riemenschneider and Chris / Flickr