Improv Programming

Programming shares many parallels with acting, especially improv: Pair programming maps directly to two-person improv scenes, mobbing maps to group scenes, and soloing maps to free-form monologues.

If you want to level-up your collaborative coding game, I highly recommend studying up on improv and (most importantly) attending classes. No amount of academic study compares to the visceral experience of a successful improv scene. You may find yourself looking forward to those pairing sessions you otherwise loath once you’ve learned the hidden rules. Or you may pinpoint what about those particular pairing sessions that you hate. Either way, you can’t beat the value of such an interdisciplinary approach.

And like acting, too much pair programming will burn you out. Take care of yourself. Your health matters more than your career and dangerous overwork can literally lead to your death. Pairing too deeply with the wrong people will harm you but so will pairing with great people when taken beyond your limits, and your limits will differ from other people. We only get one appearance on the stage of life before the curtain falls for the first and final time, so act accordingly.