Thinking ahead to map out a safety net for the future, Caitlyn Boswell has been carefully moving pieces behind the scenes in the dynamic game of life.
Student learning support officer (SLSO) with Cowra Public School, the 21-year-old is currently studying a Bachelor of Education (K-12) both on and off campus with Charles Sturt University with hopes to become a Physical Education (PE) teacher.
Juggling her own homework while helping children at school with their own, the sports buff recently also added 'entrepreneur' to her resume on November 28.
A small, online business stocking homewares and lifestyle products, Miss Boswell has launched Hart & Sol.
"I'm doing this out of my savings and putting money aside each fortnight, but I thought 'I may as well start somewhere' and I'll hopefully just keep building up from here now," she said.
"It's going to be a long process, but I wanted to plan ahead for when I start a family someday, maybe open up my own store one day and be able to set my own hours.
"My stock is still a bit random at the moment and any profit I make goes straight into the business account I set up, but the big goal is to end up with lots of different products and support other small businesses in Australia."
Miss Boswell says with her hometown having no major retail hubs like Target or Kmart, she also felt inspired by seeing other women in Cowra heading up their own business gigs.
With her former Saturdays spent in a local boutique, she says she learned a lot from Cowra interior designer and owner of Unearthed Homewares, Ingrid Mansley.
The big goal is to end up with lots of different products and support other small businesses in Australia.- Cowra's Caitlyn Boswell launches homewares and lifestyle platform, Hart & Sol.
But the young gun's start-up decision was also sensibly orchestrated in terms of taking the potential for future burnout into account.
According to the New South Wales Teachers Federation, a 2022 survey revealed an alarming 63 per cent of teachers (who responded) said they'd leave the sector within the next decade due to the high rate of teacher burnout and overworking amid statewide staff shortages.
"My dad and I had always talked about how good it would be to open a business together and maybe that's still on the cards one day," Miss Boswell said.
"Because helping kids learn feels amazing, but I also know educators become burnt out and I just wanted a back-up plan because of that factor.
"It'd be really nice to have both teaching and the business going at once, but at the same time, I watch business owners juggle their own families with their work and they inspired me to keep going."
A fairly hush-hush unfolding, Miss Boswell kept her cards close when planning for the roll out Hart & Sol.
This reasoning was so she could have "as her baby" without feeling overwhelmed by a swarm of opinions and unsolicited advice.
"I just really wanted to make it my own without a lot of other noise kind of clouding my vision for it," she said.
"I'm doing all of the social media and marketing on my own, so my role is everything, but I just feel really good about it and I hope it gets to the stage where there's a broad range of items that people really love."
A target demographic of those in their early 20s and up, Miss Boswell's message is for those unsure of what to do in the here, now and later.
The idea is to keep going and not lose hope along the way.
"It's taken me three years to get into university after feeling like I was having a 'young life crisis' without not knowing what to do," she said and laughed.
"Don't rush what you want to do and take the time to figure it all out, because it doesn't matter who gets there first.
"You just have to try."
For more information, head online to the Hart & Sol website.