Being aware of your overall health is important. It can detect any symptoms and seek professional help when necessary. Although everyone seems to remain familiar with common physical illnesses, many people don’t seem to think about their mental health. Raising awareness helps people understand symptoms and find professional health. Aside from that, it can also break the mental health stigma that leaves many people suffering in secret. Thankfully, I found one coffee shop that uses its platform to promote mental health awareness — Sipkolohiya PH.
Sipkolohiya PH owners use their platform to promote mental health awareness
Cheska and Claire Saligao own Sipkolohiya PH. They are both in the medical world as Cheska works as an optometrist. Meanwhile, Claire is a psychology graduate. The sisters have a great interest in psychology and they both enjoy coffee. Drinking the beverage became their usual hangout and bonding moment. Then, one day, the sisters decided to start their own coffee shop. They took the step and opened a small online business first.
Cheska and Claire even named the coffee shop Sipkolohiya PH when they started to brainstorm ideas for the concept.
“A eureka moment took place. Birthing the name Sipkolohiya; a portmanteau of the words Sip meaning to drink something by taking small mouthfuls and Sikolohiya, the Tagalog translation of Psychology, the scientific study of the human mind and its functions.”
The COVID-19 pandemic’s effect on Sipkolohiya PH.
The pandemic has been hard for many people. However, a lot of people have made it an inspiration to start up their businesses. As for Cheska and Claire, they knew how risky it would be to open Sipkolohiya PH during the pandemic.
“We started during the pandemic. It was quite a big risk, to be honest. But, being in the economic state at that time, we thought that having another income stream aside from our full-time jobs is still a better decision.”
Aside from COVID-19, they had struggles that they had to face when opening up the coffee shop.
“Building the brand itself is one of the struggles that we encountered. Both of us do not have any solid background in marketing and business. But, with the guidance of our mom who worked in a related field, we somehow overcame it.”
Sipkolohiya PH and their flavors are derived from Sigmund Freud’s model, The Iceberg Method.
Although the man didn’t exactly invent the idea of the conscious versus unconscious mind, he certainly remained responsible for making it popular. Aside from that, he also made it one of his main contributions to psychology. Developed a topographical model of the mind, he described the features of the mind’s structures and functions.
Freud used the analogy of an iceberg to describe the three levels of the mind: conscious, subconscious, and unconscious. Cheska and Claire named their drinks under the collective term, The Barako Metaphor. This includes Unconscious Black, Subconscious SCL (salted caramel latte), and Conscious Latte.
For a little bit of background, conscious refers to when we are fully aware of what is going on. The subconscious, on the other hand, refers to the part of the mind that isn’t currently of focal awareness. Meanwhile, the unconscious mind comprises mental processes that remain inaccessible to consciousness. But, that influences judgment, feelings, or behavior.
As business owners, Cheska and Claire actually have their favorite drinks. Cheska’s favorite is the Conscious Latte. She is a very simple person. Thus, fitting the said drink. Claire, on the other hand, loves their newest release – Subconscious SCL which reflects her sweet and friendly personality. It tastes salty-sweet together with a strong coffee base which suits her palate.
“We both grew up in the province of Batangas, our father being born and raised there as well. Growing up, our mornings are made special with the distinct aroma of the Barako coffee brewed by our Lola. Our brewing process is old-fashioned, derived from how our Lola does it, boiled in a pot then left for a few hours for the sediments to settle, and then filtered two to three times before adding the other flavors.”
Cheska and Claire use their platform as the business owners of Sipkolohiya PH to promote mental health awareness. Aside from that, they also spread basic psychology information.
When asked about the decision process behind this, Cheska and Claire expressed:
“We noticed nowadays that there are a lot of people struggling with mental health. Most are even left undiagnosed. Our interest in this field is what drives us to become advocates and use our platform to promote, help, and become a safe space for everyone.”
Currently, they have plans to promote their brand more and endorse their newest flavor, Subconscious SCL. They also plan to put up their very own physical store from now on. Besides that, Cheska and Claire are still exploring and focusing on what they can offer in the present. So, you’re just going to have to tune in to their Facebook and Instagram accounts to know more.
Angela Grace P. Baltan is a Communication graduate from Colegio de San Juan de Letran. She doesn’t hesitate to be opinionated in analyzing movies and television series. As a writer, she uses her articles to advocate for feminism, gender equality, and mental health among others.