How to be Strictly Inspirational

If you're a fan of self-help gurus Marianne Williamson and Paulo Coelho but know you could do with a refresher course in positivity then Strictly Inspirational is for you.

Part self-help, part autobiography, the book is written by former Strictly Come Dancing champion turned NLP coach Camilla Dallerup. 

There are the usual analogies that seasoned self-help readers will know well, but Camilla backs them up with compelling examples from her own life story, ensuring a very personal rather than textbook read.

I know from experience that Camilla practices what she preaches. I first met her at a party in 2008 - just after she was paired with Holby City actor Tom Chambers, on hugely popular BBC show Strictly Come Dancing.  

At the time I was working at WOMAN magazine as Celebrity Editor and was keen to secure an exciting Strictly exclusive.  I suggested to Camilla that she and Tom should come to my office and give the WOMAN staff a dance lesson - which we'd cover in the magazine.   Camilla was really enthusiastic about the idea but I wasn’t too hopeful that we'd get it past the formidable Strictly press office.  I shouldn't have worried - dynamic and positive people like Camilla, make things happen!

After wowing us with their moves in the WOMAN office and giving us an amazing exclusive, Camilla and Tom went on to win the 2008 series.

The following year, Camilla decided not to return to Strictly, and in her book she describes how she faced alot of criticism and negativity about leaving such a successful gig.

But since leaving her comfort zone, Camilla has fulfilled several childhood ambitions - she’s been an actress, columnist, presenter, life coach, fully trained Neuro-Linguistic Programming coach and now author. 

She also came full circle by becoming a judge of The Strictly Come Dancing UK 2015 tour alongside Tom and TV judge Craig Revel Horwood.

But professional achievements don’t feel like they count for much, if your personal life is a mess - and Camilla knows this better than anyone.

She suffered public heartbreak after splitting with her fiancé, Strictly dancer Brendan Cole in 2004 but made the painful decision to continue working alongside Brendan on the show.  “It wasn’t too long before I pulled myself out of Poor Me City. Trust me, this is not a place to linger if you want true happiness.”

Camilla is now happily married to ex-Hollyoaks actor Kevin Sacre, who encouraged her to share her life lessons by writing a book. 

 As well as including practical exercises in her book, Camilla - like any self-respecting self-help queen  praising the power of a vision or dream board - pinning up pictures from magazines and newspapers that inspire you! “Hang your dream board somewhere where you’ll see it every day. If you want something to happen you have to visualize it first.” 


Strictly Inspirational (Watkins Publishing, £14.99) is available now

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