Camilla Sacre-Dallerup has spent over 25 years as a successful athlete in the world of ballroom dancing, leading her to join the original cast of Strictly Come Dancing in 2004. After six years and successfully winning the trophy in 2008, Camilla left to focus on her Life Coaching and Wellbeing business and to further her training. 2015 has been equally hectic, Camilla has continued to forge a career as a respected motivational speaker and her first self-help book ‘Strictly Inspirational’ was published in the UK and US around the same time as she returned to the Strictly Come Dancing Tour – this time as a judge. Recently I caught up with Camilla to discuss the world of dating and settling down with Hollyoaks heart-throb Kevin Sacre.
You were thrust firmly into the public spotlight when Strictly took off, how did this affect every day things like dating and relationships? Work took centre stage for a while whilst I got used to it all and mended my broken heart. I found it so strange to be back on the dating market after eight years, I didn’t really understand the whole texting thing and games people were playing, but other than that nothing really changed except perhaps I became more cautious about who I chose to confide in.
Do you find it helps having a partner who is also in the public eye? Yes, because you understand each other’s situation and you can support each other from a place of knowing. We always managed to keep our relationship quite private, although we are performers and we like social media we are actually quite private people.
How does dating in the UK compare to Scandinavia? I’m not quite sure as it’s twenty years since I dated in Scandinavia so I really couldn’t say. But I remember when I was dating before I met my husband I couldn’t get to terms with the fact that people were dating multiple people at the same time, call me old fashioned but I thought it was more special when you focused on one at a time.
It can often be hard to find the right person to settle down with, what were the key qualities that attracted you to Kevin? From day one there were no games. I found that so refreshing. He was honest, kind and so down to earth and extremely understanding of my busy schedule, perhaps because he was used to intense work schedules too. It was just easy when we hung out and he called me straight away after our first date and said “if you feel how I feel, I consider myself off the market”. We never had to worry about whether it was the right time to text or whether we should meet up the next day or the day after, it felt like the most natural thing ever to be together. I met his whole family within our first month of dating.
Any dating mishaps/horror stories? No not really. I don’t think I dated enough, but I do remember somebody once handing me a napkin in a restaurant when I was single as in to say you need this as you have food all over your face and I proceeded to use it to wipe my mouth and ditch it by the plate and then he very awkwardly said “erm sorry that actually had my number on it,” oops not so elegant on my behalf.
Often insecurities lead us to attract the wrong kind of people, what advice would you give to young women struggling with confidence issues? I live by the sentence “Perception is projection” which means if we see things we don’t like in others first make sure we have healed that within and know that it’s your right to love yourself and respect yourself and that you are always good enough.
Ideal first date? My first date with my husband, it was at a local pub near my home in Surrey where we sat outside by the river and chatted for hours. Nothing fancy just so lovely and real.
Strange fan requests? I tend to remember the lovely ones instead. A few times on the Strictly tour I received some very beautiful flowers from a secret admirer, very thoughtful. It did however have a card on it with a request on it for me to call him, but I left it to just admire the flowers.
What advice would you give to your younger self? Have patience and always believe what’s for you won’t go by you. Sometimes we think everything needs to happen in an instant, but as I have gotten older I have realised that when things are delayed it’s because the timing isn’t right and when they finally happen you realise why they didn’t happen before. My husband and I often have this conversation as we truly believe that if we had met one year earlier, we would not have been a match as we both had things to learn first.
Do you think our perception of love changes as we get older? I hope not. I want to always be a romantic and always believe in love. I have heard so many stories of people finding love at all ages that I believe there is love out there for everyone, but it starts by loving ourselves and believing that it’s possible to find it too.
For more information on Camilla’s Life Coaching business check out http://www.camillasacredallerup.com and to purchase a copy of her awesome book here’s a link http://www.amazon.co.uk/Strictly-Inspirational-Camilla-Sacre-Dallerup/dp/1780288662