Once upon a time, Veronika London was a TORO Woman. Next week, she’ll begin co-hosting Damage Control (“advice for guys in sticky situations”) with yours truly.

What qualifies her to dispense advice to confused and possibly even misguided young men? According to the striking brunette, nothing more or less than having lived through a tumultuous and, ultimately, disastrous relationship. But she emerged from the screaming matches and broken furniture and therapy with a hard-won wisdom that she’s happy to share. Her ex once said to her, “Just be happy with yourself. Never depend on another to make you happy” – a sentiment that’s now at the core of her philosophy.

She also emerged from the wreckage having learned the importance of communication. “Men feel afraid to tell you how they feel,” she explains. “Just tell them exactly what you want. Half the time they don’t know what to do – and, really, they just want to make you happy.”

London has enjoyed the Damage Control taping sessions, saying that it compares favourably with her time on film and TV sets. “It’s more free and in some ways a lot more liberating than having to be told word-for-word what to say and feel in each and every scene.”

A busy year lies ahead for the clear-eyed beauty, with a lead role in the feature-length film Jane Doe and a supporting role in Unleashed, set to shoot in New York City early in 2010. She also returns to TV for a second season of HBO’s Lingerie and a third season of Showtime’s Body Language. But with so much on her plate, is she really able to commit to Damage Control? She slips on a pair of oversize shades and walks off, only to turn back with a radiant smile. “Just watch me,” she says. I promise her that we will.