The ballroom dancer was part of the BBC show’s professional troupe for 15 years, from the first season it ran, but was told in January that his contract had not been renewed to partner a celebrity for 2018.
Appearing on Loose Women, Cole admitted that it had been tough to come to terms with, but that he now doesn’t mind about not being one of the show’s stars anymore.
He said: “You have time to process things and within two weeks I was alright with it.
“The execs make decisions on these shows and I’m not a yes person, I don’t say yes to everything. Maybe there were one or two things that I won’t go into. I can be a controversial character.”
Cole added: “I got a rap on the knuckles last year for saying one thing behind the scenes.”
The Loose Women panellists tried to get him to talk about new head judge Shirley Ballas, who he reportedly fell out with and made comments against, but Cole wouldn’t be drawn.
He said: “I don’t mind that the BBC made that decision. That’s their prerogative, that’s their show.
“I had 15 fantastic series on the show, but my fear was, what if that 15 years in Strictly was all a bit of a farce and no one really cares and the phone doesn’t ring? But it’s been the best year of my life.”
Cole is now touring his own dance show, ‘All Night Long’, and writes a weekly Strictly column for Hello! magazine.
He said: “When I first started it, I thought, ‘What have I done, I don’t really want to watch everything every week.’
“But I’m really enjoying it and not being bound by the BBC is really good, I can be honest and direct.”
He was also happy to join in with a personal discussion of men’s body image based on a story about more men getting penis filler injections, and said that he had been born with the condition hypospadias, where the penis develops with the urethra opening in the wrong place.
In March, Cole became a dad for a second time, and has talked in the past about struggling to bond with his baby son to begin with – but told Loose Women that things had got much better.
He said: “I struggled to bond. I still feel quite emotional about it now.
“My life had just turned upside down, I’d found out I wasn’t back on Strictly and there was the pressure of needing to make sure the money was coming in.
“Maybe if I hadn’t struggled to bond with him, maybe the bond wouldn’t be as strong now.”