“The past four, five months have been very challenging for me mentally and emotionally, but here I am. I’m trying to put all that behind me and move on,” Djokovic told reporters on Sunday.
The 34-year-old will face the world’s number 46, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, on Tuesday as he begins preparing to defend his French Open next month.
In February, Djokovic lost his world rankings to Daniil Medvedev, but the 20-time Grand Slam champion returned to the top of the standings three weeks later after Medvedev’s second-round loss to Gael Monfils at Indian Wells.
“You’re dealing with everything that’s probably lurking inside and maybe waiting to come out,” Djokovic said as he reflected on the Australian Open debacle.
“I try to deal with it on a daily or weekly basis, whatever. If something pops up, I acknowledge it, but I move on.
“It’s not something that bothers me on a daily basis, so to speak, I don’t feel like it has left huge scars on me that I can’t train or compete in tournaments or live my life, far from it.
“But it’s certainly been some very challenging months and something I’ve never experienced before. So I’ll try to use that as fuel for what’s to come.”
In Monaco, a place he has called home for the past ten years, Djokovic awaits a quarter-final against 18-year-old Carlos Alcaraz, who recently became the youngest Miami Open champion for men in the tournament’s history.
Also competing in Monte Carlo this week are World No. 3 Alexander Zverev and World No. 5 and defending champion Stefanos Tsitsipas.