No time wasted! Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino was ready to return to Jersey Shore pretty much the moment he got out of prison — and that’s right about when MTV picked him up to resume his role on the show. In an exclusive interview with In Touch, the reality star revealed the first thing he did after smooching Lauren Sorrentino was head back to filming.

“A lot of the fellas asked me, ‘Why don’t you take a couple days off, you know, from prison?’ But MTV picked me up the second that I got out,” Mike, 37, shares. “The first thing I did when I was released was, obviously, I kissed my wife. … I think I put my finger up in the air, like, to god … that I survived, and [then] I got in the car. MTV picked us up.”

Mike and Lauren Sorrentino
Matt Baron/Shutterstock

Returning so soon after getting out — and being welcomed by his fellow cast members — is one of the things that Mike “loves” about being on the series. “Our show is very authentic and genuine,” he gushes. “That’s what real reality TV is all about.” Though he admitted filming has been a “whirlwind,” he said it was a “no brainer” deciding to come back. “I’m very grateful to be here, to be back at work, back with my beautiful wife [and] my [Jersey Shore] family.” According to him, he’s now “living his best life.”

There were some minor challenges that came with adjusting post-prison, however — like learning how to use his phone again after eight months without it. There are also larger challenges he’s had to deal with, like wife Lauren’s miscarriage. The star made a point of staying positive about starting a family, and he revealed that same positivity is what got him through his time behind bars.

“Positivity is a choice, and I use that as a weapon against the daily stresses of life,” he tells In Touch. “Depression or anxiety or self-doubt … You gotta fight back, and I believe that me and my wife and my family did a really great job considering the circumstances. … [Prison] is not a good situation at best,” he continues. “I chose to fight back, be positive and turn a negative situation positive.”

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