Johnny Gargano believes that absence makes the heart grow fonder. And that’s part of the reason why he’s taking his time deciding on the next step in his career in professional wrestling.

Gargano is currently a free agent after his contract with WWE expired late last year. He says he’s been taking time to get his physical and mental health in the right place.

“We live in a current age where everything’s on social media,” Gargano told ComicBook.com. “And the minute you do something, or you have a match, or you do a promo, especially if you’re on live television, that’s just the nature of the beast to where, especially during the COVID era, Twitter and social media was really the only instant response we all had.

“Especially not performing in front of a crowd, we all had to go and be like, ‘What worked, what didn’t work? What are people liking? What are people not liking?’ Gargano continued. “And social media, unfortunately, is very negative. I know people will say that you’re in the public eye, you’ve got to have thick skin, you’ve got to take it all in. I totally agree with that and everyone’s entitled to their opinions, but also there’s only so much you could take in before it starts weighing down on you, and starts beating you down, and starts making you question yourself or question things you’re doing.”

Johnny Gargano has another important reason to be taking a break from professional wrestling. He and his wife Candice LeRae are expecting the birth of their first child.

“I just wanted to completely break free of all that and refresh myself, and especially with a baby coming soon, I wanted to be in the best headspace I possibly could,” Gargano explained. “Not only for Candice but also for the baby.”

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