Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Karina Smirnoff
09/11/2009 at 04:30 PM EDT
After his split
from Karina Smirnoff, Dancing With the Stars
pro Maksim Chmerkovskiy is taking it one step at a time.
"It's life," Chmerkovskiy, 28, tells Entertainment Tonight
. "You do your thing and then you move on."
Which will be easy, he says, because he'll so busy on the dance floor.
"This is probably the most seriously I've ever taken a season [on Dancing with the Stars
], in light of everything that's happened," he says. "This is what I want to focus all my attention on."
In a separate interview with ET
, Smirnoff, 31, says the media scrutiny of the breakup was inevitable. "It comes with the territory, being on the show that has become amazingly successful," Smirnoff says
. "Everything is in the public eye, but again, it is a private matter. It is a private relationship, and it should totally stay private."
Though they're no longer a couple, the two will reunite on the dance floor
. They will perform at the 61st Primetime Emmy Awards on Sunday, Sept. 20, PEOPLE confirmed Thursday.